Linda Boyne: Stay-at-home-mom in Vail Valley goes back to work
Vail, CO, Colorado
I’ve been somewhat “retired” from the professional world for about 10 years. Oh, sure, I have this column, but it’s not like a 9-to-5, daily grind kind of thing. It’s more like my mind wandering and finding its way into print for latte money.
So recently, I decided to make the leap from stay-at-home mom to working mom. My brain needed more to do than figuring out how to get gum out of carpet and making grocery lists.
I talked to a friend who is a corporate recruiter to get some real-world advice on what to do and how to get started finding my new career. Her first question: “Do you have a resume?”
Well, yeah, somewhere in a box in the basement, probably packed up with my ’90s power suits and all the shoulder pads I had to pull out of clothes because they made me look more like a linebacker than a young professional woman. So, down to the basement I went to dig up the relic resume that represented what I used to be.
The first time I read through it, I felt like I was learning about someone else’s life. It all seemed so foreign to me and yet vaguely familiar. It was like a movie I saw a long time ago about which I only remembered the broad strokes. Man, did I really do all that stuff? I sound impressive!
Updating the resume was an interesting task. It had been so long since I’d needed it, that I didn’t even have it on my computer or saved on a disk. So I unrolled the papyrus and started recreating the wheel. The last job I had wasn’t even on there. I sat wracking my brain, trying to remember what I even did in that position oh-so long ago. Slowly, a few details returned and another friend, who is a wordsmith of sorts, helped me creatively reconstruct my history.
The next hurdle kind of caught me off guard. Full of excitement and optimism, I met a girlfriend for coffee to tell her I actually had a couple interviews set up. She shared my excitement for a moment, then got a quizzical look on her face and asked the questions only a dear friend can ask: “What are you going to wear? Do you own anything besides jeans?”
A valid question, really. We live in a very jean-friendly environment, and my lifestyle to this point was very jean-conducive. I enjoy denim. And let’s be honest, with the right shoes and a cute top, you can get away with jeans anywhere in this valley, even the nicest restaurants. But not in a job interview.
So the Great Closet Dilemma began. Surely there was something in there that wasn’t made of denim! Once was the day when the interview outfit was easy; you just wore a suit. Those days are gone and thankfully they took all my panty hose with them. But it left me in a bit of a lurch. What’s a girl to do when her wardrobe consists of either jeans and hoodies for daytime or eveningwear (you know, those tops that dress up the jeans)? Nothing in between.
“We’re going to have to go shopping,” decided the quizzical friend. Darn. Forced to shop. Oh, the inhumanity of it all! Such sacrifices I have to make for the right interview ensemble.
A wise woman once said you should always have in your closet, ready to wear at a moment’s notice, something for a formal occasion, something for a wedding, something for a funeral and an interview outfit. Clearly this wise woman is not me, because I fail on three out of the four. I do have that perfect Little Black Dress ready and waiting for the right special occasion. But, once again, my wardrobe falls short for an interview is not the time or place for the LBD.
Since I’m sure you’re just dying to know, I did finally came up with pants that weren’t jeans and an acceptable top without a hood. And I got a fabulous job. Who knew?!
Linda Boyne, of Edwards, writes weekly for the Vail Daily. She can be contacted through email@example.com