Monday, January 17, 2011

second shift

It's been written about many times by people way smarter than me, and technically it doesn't apply to me because I'm not a mom.

But I would still argue that my work does not end when I clock out of the office. I go from my 'first shift-job' to my 'second shift,' which may not include feeding and bathing children but does include fixing fences, deworming horses, unloading feed, feeding horses and dogs and cleaning the dogs' pen.

Like today.

I bought the wood to fix the fence last week but rain kept us from doing it. I was going to spare my body the strain of doing it myself, but I failed. I got impatient tonight and decided to just do it.

So I did.

When the boards didn't line up exactly, I wasn't about to measure and get the skill saw. I just nailed them on top of each other. A man might not have done it that way but I'm not a man now, am I? My patience was already exasperated when I couldn't find the drill bit for the drill to unscrew the rotting boards - a tape measure would've sent me over the patience ledge.

Deworming the horses sounds easy - a tube of paste squirted in their mouths - and it was for the two who stood there and swallowed it obediently. The other three I had to track across the arena for 45 minutes before they finally gave in one at a time and let me catch them. By the time I got around to Horse #2, it was pitch black outside and the only way I could tell it was the one I wanted was by its haughty prancing and running around. It was game of hide-and-seek but I eventually won.
My second shift doesn't look like that every day. Some days it's much simpler (as in non-existent); other days it involves cooking dinner, cleaning up the house, working from our home office.
I just finished a glass of wine and I toasted to all of us - all women who work two, three, four shifts.

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