Sunday, March 3, 2013

I added another "hat" to my wardrobe.

When I fell pregnant with my first child in 1995, I was the Supervisor of Operations, Financial Services, St. George Bank. I even had a business card, and an office. My first. I loved my job. I had started at St. George when I was 20, as a teller, and then moved to head office, working as a administration clerk in first the Visa department, then the Financial Services Department. I quickly worked through the ranks - first 2-i-c, then Supervisor.

Falling pregnant wasn't in "the plan". I was on the "career path", not the motherhood path. OK, yes I know, its possible to have both. But this is my story. OK?

When I gave birth to Laura, all thoughts about career very literally fell out of my head, as I fell in love with this amazing gift I had been given. So when I was promoted to Manager of the department while I was on maternity leave, with a healthy pay rise, I was surprised, and thankful, but my internal dialogue was going "thank you very much, I'm incredibly honoured that you think I'm capable, but yeah - that career path I was on... well, its not the path I want anymore".

But me, being me, knew that I needed to experience first hand if that was really the case, and even though my gut was screaming "Abort Will Robertson", I cut my maternity leave short to 4 months, left Laura home with her father (who was still trying to figure out what he wanted to do when he grew up, so he left work to look after her) and returned to the "career path". For 8 weeks, in between meetings - oh the fucking endless meetings, staff training sessions, and my own management training workshops, I sat in the women's toilets and pumped two 240 ml feeds into bottles while holding a picture of my baby girl. I still have the milk spattered photo.

For 7 months, I came home each night, exhausted beyond belief, and cried, while her father made empty promises of bringing her into work more often. A month before Laura turned one, I handed in my resignation, with a months notice, came home and told him that he had to find a job.

On Laura's first birthday I began my journey as a full time stay at home mum. That's the job I did for the next 8 years. When Laura was 8, and Nathan 5, I worked part-time for an artist and his wife at their gallery as their PA for two years. The beauty of this job was not only was I surrounded by beautiful pieces of art, it was always during school hours. This meant that Laura and Nathan were never affected by me being at work. They were at school, and where unaffected by what I was doing, well, lets be honest, as far as they were concerned, out of sight, out of mind!

Europe, and all it had to offer, beckoned my employers, which meant unfortunately for me, I was out of a job. Fast forward 8 years and another child to February this year.

Since moving to Brisbane from the Sunshine Coast, I have been looking for work. I naively thought it wouldn't be a problem. While it has made life a little difficult not having work, it was good in the respect that it allowed me to be available for my kids as we all settled into living in suburbia.

In November last year I happened to be in an Art and Craft supply shop (my candy shop!), and overheard that they were looking for employees. I dropped my resume in, and ... well heard nothing. The manager I had given it to had apparently left the next day. I was somewhat disheartened, and more then a little disillusioned. I was already spiralling into the hole, this was just another thing to push me down there.

After Christmas I popped into my candy shop to pick up some paper, and decided to go out on a limb and ask what had happened to my resume. Serendipity stepped in. It turned out the the lovely lady I was talking to, was the new manager. Two weeks later, she rang me and asked if I was still interested in a job. Abso-friggin-lutely!!!

The floor at where I work. Pretty cool hey?

I've added another hat to my already bulging wardrobe of hats: cook, cleaner, mediator, taxi driver, healer, counsellor, partner, mother, artist, etc etc etc. This one has employee on it. I very luckily landed a permanent part time position, and started in February.  (Which is why its been rather quiet in here of late.)

To say the least, it has been very interesting times in my house, as we all adjust to this new regime. I guess the saying is true. The only thing that is constant, is change.

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