Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spring Chicken

Oh cursed, fowl foul working mother!
I did not get the job. More importantly, I did not WANT the job. Because it was for this guy, gah. Game over. I am embarrassed to say I considered it, would have probably taken the job if the company had been more open with my schedule. But no--their working hours are from 7:30am until 6pm, usually later (not to mention travel to Asia, trade shows and accounts). WTF? Tack on the hour commute each way and I would be gone from 6:30 in the morning until 7 or later every night. I would never see Zoey, much less be able to drop her off and pick her up from school. When I told Bryan he said, "why wouldn't you have been able to do those hours?" To which I replied, "because of a little thing called the space-time continuum, the love of my daughter and the distaste of dick bosses." Okay, I didn't really say that. I just sort of whimpered into my cell phone while pulling over to the side of the road in the rain. Big talk at the Petunia Face manor tonight regarding Shared Priorities and Goals. And then we'll watch an episode of Breaking Bad and discuss the relative merits of pushing meth (between the hours of 9 to 5 only, natch).
I'm not gonna' lie: I feel angry right now. Discouraged. Scared and then, oh? What's that? Ah, yes, more anger. I want to write a post on working mothers, but right now it would surely come out sounding whiney and annoying as fuck. So I won't. Instead I give you this: not mine but I wish it were, especially the part about the sweatpants.

That is all.


I *Heart* You said...

the perils of the working mom. i am only a working pregnant lady and all of a sudden i am aware that after childcare costs and insurance enough of my salary will be left over to feed my baby nothing but generic Hot Pockets. hope he likes Italian.

jane said...

good for you.

it is hard doing it all. i finally gave up. we have less money, but we have a "wife" now (me). and i'm going with it.

i loved that pic you posted of your toes recently. to me it said - sure i'm not getting paid big bucks right now but i am wearing flip flops in the park.

i've learned THAT is worth more than the big bucks.

Lovebird said...

HANG IN THERE! That job was not for you. I love your blog:)

Vanessa said...

The right opportunities always present themselves. And in the meantime there are awesome movies to be seen! Thanks for posting that, I hadn't heard of that movie before.

Erienne said...

Oh my goodness...this is why movies STILL make money during recessions! This looks freaking hilarious and we need some damn good humor in our lives right now!

I know it sucks to hear (as I am hearing this phrase everyday from at least one somewhat loved relative or friend) but hang in there. Once we hit rock bottom we can only go up! (Or so they tell me).

topsyturvydays said...

I feel your frustration. The job I had before I became a SAHM was 8-7 (often later). But the company sponsored daycare closed at 6:30. Huh?

Hang in there. I like to believe that everything happens for a reason (I'm still waiting for some of those reasons!)

I wish that movie was coming out before labor day!

Mer said...

I have several questions and one comment:
1. Where do you find all of these disturbing photographs?

2. Where did we go wrong that we even have to work at all? I mean we had the women's movement so that we could have the opportunity to work, but now opportunity has become necessity we're expected to DO IT ALL. I feel kinda screwed...just saying. Way too many expectations.

3. You already know this but you absolutely did the right thing. You'll have way more fun with Zoey than you would with that Turtle. Even if you have to live on cereal and hot pockets.

Petunia Face said...

Hi Everyone,
Thanks for your kind words. This post is just a sliver on the tip of the iceberg on my thoughts on working motherhood. I don't know how to be eloquent or thoughtful on the subject--it is just so tangled and emotional.

I don't know where we went wrong as a society with this, but I do think we're wrong. There is a wonderful website and organization on the subject--
It's pretty political, but I don't know how it can't be with the subject.

Anyway, thank you so much.
p.s. Mer--I usually try to link to the source of the photo. If you click on the photo it takes you to where I found it. Pretty creepy and wonderful, huh? :)

Megan said...

That job would've eaten your soul, I'm pretty certain of it. I am still certain that the perfect gig is still out there waiting for you.

