I was called The Muffin Lady today (Mr Incredible said it was better than “the muffin top lady”) and I realised how quickly one can be defined by what one does. As a back story, I’ve started making mini-muffins for local moms to help ease lunch box stressors and make a bit of pocket money (read: will actually go towards Adventure Girl’s preschool costs). I advertised on Wednesday night and by Thursday had 10 orders! It was a small success and I’ve had muffins coming out of my ears since. For one delivery I couldn’t get hold of the lady whom I was dropping off muffins for, thankfully though she left her phone number and when I called and explained who I was she said “OH, the Muffin Lady!”. (Are you sick of reading the word “muffin” yet? I am! From now on they’ll be referred to be mm’s for mini-muffins). Perfectly understandable considering the context in which she’d met me, however, considering I’d been in the mm business for less than 24 hours it did come as a shock to my system.
This morning I’ve woken to being thankful of my past career as an Executive Assistant which motivated me to set up a spreadsheet of orders when they started coming in. Here are few things that I’ve been appreciating amidst the baking and child-caring multi-tasking:
- Affirmation. As an EA I got quite a lot of affirmation from my colleagues and employer for relatively little effort. I’ve found as a SAHM I get little affirmation for quite a lot of effort. The affirmation from people I’ve made mm’s for is lovely “They are delicious! And my son gives them a huge thumbs up – clients for life!!!”, an hour after delivering some “Thank you thank you!!!!! 24 gone already. Kids descended on me like a pack of hungry wolves!” and “Have just performed rigorous Quality Assurance testing before I give them to the kids… they are delicious!”. It fills a void I’ve been feeling for a while.
- I’m being recognised for something I always thought I was good at but now have others confirm that
- I’m meeting a need in my community
- I’m appreciating even more the value of a dollar. I’m charging $8 for 24 mm and with only one mm tray (soon to be rectified) the work/pay ratio is much, much less than I used to be earning. Throw in delivery and time it’s making me once again weigh up that $4 for a coffee or $30 for a weeknight dinner with a girlfriend. Not to say these aren’t appreciated – it’s just got me thinking about saving pennies to make pounds again.
- I’ve been a lot more productive with other aspects of my time. My kitchen is cleaner and subsequently my house is too.
- My hands on time with the kids has also been more creative – having an outlet for ME and feeling validated for it has pushed me to go out and jump in muddy puddles with them.
- I recognise I didn’t have the energy for this before. I look back with thankfulness my capacity is slowly growing.
Oh, and back to the point I started this post with. People should be valued for who they are more than what they do… but recognise what they do too. One can so easily be defined by what one does and that labelling can have a pigeon holing effect. Let’s not do that to people – we’re all so broad and complex creatures, lets look for the facets in the diamonds around us rather than just labelling the rock.