A Mom’s Job Description

Daily Job Responsibilities:

  • Posses excellent communication skills and be able to address delicate and random subjects, such as
    • Why a playmate has two mommies or daddies
    • What death is and why it’s part of life
    • Why love is the only thing but it’s not always perfect
    • Have exceedingly strong organizational skills and be a magical problem solver
      • Will be required to locate missing socks and homework minutes before it’s time to leave for school,
      • Be informed at 10:30 at night about two dozen cupcakes you were volunteered to bring in the following morning,
      • Be willing to work variable hours
        • Including the middle of the day when you’re in the middle of the most important meeting of your professional life
        • Evenings and weekends
        • During dinner parties
        • Be on stand by to run to the hospital if child falls off the top bunk when he/she tries to bungee jump to the lower bunk or gets sick the second your chocolate soufflé comes out of the oven
        • Be OK with frequent 24 hour shifts
          • Respond quickly to piercing screams at 2:00 AM resulting from consumption of too many chocolate covered gummy bears
          • Capable of industrial strength clean up when the gummed-gummies break free of the interior chamber and are deposited on the off-white Berber carpet in your bedroom as the child whispers the words I don’t feel very good into your ear
          • Travel and shuttle services to the ends of the earth and back, 24×7
            • Trips to crude locations requiring natural survival skills (NOTE: If camping is not your thing, I suggest booking a hotel and explaining room service and eating dinner on the balcony is almost the same thing as pitching a tent and cooking chili on a propane burner)
            • Travel to expensive sporting venues and tournaments, willing to coordinate with other mothers, be eager to assume the role of leader or contributor,
            • Snack provisioning without advanced notice – this is not limited to shuttle service
            • Late night hospital visits
            • Pick ups at 12:30 AM from failed sleep overs

Minimum Job Requirements:

  • Accepting it’s a lifetime commitment
  • There is no get out of jail free card (once you don the Mom persona you are labeled forever more, even if you wear a size nothing, host Botox parties, have plastic surgery, change your name or try to enter the Witness Protection Program)
  • Loss of sleep – this begins at conception followed by several months after childbirth, and will resurface again during the toddler years. There is an extended period of calm following the fifth birthday, but loss of sleep resumes in the tween years following the discussion about safe sex, birth control, and is a constant companion during the high school dating years.
  • A wiliness to sacrifice time, personal space, and alone time in the early mornings
  • Accepting you will fall instantly and remain unconditionally hooked until your last breath.
  • Ability to worry incessantly from the instant you lay eyes on the bundle of joy and continue worrying long after the child becomes an adult
  • Acceptance you will fail and have bad mom moments at least daily
  • Be able to jump out of a hot bath and run flat out at neck breaking speeds if the screaming from the living room is blood curdling.
  • Face stimulating technical challenges such as fractions, changing the back tire of a bicycle, creating a Face Book account, or programing TIVO
  • Having air traffic controller skills is a must as you will be required to maintain calendars, coordinate multiple homework projects, and shuttle runs
  • Must assume accountability for the quality of the final output
  • You must have a surplus of medical supplies, chocolate chip cookies, and good insurance.
  • Know how to create anything from nothing – ala MacGyver
  • Be ready to answer any question with total and complete honesty

Perks (there are none, but if you are still reading you’re mad as a hatter and deserve to know the rest)


  • There is no advancement – NONE AT ALL. Be prepared for outrage if you suddenly rediscover your buried but not forgotten identity and decide to, 1) follow your dreams 2) join a gym 3) take a writing class, 4) by a ’67 red convertible Ford Mustang, 5) occasionally decline participating in endless weekend shuttle driving and designating the father figure the soccer mom role.