Why is Jason Bateman so great? Ben Affleck, who I could normally not even give a toss about, looks funny in this too. Something to look forward to!

krista said...

i don't have anything witty or intelligent to say.
but i'm totally nodding my head with you. does that help?

muranogirl said...

I 'm relieved you were not offered that job. Seriously.
I shared yesterday's post with my 14 year old daughter. We discussed the tremendous difficulties mother's face every day.
Susannah, you will find something! Ever thought of teaching? It would not pay what the product dev. jobs in the Bay Area pay, but you would have summers off and reasonable hours. The private art/fashion schools are always looking for those with industry experience - VERY important. A teaching credential is not required.

Rosalie said...

Aaaarrrgggh! I am so there with you with the frustration. I believe we need a DTSA Day STAT to go over every detail of this conundrum.

Kwana said...

That job and those hours sucked big time. It was not for you. Sorry. Being a working mother is so freaking hard. That the sentence does not do it justice. Fell your feeling and move onto the next interview. Crap. Grrrr...

Good Enough Woman said...

7:30 to 6:00 are crazy hours. Crazy. No time for writing and mommying. How does someone with a family work those hours? I'm going to check out that web site your mentioned. I think, perhaps, the Europeans are better on this front than we are . . . but I'm not sure.

Charlee said...

This is not a slam on Bryan, but I keep re-reading his question to you. I think because it's something my husband would have said. It feels so insensitive, like they cannot nearly understand how important it is to have the time in our children's lives. Yes, money is important, but is it worth the total sacrifice of not only missing all those moments, but the absolute rush and pressure 5 days a week? I've been there and it's the absolute worst feeling on earth. The right job will come, but have reasonable "demands" on hours is mandatory for a working Mom.

How do these people get away with working people 50+ hours per week? California has some serious laws about that.

Good luck!

Jules said...

You know my thoughts on the subject--I did my own whiny post a couple of weeks ago. I'm off to check out that website.

p.s. Good for you. Not working to spend time with Zoey is not something you will lay on your death bed and regret.

ohnomyboots said...

In response to Erienne, I'm sorry to say that I disagree. Hitting rock bottom sucks, but there's always falling through and hitting molten lava, core of the earth...then you disintegrate. I say this because I feel like I've hit rock bottom recently and it makes me feel better to think it could be worse.

PS I think that job would have sucked and made not only you, but Zoey and Bryan (spelling?) miserable.

Michelle said...

First off, great photo, second, Good FOR YOU! Fuck that schedule, fuck that boss there. You are right to be frustrated, I would be, I would be doing the run-while-crying-and cursing routine. Good for you for putting your daughter and your sanity first. Your solution will come, sooner or later, because you are making good choices.

erin said...

Dont you think that 'where society went wrong' is that so many moms are working because they want the big house, the suv, the starbucks, the anthro dress...and when they don't work they can't afford it. so, it's societies fault? no, actually it's important to have your priorities arranged so that it's okay to not work and also okay to not have a $4 coffee each morning and it's a choice. a choice. to blame it on the annonomous 'society' is not realistic - we all make our own choices. if you choose a lifestyle that needs two full time incomes to survive, and then look to others to arrange their schedules around accomodating your day care, commute,'re setting yourself up for a huge disappointment.

Petunia Face said...

I think your comment is a gross generalization of the problems that virtually all working mothers face. If only it were as simple as cutting out Starbucks and Anthro, but it's NOT. After all, some mothers actually want to work.

As for me, I sold the SUV, downsized to a smaller house. I don't go to Starbucks or to Anthro; I don't shop at all anymore. Still, without laying out our bank accounts to you, I do have to find a job. Not at my old salary, but I do need to make some money.

There are as many different scenarios as there are working mothers, and I really don't think it's fair to chalk it up to overspending or greed.

This is why I didn't want to get into the whole topic. It really is a loaded issue, and one that I am passionate about, so passionate as to get overly emotional. And angry.

