Wednesday, November 4, 2015

When I Grow Up

The holiday season is here again and that means I'll be entertaining friends & family over dry ass turkey and $5 wine apple cider. My kids and their cousins will run wild with reckless abandon and I'll be smiling through gritted teeth as they narrowly avoid the one good lamp we have left in the house. At some point, my husband & I will get in to a ridiculous argument about who was supposed to pick up the Honeybaked Ham and then ignore one another for the rest of the day while trying to play nice in front of the others. I'll eventually stab him (lightly) with a fork and then we'll say grace. It's the stuff of Rockwell paintings, I tell ya.

Unfortunately, as I'm doing all of this familial hobnobbing I'll also be stuttering my way through mindless small talk and trying to remember which relatives don't know that I'm a potty mouthed troll yet - that circle is getting smaller every damn day, by the way - as I run the gamut of acceptable chit chat. 

No matter how expertly I steer the conversation though, I always encounter at least one well meaning counterpart that insists on counseling me on my future plans, like I'm some hard headed GED recipient who's thiiiiiiiis close to turning her life around after a rough patch in the mean streets (*cough* of the suburb I grew up in).

Something about Ashton being in big kid school now must make me seem like some lazy bump on a log with no direction. So most conversations I have end up coming around to my oh-so favorite: 

What are you going to do with yourself now? Yep, the 10 million dollar question. 

This one is a stay-at-home parent’s kryptonite. Just when you think you’re entertaining someone that “gets” your struggle, identifies with your uniquely erratic daily schedule, they flip the script on you. 

I’ll admit, I’ve struggled in the past, to piece together an answer that pleases everyone. I want to appear responsible and ambitious but apparently, my current “occupation” leaves much to be desired because I’m always questioned about what I’d like to do “when I grow up” and the kids are gone. Since it's so important to me that I consider everyone’s feelings and finally give them a response that makes sense, I’ve put a lot of thought into it and I actually came up with a few really good options of how I can spend my days (in a few short years when PJ goes to school). I’m honestly surprised these had never occurred to me before - not only do they give me a chance to make a real financial contribution to the house, I’ll get back that old sense of self and look like an adult again to all of the important people in my life.

Follow along with me as I take you through Brittni’s Top 5 List of Things I Want to Be…When My Kids Leave Me Alone:

#1 – Mall Train Conductor – This one hit me (almost literally) as I was walking to Macy’s the other day on my search of just the right mom jeans for a night out with my husband. Strolling along, I abruptly hear a loud honk and spun out of the way just in time to miss a speeding (3 mph) locomotive in the Stride Rite district. That’s it, I thought. If there’s one thing I’ve felt I missed out on lately, it’s travel. This way, I’d get to see the sights (all the way from Bloomingdale’s to the Food Court), and bypass paying for a plane ticket. Not to mention I’d get an awesome fucking hat. #AccessoriesAreEverything

#2 – Crossing Guard – My 3 year old son pointed out the other day, after we’d dropped off the big girl to school, that the woman standing on the corner and getting everyone’s attention was very pretty. 

I looked up quizzically to be sure the community hadn’t been invaded by prostitutes in the night, but was relieved to find an orange-vested matron with a light stick and white gloves pausing traffic so that a group of 5th graders could make their way onto the sidewalk. I was amazed at the power she had to literally stop a car in its tracks. She had vehicles backed up for half a block at her whim, I couldn’t even get the kids to stop fighting over a broken flashlight (that neither one of them really wanted) the night before. That’s what I needed, that type of influence; for people to look up at me – because they’re literally sitting beneath me in their car – and yield to my every gesture and desire. It’s like being queen...but of a crosswalk. If there’s one thing I could get used to, it’s the royal treatment at 7:30 in the morning, this one was definitely high on my list.

#3 – Housekeeper – I know what you’re thinking: You want to clean up after a bunch of little brats that don’t know where dirty underwear goes after a shower, haven’t you had your fill of that?! And you’re right, if I wanted to be some regular housekeeper, that’d be strange. But I don’t.

I want to be a TV housekeeper (or TVHo, if you will),  just like Alice from The Brady Bunch or Florence from The Jeffersons. TV housekeepers don’t clean 1 year old vomit in the middle of the night, they make a roast and family sits happily down and marvels over it’s deliciousness. TVHos don’t fuss with a 5 year old about why it’s inappropriate to slide down the bannister on a couch cushion, they engage in comical sassy banter with the man of the house all the while, lightly dusting a priceless family heirloom. TVHos do the least and get the most recognition, that’s something I’ve aspired to for YEARS. If I know one thing, it’s that I’d make a fantastic TVHo.

#4 – Rap video model – Let me be honest here, I am a gangsta. Hardcore thug mama, in the hizzouse, right here, baby. And as such, I’ve always had an ear for ratchet, artistic tunes. What better way to show my respect for the genre than to bring my ample derriere to the stage. Standing around dancing to the melodies of aging rappers in a bandage dress that’s two sizes too small, what is not to love?! And I’ve already got the wardrobe, half of my clothes are too small anyway! #ImReady

5 – Neurosurgeon – Yeah, you read that right. I’m intrigued at the idea of finally being able to get into my husband’s brain and figure out how a grown man still hasn’t mastered the art of washing a sink full of dirty dishes unless nagged for 2 days. I know the answer is in there somewhere, and I’m willing to open him up to find out.

I'm so glad I've managed to put this question to bed once and for all. I can finally get back to what this time of year is really about - candy corn and Motown's Greatest Christmas Hits album. God bless the holiday season…and all the nosey people it brings. Happy holidays!


Playground rules apply: Speak the way you'd like to be spoken to and if you don't play nice, I'm kicking you off my monkey bars.