What if we had to apply for the job of being a parent the same way we apply for other jobs? Here’s a sample job description that one parent sent to me. It may be one of the funniest things I’ve ever read:
Mom, Mommy, Mama, Ma
Dad, Daddy, Dada, Pa, Pop
Long-term team players needed for challenging, permanent work in an often chaotic environment. Candidates must possess excellent communication skills and be willing to work variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends and frequent 24-hour shifts on call. Some overnight travel required, including trips to primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in far away cities. Travel expenses not reimbursed. Extensive courier duties also required.
The rest of your life.
Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily, until someone needs $10. Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly. Also must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule and be able to go from zero to 60 in three seconds flat in case, this time, the screams from the backyard are not someone just crying wolf. Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges, such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zippers. Must be able to screen phone calls, maintain calendars, and coordinate production of multiple homework projects.
Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings for clients of all ages and mental outlooks. Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, and an embarrassment the next. Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices. Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst. Must assume final, complete responsibility for the quality of the end product. Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and janitorial work throughout the facility.
Possibility For Advancement and Promotion
Your job is to remain in the same position for years without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills, so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you
None required, unfortunately.
On the job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.
Wages and Compensation
Get this! You pay them! Offering frequent raises and bonuses. A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because of the assumption that college will help them become financially independent. When you die, you give them whatever is left. The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.
While no health or dental insurance, no pension, no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered, this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth, unconditional love, and free hugs and kisses for life if you play your cards right.
Footnote: There is no retirement – ever!
An amazing job, isn’t it? Who would apply for it? Don’t you agree with me that this job description should be required reading for all men thinking about the priesthood? Celibacy never looked so good!
My conclusion? Well, to paraphrase a famous commercial: “The cost of children? Very, very, very expensive.
The value of children? Priceless.