Previous Experience

  • None is required because the first minute of the child’s life you are instantly certified qualified and functionally insane because from that minute forward you will go beyond human capability, give, find love when there is none, give and give, and give again


  • Unless you have a job outside the home there is no compensation


Other than sparse to non-existent opportunities for personal growth there are smiles without reason, hugs and hand holding, requests for lunch dates, trips to the movies, and the occasional I love you, Mommy, for no reason at all and usually when least expected. DANGER WILL ROBINSON, heartache and leaky eyes can be expected

Preferred Traits:       

  • Excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to work well with and on small teams
  • Always hope for the best but be willing to accept the worst
  • Ability to take charge and resolve hostile situations at any instant
  • Willingness to take risks and try new ideas
  • Mature confidence in making decisions – including the mundane
  • Passionate about influencing the outcome with no expectation of acknowledgement and hoping if not praying your sacrifice yields a positive impact in the their life and the rest of the world
  • Having a whimsical attitude is a huge plus, as well as the ability to laugh when tears are more appropriate.
  • Be exceptionally forgiving
  • Posses the ability to love on demand
  • Be able to say no when you want to say yes, to say yes when you want to lock them in the bedroom and throw away the key until you are ashes in the wind or the world ends.
  • To give love without exception or expectation it will be returned


Thank yous and tips are not included.


Have you considered getting a cat?


Please feel free to add or amend.


I’m a writer and hoarder of one-size-fits-all panty hose. Until the hose fits over my bum, I write to provide an alternative view on writing and perfection.

35 thoughts on “A Mom’s Job Description

  1. No perks? Oh, Brenda, you don’t believe that. Being a mom is tough–the hardest job there is. But it’s also the most rewarding. I love my daughter more than I ever thought I could love anyone or anything. Even when I’m stressed, tired, and feeling like I just want to crawl up in a ball, her face warms me. I wouldn’t trade this job for anything. :)
    Kelly Hashway recently posted….Monday Mishmash 4/30/12My Profile

  2. I had great communication skills until I had children. Or at least that was with adults. About things other than constipation and sneaking greens into a meal. As for dinner parties… Haven’t been to one on years:((
    Sandra Tyler recently posted….Washing Gramma’s CarMy Profile

    • You made me smile, Sandra. When my son was born we had a two year draught of outside activity – he wasn’t one to sit still, but on the morning of his 3rd bday a different kid emerged and it’s been smooth sailing ever since. I have given up dinner parties, unless forced to attend or host one, but that is only a by product of writing.

    • Jodi, gets worse if your child goes to school in another state. Then there is the one time shuttle. There are many miles of to and fro’ing as a mom.

    • Claudine, get a cat, less work than a puppy. I do love my kids and have not regrets at all, but it’s not an easy job and one I was completely unprepared for – but as I said, a new mom learns instantly. Glad to make you smile.

  3. Perfect :)
    I would add that the above performance standards must be maintained at all times … even when your kids have called you every name in the book :(
    Astra recently posted….Ceasefire!!My Profile

  4. My kids are now 41 and 44. It’s easier. Looking back, I am glad I had my kids really young and before I had any idea how hard it would be. Still, it’s the most fun I ever had.
    Linda Medrano recently posted….BirdsongsMy Profile

    • Linda – you are far too young and sexy to have children that age, are you toying with me? It is a thankless job but damn if the perks (and yes there are a few) aren’t the best.

  5. Love this blog, AND love your cover photo! And concerning advancement? There really is advancement with this job. I now have a grandchild, and he’s my object of job advancement!

    • Hi Ramey, thanks for stopping by. Congrats one the grandchild, my mom loves hers too. She gets to enjoy them and not have the heartache.. She tells me it’s the best part. Thanks kindly for your thoughtful words, much appreciated.

  6. Good Lord, how you made me laugh here, Brenda! You’ve said it all and then some with charming wit.
    Being a mom IS without question the hardest job out there. Looking back, though, I cherished each moment with my kids and am now enjoying being a “Gammie” to my granddaughter. Lot less stressful. 😛
    Martha Orlando recently posted…."Here in My Cathedral . . ."My Profile

    • Martha – Good, bringing a smile to your face was the goal. I started to writing something lovely dove for Mother’s Day and went amuck. Once I got start, I couldn’t turn back. Glad you’re enjoying the new role of ‘Gammie’ I am still in the mom role.