Just curious erin--are you a working mother? A stay at home mom? I'm curious where you are in the mix?


Anonymous said...

Wow Erin you struck a chord with me.
I quit my job almost 2 years ago to be a more engaged mother and make some sense of our crazy, busy life. At that time we all learned to live with less:
no dining out except for special occasion, no cleaning lady, no Whole Foods, no Anthro, brewed coffee only, (I hate the taste of Starbucks) no frivolous spending. Thank goodness we bought in 1995 before things went bat shit crazy. It was all worth it to scale back. Fast forward 2 years:my husband's restaurants are doing 60% of what they did, our 401k's are blown to hell and things are not looking up. So what to do? Go back to work and try to hold on? That 's the predicament many women/mother's are in.
Your comment just seems a little mean spirited.
I don't know any mothers who work from 8-6, 7, 8 pm unless they have fabulous paid help or 6 extended family members living under their roof to pick up the slack.

erin said...

i am a working mother. i work 3/4 time, two full days (9 hours) and one half day per week. my daughter and i are on my husbands healthcare plan, and we have one car. we use public transportation every day, and often leave the car at home for days at a time while we take the bus. and we live in a city about the same size as SF, so it's easy to do. also, our co-op day care is in our neighborhood and we (all the moms) share early drop off/late pick up from each others homes when one of us has to go to work early/stay late.

most of my friends are working mothers, some even have twins. we all work, but rarely do we work full time and although we all did work full time before kids, we've adjusted our lives and expectations to work half or 3/4 time now. we are all professionals with bachelors/masters degrees in our fields, and work our asses off because we choose to.

i guess the gist of it is that yes, it's hard. it's a sacrifice to have children, which is why not everyone does it. but the world did not stop spinning or re-align itself when i had my daughter to make it easier for me. if you can't make a full time work schedule work for you, maybe you can find a 3/4 time job that accomodates day care, etc.?

Anonymous said...

for god's sake susannah, why don't you turn off comment moderation and let people have a discussion about issues you raise here? soooooo frustrating!!

annie w. said...

i think you mentioned that zoey could only be in daycare from 9-5? so that means actually you can work from 9:45ish to 4:15ish at the latest? and you're applying for a full time position with companies who are very clear with their hours up front? you're wasting their time and yours if you have these requirements and don't say so before the 3rd interview. as a business owner, i would be PISSED if i went all the way to a third interview and possible job offer with a candidate in mind only to be told 'by the way, i can't get here before 9:30, and then need to leave at 4:15 every day...that's okay, right? i mean i have this daughter and can you make an exception for me?" i would feel like you've totally wasted my time, and would be VERY upset. it is a complete waste of my time to interview you if i think you're interested in the job as i've presented it to you, only to find out later you only want the job on your own terms.

when people chose to have children, it is also expected that they make adjustments in their lifestyle to accomodate those choices. others should not be expected to accomodate you, they can be asked, but not expected to do so.

Petunia Face said...

Annie W.--just to be clear, I could work 9 to 5, at the office at 9, out at 5, and I said I would be more than willing to work from home at night via internet/email, which is something I've always done for my job, even before I had kids. I don't go out to lunch. I eat at my desk. I get the job done. Period.

Obviously, this was not the job for me, both because of the issues it raised for me as a mother and frankly, because of other issues, as well.

Whatever. I'm on vacation in Vegas right now with family. :)


Anonymous said...

black 32
red 54

good luck lady...

moseyalong said...

I've been waffling on and off about writing about the working mom situation. I touched on it in a post in January, but haven't tackled it head on. There are so many of us out here with amazing skills, but having to settle for "less" career-wise, or reinvent our careers altogether just so we can also parent our kids.

I sympathize. I'm a part-time WAHM. My former career (9-7) wasn't willing to take a chance on flexible schedules, and then I ended up getting laid off anyway. We're getting by on my husband's salary mostly, with some side income from me. I'm grateful, but occasionally bitter.

I hope the best possible situation comes along for you.