In December 2000 I got my BS and by Sept 2001, I said “I Do!” and became a military wife. I quickly went from “Wife” status to “Mom”. On top of changing our family dynamics, we picked up and moved. From there we added dependents and had multiple duty stations spanning the US to Europe to the Middle East and then Africa.
Every two years I was packing up the house at one location, unpacking at another location and being a full time mom on top of that. Just when I thought I could micromanage everything and have time to work part time (I know, what the hell was I thinking), we would be packing up and moving again! Military life is “Groundhog year”….over and over again, just at a new duty station…and if it is not you, it is someone you because close to as soon as you arrived and they are off again. Many of us know this far too well and can write a book just on moves and friendships.
Since the kids were in school all day(starting in 2010), I have been subbing and volunteering here and there….to help make a difference and fill my pockets with some travel money. I hate when people as you “so, what do you do?” and I say I am MOM! In the past someone said “that is ALL you do?!” Like really, what do you expect, I am a military wife supporting out troops as well as a full time Mom for 3 kids. I told them, “please, let me break it down for you. I am a chauffeur, cook, cleaning, gardener, taxi driver, nanny, coordinator, CEO, hairdresser (when they gut gum stuck or tried to do their own cut), doctor, pharmacist, sculptor & artist(when helping with school projects), cheerleader, coach, travel agent, welder, plumber, toy repair, salesman, global nomad and so much more!” The person did not know what to say and in stupidity again said “yes, you you are just a mom!” It took all I had, but I held my head up high, smiled and yes “yes, I love my job!”
Now here I sit, it is 2017, we have been overseas 15+ years and I have 3 children ages 14, 12 & 10. I now have a quiet house, the cleaning and cooking are done, kids are in school all day and their afternoons consist of clubs, study-hall, sports and friends. I find things to keep me busy, but it is not satisfying personally and professionally. We are currently buying a house and the kids and I are moving to the US. To make ends meet (as we now will have to fork out mortgage, utilities and other bills), I have been job hunting online. My ideal job would be work from home so that I could give the company 110% while working around my kids’ schedules. Not only can I find on of these jobs, but the jobs that I am interested in they have not been interested in me. Saying this, one company said “you work for very short time and have large gaps in your work history”. I have tried to explain that I am a military wife, we travel around, we have not lived in the US, we move every two years and I work when I can (some countries will not let Americans work)-but they just do not understand.
I have reinvented my resume, but even I see the large gaps with sporadic work experiences. I know that I have keep busy, but on paper, it looks as if I cannot keep a job for one reason or another. Why cannot people accept “MOM” as a work title? You never see “Mom” on a resume. Most of the times, just being a full time Mom over qualifies you for the position listed.
My resume should read:
Mom & Global Nomad
Household 6, silent rank, has done everything you need and want in an employer and more.