Sunday, August 22, 2010


Two years ago I found myself sitting in a lawyer's office drawing up papers for my divorce.

When he asked what I do for a living and I told him I was a janitor; he said:

"You don't want to be a janitor you whole life do you?"

I felt like someone had socked me in the gut.

I never completed high school, and I don't have any plans to go to college and I'm definitely not interested in looking for a new job. I like my schedule. I can have my mornings to myself, my days for my boys and work at night - when I am at my prime (I'm a night owl).

But yet, for almost two years now, I've felt like a failure because I'm not reaching for more.

It's kept me from making new friends and going new places.

I'm embarrassed to tell people what I do and I feel like I need to explain my life choices to everyone.


For the past couple of weeks I've been working a "normal" job. Climbing the ladder of success. And can I just say? It's not that great.

You see, I'm up at 6:30 in the morning and I've got a 45-minute drive. I work an 8 hour day (and there's no sitting) and then I have to drive another 30 minutes to get to my normal job. By the time I get home, it's already 8pm and I'm tired and hungry. But there are my boys, excited to see me. And the laundry and dinner and watering the tomato plant and feeding the dog. All in a two hour span, because then I need to be in bed. I get frustrated with the boys because they make messes I have no energy or time to clean and they are very loud. Jumping and climbing on me. Asking for things. It's too much. My fuse is shorter and I snap quicker.

I absolutely hate it.

I hate the person I become after a long days work. I'm no fun.

I hate the time I don't spend with my boys. Two hours is not enough!

And I finally realized something. America, it's always reaching for more. More money, more things, more power. And I don't need that. I don't want that.

I want to lay on the couch all morning snuggled up to my boys.

I want to listen to their toddler conversations and feel their cars running up my legs as I'm washing dishes.

I want to teach them to read and see every second of them growing and learning and becoming.

And if that means I have to clean up after other people for the rest of my life....I'll take it.

Because my children are worth so much more to me than a better car or money in the bank or a few letters after my name.

And that? That is success that can never be measured by the human eye.

And next time someone asks me what I do, I will proudly answer: "I'm a MOM by day and a Janitor by night and I love it!"


OctoberRain said...

YES! :)

Katherine said...

If you can do what you love - do it. You are ahead of the game - some people spend a whole life and never even know what they love to do. Good for you!

Thomas L. Winters said...

From what I've learned is that with whatever we do in this life, as long as we're happy and satisfied with it, thats all that matters.

Sometimes I get discouraged and looking at my life too. Here I am, I graduated high school, but no college, really no desire to go. I've been working for Meijer now for almost ten years. I look at my life and I too question things..."Do I wanna work here forever?" Then I hafta put things into perspective. I do have a good job, making fairly good money, and I've got job security...and for the most part I'm happy with what I do, and frankly thats all that matters.

Odie Langley said...

Alexia you go girl. The older I get the less things I want or desire. I also want quiet time at the end of the day that translates to quality time. You are certainly happy with your schedule and have nothing to be sorry about or apologize for. Keep being Alexia and loving your boys. That is all that really matters. I am proud of the person you are.

Anonymous said...

Good for you!! Some people never "get" what's important in this life. Enjoy your children while you have them. They will not always be children. You can climb the ladder of "success" when they are grown (if you want to). This time with them is a passing gift. Don't miss it!!

grams said...

That's great Allie! keep up the good work ;)

jenn said...

Great post. I think if you are able to support your family and the schedule works for you and you enjoy it, do it. And heck, janitors work hard! I clean my church for a tiny paycheck, and it's not easy. People are messy and rarely appreciate the person that comes in a cleans up the mess later.