July 28, 2005

Take Your Daughter to Work Day

I suppose I should do this right. I know how to post, really. Just fell out of love with it and fell out of the habit. But the time has come. So onward...

Take your daughter to work day...silly holiday really. But it is currently my children's summer holiday break and for the first time in my life, I have an office of my own. We loaded up the car this morning, three kids still struggling with jet lag, two women struggling with the under-suggested diagnosis at Webmd of "crud complicated by galloping whatever" on the way to drop off Mommy at work. First stop: Starbucks. Morning ritual + 3 drinks. Next stop: Krispy Kreme for promised on Monday donuts(not a usual morning ritual). Then to drop Mommy off, about a block from work, RJ is informed she is going with Mommy. Pre-planned but unknown to the children. YAY!

At the drop-off point we exited the car and went up to my office. Unlocked the doors, sat the backpack down, coffee down, took the cokes to the fridge. Then back to the office. RJ commented on the nice office, then sat down with her book. I went to work...figuring out what went wrong with the website during my two days off.

Soon...my replacement, G, from the position I had prior to this one came in. She was in a flurry. Everyone wants G to find stuff and she doesn't know where and her supervisors keep saying "But TW knows", "Go ask TW", "TW was so smart, why can't you be like TW?" Sigh. RJ sat quietly and got an earful. I explained part of it to G; told her the other part wasn't my department at all and she would have to talk to the IT guy to get the program she needed on her computer. Mostly I explained and G took notes.

Then other co-workers paraded in asking for assistance. (not unusual). By lunch time RJ had read 2 books. She was so quiet reading that I was wishing that when I shared a cubicle it had been with her. We got up every hour or so to stretch. If we ran into someone in the hall she greeted them politely. Then back to work... We had lunch at the Union. RJ was amused at my tour of the food court, though she thanked me for it. She chose the steamed noodle bowl with beef and Chinese veggies. I chose the three side plate next door, where I purchased the medium sodas which came in a HUGE cup. This was so noteworthy she saved the cup to show her brother. Back to work, she went back to reading and playing with the Da Vinci flip cube. Then onto her summer "fun" Step into Fourth grade workbook. We, late in the day, went down the hall to visit the best candy in the department. She chatted amiably about her recent trip to Vancouver, the Four Seasons, Ziptrekking with the department head. Then chatted about our pets with the head secretary. All in all a nice day.

Of course that all is the set up. The important part is about me. No, of course it isn't but it is...taking my daughter to work taught me a lot. RJ pointed out things I don't notice. She pointed out that my co-workers think I am really smart and nice. She pointed out that people don't come into my office, send me emails desperate to know why they can't make something work, because they are too lazy to figure it out or to dumb...but because they know I can help them and will help them, even if it throws off my day. She didn't say that (because of course I do not growl when people come in or send email) but this is what she was getting at when she was rambling about how smart people thought I was and how nice I was to help them. She pointed out how many friends I have, (even though I normally will say I don't have work friends) etc. My social child noticed everything. "Did you notice how happy she was you showed her what to do?" No baby, I didn't. It is a job; a job I do because it is what I convinced enough people I knew how to do, even though many days I am not sure I really can do my job. It pays the bills, sort of. It isn't perfect but no job is...but no, I hadn't noticed. I don't tell her that though. I just smile and say, she is a nice woman, isn't she. I think, but you my middle child are both really smart, really nice and I hope you stay that way.


Shelly said...

do you ever notice its never take your son to work day? At least not in Indiana....I think the next time its take your daughter to work day I am going to take one of my boys. Glad you had a great day with RJ :)

Denise said...

Oh lord, Shelly. Do not get me started on this. Shit, too late. It is officially Take Your Daughter or Son to Work Day now (it's the third week in April actually) and it freaking pisses me off.

Boys do not need to be taken to work in order to learn that they can truly be anything that they want to be - girls do. Girls still need STRONG female ROLE models, boys see them every minute of their lives, GIRLS STILL DO NOT.

Take your sons to work with you if you like, but do not say (in front of me) that it's necessary or important to do so for their self esteem or their well-being.


Shelly said...

Not necessary for their well being but it leaves us mom's out who only have sons :). And I didn't know it had been changed, to Daughter or Son all I ever hear is take your daughter to work week ;-P