MIND the GAP

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One reader wrote this piece about her experience back in the work world.  

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MIND the GAP

It sits there on my resume – the gap.  How to explain the ten year space of time where it appears I did nothing.  I didn’t take a slight turn off the path of my career – I put on the brakes and derailed for ten years.  

I have to say it was one of the sweetest times of my life.  I embraced that time – co-op preschool, Mom’s group, splash pools in the backyard, homemade play dough, quesadillas.  My tools were sunscreen, a pizza cutter and an apple slicer.  

The days slipped by, my girls grew up and my son hit preschool.  The economy took a dive.  I took a breath and saw that ten years had gone by and I started to think about work again. I felt foolish to have let that much time get behind me.  Foolish and insecure. My husband’s work had slowed down and I had no way of picking up the slack. What if something happened to him or our marriage fell apart? I would have no way to support my family. The industry I left had completely changed. When I left the workforce, Bill Clinton was claiming he did not sleep with that girl and now Bush number two was ending his second term.  I was forty and no longer fresh. I got lucky and a friend gave me a job and a chance.  

But I still have to hide the gap.  No one really respects the gap.  I avoid the question, what did you do before you worked here?  The truth is the fact that I grew up in those ten years.  My children raised me.  They found me my best friends, taught me patience and how to deal with difficult people.  I didn’t lean in and occasionally now I look back and am horrified.  What was I thinking????  I have two girls and what I want for them it to lean in, but also to lean back.  Make time for splash pools and homemade play dough, but be sure to mind the gap. 

 

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