My daughter has said some things recently that have made me wonder whether it is such a good idea to let her see me chat on the phone and eff around on the computer all day. She and a friend were once playing Mom and Dog, and when I saw her on the couch with her feet up flipping through Newsweek, I asked her what she was doing and she said, I'm the mom. She has said things like, You don't have a job. and You don't work. and it got me to thinking about why I am the way I am (read: lazy) and I came up with a theory.
I have great mom, a fantastic, generous, beautiful, healthy, fit vivacious mom. But she was also the product of her times, and although she did work when we were growing up, her jobs always seemed temporary, mind-numbing, and only necessary to bring in a little extra dough. She didn't start a career until I was 15 and my brother was out of the house, and my guess is she never entertained the idea of getting a college degree. It was clear that her jobs were necessary, but not valuable. My dad would never, in one million years, have stayed home from work to take care of a sick kid, so guess who would? As awesome as it was to have had a mom that was home when I came home from school, even if I had no idea how awesome it was at the time, I am now wondering whether not having a working mother as a role model was not such a good idea. Although, saying that out loud seems crazy; lots of people I know had moms who stayed home, and they're the same people who are ambitious and hard-working and who take fewer than one nap a day. (My mom would probably like me to mention here that, even though she was often "just" a housewife, she actually spent her days cleaning her house until it gleamed, making her own clothes, and actually cooking dinner every night. She would probably also like to make it clear that she did not raise me to be a slob, and hereby absolves herself from any responsibility for my slovenliness. I'm just guessing.)
I'm concerned that, at eight years old, it may be too late to embed into my kid that working for a living is the default position. Of course, having to buy her own tampons and pay her own rent one of these days might give her a clue regardless of whether I have a job right now or not. She wasn't alive when I had my career and was too little to notice when I was the primary bread-winner of this family, and - am I ruining her? Is she gonna be like me? God, I hope not.
And how do I show a kid how to go after her dreams and reach for the stars if I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up? I do not want to go back to what I did before, and, hence, I am pondering next steps.
What do you guys think I should do with my life?