[Nfbc-info] Not Just Another Mother

nancy Lynn seabreeze.stl at gmail.com
Sun May 14 09:29:15 UTC 2017

Not Just Another Mother
A few months ago when I was picking up the children at school,
another mother I knew well rushed up to me.  Emily was fuming
with indignation.

"Do you know what you and I are?" she demanded.

Before I could answer, and I didn't really have one handy, she
blurted out the reason for her question.

It seemed she had just returned from renewing her driver's
license at the County Clerk's office.  Asked by the woman
recorder to state her occupation, Emily had hesitated, uncertain
how to classify herself.

"What I mean is," explained the recorder, "Do you have a job, or
are you just a .....?"

"Of course I have a job," snapped Emily.

"I'm a mother."

"We don't list 'mother' as an occupation...
'housewife' covers it," said the recorder emphatically.

I forgot all about her story until one day I found myself in the
same situation, this time at our own Town Hall.

The Clerk was obviously a career woman, poised, efficient, and
possessed of a high-sounding title like official Interrogator or
Town Registrar.

"And what is your occupation?" she probed.

What made me say it, I don't know.  The words simply popped out.

"I'm a Research Associate in the field of Child Development and
Human Relations."

The clerk paused, ball-point pen frozen in midair, and looked up
as though she had not heard right.

I repeated the title slowly, emphasizing the most significant
words.  Then I stared with wonder as my pompous pronouncement
was written in bold, black ink on the official questionnaire.

"Might I ask," said the clerk with new interest, "just what you
do in your field?"

Coolly, without any trace of fluster in my voice, I heard myself
reply, "I have a continuing program of research (what mother
doesn't) in the laboratory and in the field (normally I would
have said indoors and out).

I'm working for my Masters (the whole darned family) and already
have four credits (all daughters)."

"Of course, the job is one of the most demanding in the
humanities (any mother care to disagree?) and I often work 14
hours a day (24 is more like it).  But the job is more
challenging than most run-of-the-mill careers and the rewards
are in satisfaction rather than just money."

There was an increasing note of respect in the clerk's voice as
she completed the form, stood up, and personally ushered me to
the door.

As I drove into our driveway, buoyed up by my glamorous new
career, I was greeted by my lab assistants - ages 13, 7, and 3.

Upstairs, I could hear our new experimental model (6 months) in
the child-development program testing out a new vocal pattern.

I felt triumphant!

I had scored a beat on bureaucracy!  I had gone on the official
records as someone more distinguished and indispensable to
mankind than "just another mother."

Motherhood...what a glorious career.

Especially when there's a title on the door.

Send this to another Mother you know.
Whether a stay-at-home Mom or a career Mom,
we should all carry this title.
Author Unknown~

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