Monday, January 9, 2012

Got a Job

It's Monday- Listicle day! This week is quite a different topic if I do say so myself.  Top Ten Strange (odd/unusual/funny/interesting) Jobs you have held in your life courtesy of Varda at the Squashed Bologna

She did give the disclaimer: And if you are young or have had a much less varied life than I have and haven't had 10 jobs yet, then make it 10 interesting things you have done / tasks you have been responsible for as PART of a job. And I am totally willing to define "Job" loosely here... as in parenting is clearly a job, and so is being a student, or volunteer positions including things like PTA President.
Thus leaving me to think back into the far depths of my mind, trying to remember what "jobs" I have held. I decided to tackle this chronologically, and it has been a trip down memory lane indeed.

1. Eraser Smacker
I went to Catholic school from Kindergarten through fourth grade. I actually wrote about my attempt to save time in the morning with my uniform , but in reality I was a good girl, a really good girl in school. Smart and studious, often I finished my seat work prior to most of the others and usually completed it with little error. My desk was typically kept orderly and I never was reprimanded for talking out of turn or for being disrespectful. As a reward, on Friday afternoon, while the rest of the class would clean their desks, I (and a friend) would get to go outside with the collection of dusty erasers and bang them together.
Pure bliss!

Living in suburbia in a development filled with families gave my mother ample opportunity to pimp my sister and I out as daycare providers. Quite a number of my new year's were spent in someone else's homes listening to their children sleep and many weekend evenings were spent cuddled on someone else's couch again waiting. While my babysitting days were limited, my sister continued through college being that "dependable, reliable source".

3. Swim Instructor
Imagine that?
I swam competitively. Spent the majority of my adolescent years in or around a swimming pool, thus the logical step would be to teach swimming. From 13 years when I began volunteering to my early 20's, I spent hours blowing bubbles, coaxing crying children, and freezing after hours in tepid water. From infants to adults, I taught them all and frankly I was darn good at it!

4. Life Guard 
I feel I must start with the position that there is a clear distinction between lifeguard and swim instructor, especially at a suburban YMCA outdoor pool.
Baywatch, it was not.
Besides the lack of hot guys running on the beach and thankfully the inappropriate swim suits, most of the guards were stoned out college kids playing sober every morning while they vacuumed the pool and cleaned out the bathrooms. Sure, they blew their whistles every now and then, but for the most part it was about the social life after hours, of which I was not really interested. '
I did get a pretty kick ass tan though those years.

5. Teacher's Assistant 
My first summer after college, a family friend helped me get a job in the field of education.
Eagerly, I started at a reform school for boys.
Yup, me at the ripe old age of 18 was working as a teacher's assistant in a class of boys committed for a variety of offenses such a repeated truancy, drugs and theft, while a few were placed for lack of foster families.
I was significantly out of my comfort zone.
However, that opportunity of working with a well seasoned nun in that environment led me to learn a lot.

6. Student Senator: College of Education
Bryan was very involved with our college's student government. First as a member of the Student Senate and later he was elected Student Government president. I base much of his victory on my pull with the student athlete population.
I dabbled a bit too in the political arena, mainly due to apathy.
My junior year Bry came to me asking if I would be interested in applying for an open seat on the Senate representing the school of Education. I applied, and was appointed.
What did I do?
Not much, I must admit.
It did look pretty good on my professional resume.

7. Alcoholic Awareness Panel Member
My freshmen year of college, there were some concerns among my swim team with body imagine and eating disorders. In response, we were forced to meet with counseling services individually and as a group to ensure we were all on the straight and narrow. It was during this time I met Shirley, one of the counselors.
My senior year, as part of a grant, she was facilitating a project in which college students would go to high school health classes to discuss the realities of alcohol on a college campus. As a panel member, I would offer my own experience and exchange get paid for it. There weren't many money making opporuntities for myself during college due to my schedule between swim practice, student teaching and classes, so those extra bucks were quite welcome.

8.Kindergarten Teacher
Almost the antithesis of item #5, I spent four years in the Kindergarten classroom. First as a self-contained Kindergarten teacher and then two years of bliss as a Kindergarten teacher.
There truly is nothing like that job, nothing.
Teacher, mama, police officer, artisan, librarian, nurse, singer, dancer, comedian, poet, actress, the list of job descriptors could go on and on.

9. First Grade Teacher
The spring of 2005, the principal of my building confirmed I was moving to first grade. I was terrified.
I am not exaggerating when I say that I had greater trepidation about teaching first grade then my nuptials, which were held in October of that year. The enormity in my eyes laid in my belief that first grade was the core foundation for the rest of ones education. Kindergarten was a relative playground compared to first grade, where expectations were high for formal introduction to:
Mathematical thinking!
My fear easily gave way to adoration of the grade I feel I was born to teach. To this day, the greatest sense of accomplishment I have had outside my own family, has been directly related to my time in the first grade classroom.

10. Mother
What other job could take this cake?
The job I hold now is  filled with diaper blow-outs, sloppy kisses, and random ukulele serenades. I have my fill of goldfish crackers, apple juice and grilled cheese sandwiches. No day is ever the same and I couldn't imagine myself anywhere else right now...

except maybe here
 St. Barths
Someday we will meet again

Join in!


  1. I could picture myself on a beach too :) Great list of jobs! It is so interesting to see what other experiences everyone has had!

  2. cannot believe I left babysitter off my list! that's usually every girls' first job. so many New Year's Eve spent watching sappy holiday movies and eating someone else's popcorn!
    Lifeguard would be the "job that got away" for me. Have always wanted to do that!

  3. Only you can make #1 sound so fab I want to grab some erasers right now! I think you must make a great teacher!

  4. I always love to hear that teachers love their jobs! One of the hardest jobs around. Thanks for taking care of our kids, Jackie! :)

  5. I'm thinking about the phrase "well seasoned nun" and it makes me laugh for all kinds of inappropriate reasons. I never think about nuns being seasoned...more like hermetically sealed. But then again, I don't know a lot of nuns. :)

  6. That beach looks lovely.
    Had to laugh at the erasers - that's totally the kind of kid I was! And I LOVED getting to do jobs like that!

  7. My mom was a first grade teacher for years, too and she LOVED it. I don't think I could handle that many kids at one time! I like them one on one. (That way I don't get outnumbered.)

  8. Great list, Deborah's comment has me LOLing. See you on the beach

  9. What a fabulous list. I love your descriptions. But I have to ask....just HOW real were you with the high school kids about college drinking? I'm sure you did a great job, you just have to wonder how much teenagers will actually soak in and take to heart!

  10. I was always so scared to teach the younger grades!

  11. Haha, eraser smacker! You are brilliant to do this so you could go outside :)
    I would love to be on that beach right now!

  12. I can always picture myself on the beach. I can't believe eraser smacker was a reward. I always thought of that as punishment. :)

  13. I could take a day on the beach too! I bet you were the best eraser beater there was!


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