I started working full time at McDonald’s at the beginning of December. I picked up a few substitute teaching shifts and really enjoyed that.
But McDonald’s gives me my work schedule literally the day before I need it.
The subbing jobs are usually not posted until the night before, often not until after midnight.
So I switched to evenings at the restaurant to avoid needing to be in two places at once.
Now I work until midnight four nights a week. I managed to grab a few teaching gigs in January, but by mid-month I was running out of steam.
If I’m lucky, I’m home by 12:30. Want to eat, use the bathroom, or (heaven forbid!) relax for a few? Congratulations, it’s 2am! The toddler is up by 7:30 like clockwork, and someone has to drive the 5th grader to school by 8.
Anyone who’s ever known a toddler knows they can be high-maintenance. Ten years ago I could put my other son in a corner with a couple favorite toys and buy myself 20 minutes. This child is much more demanding.
And I’ve had to rely more and more on the other members of our family to care for him because, even if I’m home, there’s a good chance I’m too tired to be useful for anything.
I have three posts mostly written that languish unfinished. I’ve kept up the Facebook page but I know most of you aren’t subscribed to that.
Check it out, I post lots of fun feminist content and sometimes we get brigaded!
Twice now some group of men has taken it upon themselves to drop by and take turns putting me in my place. Makes me feel like I must be doing something right.
I’m plotting and scheming as always, trying to better organize my life. Obviously, I can’t keep trying to run on five hours’ sleep (often less!) four or five days a week. My schedule has slid sideways from everyone else and sometimes it feels a little like living in a parallel universe.
I get up as the little guy goes down for a nap. I have to start dinner in the middle of the day so it can at least be ready to pass to the teenager by 4:00. Assuming she doesn’t have rehearsal today…. What day is it?
And I’m not home for bedtime most days. Few rituals strike a louder drum in the rhythm of life. Most weekends Hubs and I go at least 36 hours before we’re both home and conscious at the same time.
And I’m supposed to be building up my teaching chops and establishing relationships in the community. Funny thing, though, about being forced to stay up until at least 1am four nights a week – It’s very difficult to just step back into the morning schedule, even after a day off.
And two days off in a row to rest and transition? Don’t count on it!
Teachers are expected at 7:15. If I want to eat and have a cup of coffee before I get dressed, I need to be up by around 5:30.
Even if I switched off neatly on a shelf at midnight, that would be challenging.
Clearly, this is not working. I don’t hate the job but I’m starting to hate how it’s affecting my life.
I have a plan, but I need to do some research.
But I’m not going to let myself get stuck in this eddy. I have people to reach and discourse to incite.
I can do better than wearing myself out while I miss half my life, all for a wage that barely qualifies as supplemental.