Being a stay at home mom is a lot like sweatshop labor. We are on duty twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, often with little or no sleep. We are not offered the benefits of vacations, sick days, unions, or employee appreciation days. The one benefit is that for years our positions as sole caretaker of the household is secure and uncontested.
Then our kids grow up and we suddenly become obsolete, cast back into the rough waters of unemployment.
Despite our indisputable success and achievements as stay-at-home mothers (hey, our kids are alive, aren’t they?), our resumes now need more padding than a thirteen-year-old’s bra. So if you’re looking to ace your next job interview, here are some legitimate-sounding job titles that are sure to impress.
1. Waste management technician- Being a mom is 20% actual parenting and 80% cleaning up excrement. We wipe butts, wash soiled sheets and underwear, scrape feces off the floors and walls (we don’t ask), and shower sick children after diarrheal pyrotechnics worthy of an ‘80s metal band.
2. Entrepreneurial short order cook- Not only do we moms cook three meals simultaneously, we do it all within the three minutes between the toddler’s announcement that he’s “starving” and his decision that whatever we made is “super dooper yucky.” We discover creative ways to toast bread and melt cheese faster than the laws of grilled-cheese-physics allow, and we do it in the shape of Darth Vader.
3. Subversive nutritionist- Have you ever tried to convince a toddler to eat broccoli with nothing but a smile and your good intentions? You might as well be asking them to eat dirt, dog food, the contents of their own diaper….or something a toddler actually thinks is gross. The point is, you have to finesse the transaction, make them think they’re getting something they want while secretly sneaking in the nutrition. I am a vegetable-smuggling ninja.
4. Riot Control Specialist- You know those images from war demonstrations where protesters lay down in front of armed tanks to stop them from occupying the streets? Those are my children every time I try to take them to the grocery store. They would happily chain themselves to a tree, go on a hunger strike, or douse themselves in gasoline (if only they could figure out how to remove the child-safety-cap). I’ve considered tear-gas canisters, but that seems a bit redundant.
5. Tantrum negotiator- Every good negotiator has to know when to bend and when to stay tough. Likewise, every mom knows that asking a toddler to kindly relinquish her purse and stop using it a hammer will inevitably end with the loss of at least one of the expensive items of makeup he is holding hostage. We moms are not above bribing, lying, begging, pleading, or reverse psychology to end the stand-off peacefully. Go ahead, throw my keys in the toilet. I didn’t want to go to the toy store and buy you ALL the toys today anyway.
6. Fecal frequency monitor/analyst- Moms are better at scrutinizing poop than any biologist, anthropologist, or zoologist. We may not be able to remember when we last showered, but we keep running tallies of every bowel movement our child makes, along with catalogs of color, consistency, size, and the name of every stupid person who fed the baby blueberries…again.
Armed with your newly padded resume, there will no longer be a need to explain away large gaps left in your work history by your choice to stay home with your children. Potential employers will be dazzled by your productivity and versatility. So, if you’re ready to move beyond cutting crusts, carpools, and Caillou, add a few of these highly professional-sounding experiences to your resume and the job offers will come knocking like your kids when you’re using the toilet.
*This post originally appeared on In the Powder Room