  7. More reasons I will put off motherhood as long as possible. Though, not enough discussion of cleaning up someone else’s poo. Hilarious post, Brenda.

    • Hey, Kiersi nice to see you here. Cats are wonderful house companions, easily trainable, not talking back (but they do talk, be warned) they are a bit of a bed hog, but not as bad as toddlers.

  8. Wild Child Mama

    I believe I will be borrowing this when I go back to work. I was wondering how to put into a resume all the amazing things I find myself dealing with!
    I am especially trained at waking up at 2:00am and 4:30 am almost every night as well as giving up any and all personal time in the morning. Who knew I would miss that so much?
    Wow. The skils we earn!!
    Wild Child Mama recently posted….Worry. Worry. Worry.My Profile

    • Kjersti – I think you should, being a mom is the best foundation for just about any job (except brain surgery and perhaps dentistry) we really do acquire quite the skill set as moms. I did go through a two year period where it was me and the stars. I had permanent dark circles under my eyes. Glad those days are over.

  9. Wow. Well said, Brenda. If I had known then that I was applying for this kind of job, well, maybe I would have reconsidered. Then again, maybe not. I love my grown kids, and, best of all–they’re grown. No more being tortured at all hours! Yippee!
    Monica recently posted….A Word About WordsMy Profile

  10. Oh Brenda, you summed it all up. Being a single mum I can identify with all of them. Brilliant! I wonder what would the husbands write about????
    rimly recently posted….DUSKMy Profile

  11. k~

    Oh my heck, you had me laughing before I got half way through the first portion of this, and I just kept laughing until I finished it. THANK YOU for that!

    This one almost got me so bad my iced tea landed on the floor:
    “There is no get out of jail free card (once you don the Mom persona you are labeled forever more, even if you wear a size nothing, host Botox parties, have plastic surgery, change your name or try to enter the Witness Protection Program)”

    What a wonderful post… in so many ways!
    k~ recently posted….Waiting on Lillie (100 Word Song)My Profile

    • K – then my job is done and I’ve succeeded. Only a woman that has logged hours in the role can relate. To the not yet mom I’ve probably horrified them and they’ll probably get a cat. Sorry about the tea, but not that you smile. Thanks much.

    • Hi Roy – I confess that wasn’t my thought at the time of writing, but in hindsight, I agree. Speaking from personal experience, I hadn’t a clue what I was getting myself into when I signed up for the job. The horror of it came later, but there are intangible perks. In my case, it’s been a pleasurable job (except to the middle of the night clean up).

  12. The only things I might add are:

    Waking every night to deal with pets, which you were assured you would not be responsible for taking care of. (see my linked post)

    Holding your ground and insisting on your early teen’s best effort, when he/she starts crying and says that they are incapable of learning to type or do algebra and that getting a decent grade in that class is impossible

    Giving only love and compassion when your child keeps you in the emergency room till 1:30am after having gotten injured doing something you explicitly told them NOT to do
    Mike Adams recently posted….Popularity of Bullying Remains HighMy Profile

    • Mike – Excellent additions. I remember telling my daughter…stay off the skateboard and like you spent hours in ER getting arm casted because of skateboard accident. No regrets, though. It does take amazing patience (I am often low on that) walking and counting helps. :-)

    • Hey, Jess. I hope your mom enjoys it and so glad you could see the job she has to do. Thanks, and glad you stopped by.

  13. Wow, you covered it all well Brenda, I really don’t think there was anything you left out. The never ending ebb and flow of being a parent is so much greater than I ever imagined, so much greater than I dreamed possible. Thank you for placing this in such concrete and delightfully realistic terms here, and when it comes to parenting, I really think it takes one to know one. One of my children is touring India with her boyfriend as you know right now. They where involved in some kind of 36 hour celebration which included a parade of 300 elephants and fireworks from 3:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. Small wonder I pray!
    Elizabeth Young recently posted….Old school groundsMy Profile

    • Thanks, Elizabeth..I hope we get to see some pictures of the celebration. It sounds wonderful. I am still awed they met with Corinne, that is the coolest ever.

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