My “Co-Workers”

If my kids were people who I worked with:

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I’m a stay at home mom.  Many people think I don’t have much in common with those of us that go to work.  But when my friends and family talk about work, I often think how similar it sounds to my day at home.  Last week was a little crazy-making for me, and I was starting to fray.  Maybe just the end of the school year is near, and everyone needs a change.  I don’t know.  As I mediated the 87th dispute of the day, it occurred to me that if this were a paying job, no one would be paid enough to make it worth it.  Then I realized that if my kids were my coworkers, it would be a ridiculously awful place to work.  The parallel becomes complicated when I wonder where I fit into the office dynamic.  I mean, I’m certainly the boss, and assert myself most of the time, but if this WERE an office situation, I would sound like the worst boss on the planet!!!  “Coworker” fits best, but of course we are not on the same level.  Maybe, as much as I hate to say it, I have 6 bosses (5 kids and the puppy).

So let’s try it on for size.  Wherever I would write the word “kid”, replace it with “coworker.”  Here are some highlights of this week:

I was sexually harassed daily (or hourly):  Coworker mooned me in the kitchen for the 3rd time today, accompanied by loud farting noises.  I’m also frequently groped, spanked, and, naked coworkers occasionally try to crawl into bed with me.

I’m on call 24/7.  And often do get a call at exactly 1:32 am many nights.

One coworker still demands I follow him into the bathroom and talks to me nonstop while he poops, and then loudly demands I wipe him.

My coworkers won’t let me poop alone, often accompanying me into the bathroom, rattling the door knobs, or walking in if I make the mistake of forgetting to lock myself in.

I am basically responsible for every minor detail and job in the office, and my coworkers have 1 daily task that I have to remind them to do.  Every day.

It takes me longer to get my coworkers to do their work than it is for me to just do it for them.  They don’t notice.

Today my coworker bit another coworker.  And then bit the dog.

I asked one coworker today to do some landscaping.  He turned around and got his visiting friend to do it for him.

There are often extra “workers” around (I use this word extra loosely).  They don’t get paid nor do they work but they demand benefits.

I rarely leave the workplace.  At 5 o’clock the job gets more demanding.

Often I have to make sure my coworkers don’t get hit by cars as they go out for breaks.

One coworker gets into my lunch and eats it.  Sometimes without me knowing, but sometimes he just takes food right off my plate.  They all leave the lunch room a disaster.  Sure, I can call them all back to clean it, but I’m just the nagging boss.

I have one coworker that likes to rile up the others.  He does this by hitting, teasing, and trying to start protests.

I know I’m making it sound glamorous, and indeed it is.  I remind them all of meetings, appointments, and breaks.  If they have off-campus meetings I am in charge of driving them while they demand extra snacks, treats if they behave, and of course, stopping by the side of the interstate while they either have to pee or get a new seating assignment to stop colleague bickering.  I threaten to quit or fire them frequently, but there are laws against this.  The best part is, this is no 40 hour a week gig!  To be fair, they usually do something super cute to make me forget my empty threats.  And, contrary to real workplace environments, falling asleep is highly encouraged and they turn back into little angels!

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