March 19, 2013

In Which Becoming SuperMommy Has An Epic Freakout

My current co-workers don't know I have plans to change positions.
The last time I had a job interview, it was 2007.

I was young, smart, sharp. And I knew for a fact I had the job before I walked through the door. In fact, the interview was purely a formality. The job had been invented for me. I knew I was going to rock it.

And so I did, and my job began.

And then M was diagnosed with brain cancer a few short weeks later, and I resigned to take care of him.

That was the last time I had a job interview.

Since then, I've gained twenty five pounds (it looks worse than it sounds), had three kids, finished my degree, and done... very little that can go on a resume.

In four and a half years, I haven't had to look professional once. 80% of my clothing have tears, rips, stains, paint splotches, or just generally look like they're falling apart. That's because they are. They are LITERALLY sewn together with bits of string, mostly by hand, in my free moments.

This is my wardrobe, people.

But the fact is, I have marketable skills. I have useful experience. I am still a totally awesome choice for pretty much any position in a non-profit- I'm awesome. And I don't have any reservations saying so. See what I did there? You totally want to hire me.

So why am I having a meltdown of doom?

Maybe it was realizing that my "interview clothes" are COMPLETELY inappropriate given my nursing related breast enhancements. Wow, it's not even cool. I mean, I look awesome. but maybe for a nice, romantic dinner. NOT for an interview.

Maybe it was realizing that I have managed to give away or toss out ALL my lipstick in the last three years. Perhaps during the great makeup cull resulting from the nail polish apocalypse. Who knows.

Maybe it was noticing for the first time in a wave of mortality realizing narcissism, "Holy crap I have a wrinkle." I know. It's absurd.

Whatever it was, I am FREAKING OUT.

Do I have pantyhose? No. No I do not.

Do I have an outfit picked out? Sort of. But yeah, it's stitched together by hand in a quick effort to look presentable, and yeah, it's partially held together by safety pins.

I am so nervous I am actually breaking out. That's right, I have a wrinkle AND pimples.

And as I panic harder and faster, as the interview draws nearer and nearer, I keep asking myself...

Is this the right thing to do for my family? For my kids? Is going back to work, now, full time, really what I want?

As though to highlight the sacrifices of childrearing that going back to work entails, my interview is forcing me to miss my kids' preschool's Passover Seder.

I'm actually going to miss something I really care about with my kids, because of work, and I don't have a job yet.

And so, I am panicking. If I didn't have littles all over the place, I would be trying on outfit after outfit, I would be obsessively rechecking my route to and from the interview. I would be putting my head between my knees and hyperventilating.

I know that the job is mine for the taking. I know that. And I also know that if my heart isn't 100% in this, if I don't go in with the confidence that this is a job I WANT, and a job I'm going to GET, I am not getting that job.

T-36 hours and counting.

Wish me luck.


  1. Try not to sweat it. You MAY not get the job, and the choice will be taken out of your hands (win/win). You may get offered the job, but may decide not to take it (win/win). You may be offered the job and it may feel so right that you worry less about the impact on your family (win/win). I see no down side to this interview. So, chill :-)

  2. ^--- Wise words.

  3. Good Luck! Just remember how you went into your last one..."you got this" and as long as your breast feeding enhanced marvelous upper body isn't falling out, and no safety pins are showing, don't sweat it :) And, I also have pimples AND wrinkles, so remember you're NOT the only one :)

  4. Good luck...I am finding myself in a similar situation, considering going to graduate school after years at home. Coming up with a resume took some ingenuity!

  5. Sending you lots of luck. You go into that interview and be yourself - they will see past any clothing disappointments and know that you are the person they need.

  6. I totally feel your pain... after living for 4 years on one income and having kids, my clothes are also SO shabby! If it makes you feel any better... I'll tell YOU a story! So I was approached about an awesome summer internship last summer with a great local architecture firm. Their Interior Designer met me at my student show and had emailed me afterward and asked if I might be interested in coming to meet with them (WOW! How awesome is that!?!) I pulled out my best (only!) interview outfit... a pair light linen wide-legged pants (it was June and warm), the jacket I had found for $25 on clearance, a cami, and a $5 scarf from Payless that was at least 4 years old. Threw on some old heels that still looked nice, and off I went - toting my GINORMOUS portfolio.

    So I arrive at the firm, and it's in a mansion. A HUGE beautiful historic mansion. SQUEEEE! There are stairs to the portico, and I notice they are paved in tiny decorative stones and the edges are crumbling. So I start up the stairs carefully, with my huge portfolio over my shoulder. I'm on the second to the last stair when my heel catches in my pants leg and I go flying forward - heading face first into one of the HUGE columns of the portico! Desperate not fall on my portfolio, I lurch to the side and fall on my hands, knee and side. Every tiny pebble digs into my skin. I look up- did anyone SEE that!?! I pick myself up... thank God, I didn't tear my pants. But my hands... they are cut up and bleeding. Crap! What do I do now!?

    I rang the bell, and the Interior Designer greeted me. She asked if I would like a water before we began, and I politely asked if I might have a tissue or something as I had taken a fall on the stairs outside. She brought me one and apologized profusely for not warning me... apparently the stairs have "bitten" a lot of people. She introduced me to the owner of the firm, and I managed to shake her hand without bleeding on her. I finished the rest of the interview, hands burning, and went home to hang my head in shame. I was mortified!

    But the next day... I got a phone call. I got the internship. It was a great summer... I ended up LOVING that time away from the kids... one day per week where I could do what I wanted and just be me in my profession. I'm convinced to this day, she gave it to me on the sympathy vote. Or perhaps because I remained calm under pressure. Whatever the reason, it was GREAT.

    And I know YOU will do great and everything will go exactly how it is supposed to!



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