"What do you do?" I hear this question so frequently. It's one of the first things that people ask when you meet them. I hear it from people I meet all the time, I see people asking this on social media sites, I see people asking my friend on his Instagram LIVE show almost everyday. It sounds like such a general question, but of course most people are using it to ask about employment. For those of us who don't have a typical 9 to 5 job or a "real" job though, that question causes some stress, some pressure to come up with a point blank or impressive answer, and believe it or not, even some anxiety.
When did we become solely defined by our jobs? So, if we do not have a regular job, does that mean that we don't do anything? It's kind of crazy to me that a job would tell someone we just met, who we are as a person. A job is a method to make money, to pay for cost of living, not necessarily defining at all what you do or who you are as a person . There are so many people that are doing different side jobs, some that are artists, and some that are using different methods to make money and it doesn't mean that they can't have a "normal" job or are not skilled or educated to have a one. Sometimes it is because they choose to not live in the definable norm, they choose to make money one way and to define who they are through living and being, and not through how or where they are employed.
My job technically is that I am a mom to five awesome girls. However, when people ask me, "what do you do?", I seriously freeze up every time, as if being a mom is not good enough. I am a mom, but I like to think that I am so much more. I am a person who has many interests, skills, and hobbies ....I also, just so happen to be a mom.
Last year, I was going through a rough period of time, like an identity crisis in a way because of this very topic. I love my children dearly, I do. They are my everything, without a doubt, but I was feeling that people only thought of me as "that mom with five girls" everywhere I went. I was starting to realize that I barely had any daily interaction with people who knew anything else about me as person aside from the fact that I was a MOM. Because of this, I made a pact with myself. I decided that I was going to start doing some things for me, taking one day a week or two, to go out for walks and hikes like I used to love doing. I started taking photos with my phone while on these walks. I enjoyed it so much that I started sharing them on Facebook, and then on Instagram. I partially did this to show people that I was capable of other things besides for just mom things. I wanted people to see a bit of "Jen" and not just Jen, mom of five. Instagram was the perfect platform for me to do this, as I didn't have many followers on there that I personally knew, and so everyone that I met and started talking to knew me only as @pretty.city (Jen) not just Jen the mom. It was honestly so refreshing to have people look at me as something more again, as not solely defined by "What I Do".