Category Archives: Employment

When the adult child moves back home

Middle child after climbing Mont Yongma in South KoreaMiddle child, age 24 has lived in Seoul, South Korea for the past year, she now returns home in exactly one week. For the first few weeks she will be crabby, something she, herself freely admits. Part of the problem will be the time change for her. Seoul is thirteen hours ahead of us. Her nights, are my days. For the past year, she has phoned us just before her bedtime, when we are just getting up to start our day. So when I spoke with her this morning, I asked if she would still have a morning chat with me. She responded, well if I am up feeding the dogs I will. I reminded her that her father feeds the dogs at 6:30am, her tune soon changed well I guess not then.

Well living in South Korea, middle child’s diet completely changed. She eats mostly vegetables because meat is very expensive, we eat meat a good five nights out of seven. She eats a lot of sushi, we never eat sushi. I said she could have the refrigerator in the basement to keep her food, but she didn’t seem to like that idea. She also hasn’t really eaten a lot of cheese, something she lived on when she was here, regardless of the fact, it makes her incredibly ill because she has a milk intolerance. When she was home the cheese disappeared quickly in the fridge, whereas the last package of cheese her father and I had in the fridge, went mouldy because we didn’t eat very much of it.

She has a part-time job when she returns, while she looks for a full-time job in her set career, but in the meantime, she says she will be relaxing for a few weeks, it is her retirement from teaching she tells me. Ha! I remind her that her father is 54, and will not be able to retire for another ten years, thus retirement for her at twenty-four will not happen.

When she arrives home, the first few days will be lovely, even though we have spoken with her pretty much every day since she left, it is still not the same as actually seeing and giving her a hug when she is sad. After the initial I missed you days, the screaming will probably ensue by both of us trying to learn how to live together again. I will want her to wash the dishes, and she will complain about how many coffee cups I use in a day. Eventually she will wash them, but probably not to my liking. It is a mother thing. She will leave a mess that I am not use too, I will leave a mess that she is not use too. Oh life will be fun as we learn to live together again, and not want to kill each other.

When the adult child returns home to live after being away for a year, have you experienced this?

Flying Poop

Yesterday was no different from any other day for our eldest daughter, she rose at 6 a.m., had a quick breakfast before getting ready for work. She doesn’t get dressed up for her job, its work boots, a bright orange shirt, and overalls. Her job for the summer? She cuts grass for the city using either a weed whacker or the cutter. She enjoys her job very much; she’s working outside in the fresh air, its physical labour which keep her in shape for soccer (she’s keeper).

There are a couple of issues she does have to deal with, first she is allergic to grass, trees, and outside ground mold but she has learned to deal with those allergies. Second issue, which I think is more of a problem, is dog poop.

There she is working away, and what does the weed whacker hit, not one but two bags of dog poop. Now there is flying dog poop, nowhere to run or get out-of-the-way, because it all happens in a quick second and her face is splatter with poop, lots of poop.

Dog poop

Dog poop in our backyard, which was picked up after taking this picture.

“Oh f***, where am I to get cleaned up?” There are no washrooms in this park. Ahh, she spots a puddle. That’s water from the sky, it must be better than the dog poop on her face. So there she is, splatter with dog poop, dipping the only Kleenex she can find in her pocket, washing her face. She dries her now somewhat cleaned face with her grass stained t-shirt and goes back to work.

Mom’s question: Why would someone take the time to put the dog poop in a bag, then toss it on the ground?

Daughter: “Mom, I don’t know, but this is why, when I see someone picking up after their dog, I take the time to say thank you.”

The toll of working shifts

January
January is turning out to be a very busy month for my better half. One of the guys he works with, has had to go out of town for a few weeks which means overtime, six extra shifts this month. Now that doesn’t sound like a lot, but when you work twelve hours (he is paid extra for breaks and lunch since his job does not allow him to leave the boiler room), and then throw in a few extra, your body becomes completely messed up. This week alone, instead of working just two nights, he did four, and without any days off, he is switching to days (Sunday is considered a day off since the shift started Saturday night). Thus, he worked Wednesday night, Thursday night, Friday night, and Saturday night, and tomorrow morning he will go in for a twelve hour day. Basically when he came home this morning he only slept for three or four hours, because he will be going back to bed tonight so he can get up and go to work in the morning.

Hubby and I have been together for almost thirty-one years and he has always worked shifts. Way back when, he used to work a completely insane schedule. The shifts comprised of working seven-eight hour days, two off, seven afternoons, two off, then seven nights with three days off. This rotation gave him one weekend off a month. I found it to be particularly difficult on me also; I had three kids all under the age of five and if it wasn’t for the help of my mother, I would have went crazy. Afternoons were the hardest, feeding the kids supper, clean up, cleaning them up, and putting them into bed. I’m pretty sure, I went to bed right after the kids. My one saving grace, my kids were (and still are) sleepers. All loved a good twelve hours of sleep, so bedtime was at 7 p.m.

Throughout the years, hubby has worked all different rotations, with each new job he started, there was always a new schedule to get used too. One benefit I did enjoy was him having days off during the week. On those days, he could and would gladly take kids to school, swimming, or soccer, giving me a break. When it is just you and the kids for days on end, you feel and are in some ways a single parent, because even if hubby was home, there were days he was just too exhausted to really do anything, or he was sleeping.

Hubby has worked his current shift rotation for quite a number of years, and as it worked out, he wasn’t here for Christmas, boxing day, or New Year’s eve. On Christmas, we all woke at 6 a.m. to open our gifts, then middle child drove dad to work while the rest of us went back to bed (actually I stayed up, and started work on the dinner since we were having company). When the kids were small, it was a lot more difficult; waking kids early, or having them have to wait until dad gets home, is hard when all you want to do is open presents. The kids were troopers though, and would wait, asking every few minutes, “is he on his way home mommy”, kind of like the “are we there yet”question.

The one major bonus of night shift, especially when the kids were (are) in school, is well, sex. The kids weren’t home, so the parents played!