One night last week, as I was putting John to bed, he asked about my new job. I told him there were some big changes, and went over some of them. "The biggest change, of course," I said, "is that I don't work at night anymore, so I can tuck you in at night instead. And one of the hardest changes is that I'm not in the Guild anymore."
And John lost it. His eyes grew huge and flooded with shocked tears. He cried like -- I don't even know, like I'd told him Maia was going to go live somewhere else and wouldn't be back for awhile. That out-of-the-blue. He sobbed while I watched him, taken aback by this display.
When he got ahold of himself, he asked, "Why did you take a day job if it meant leaving the Guild?"
"Well, mostly because I wanted the job. But because I work during the day now, I can see you more."
He shook his head at me while I spoke: no, no, no. And I, who had thought a lot about the decision, felt pretty crappy.
Last night, Matt was out of town. I let the kids sleep in the same room and listened to them giggle and squeal and read out loud to each other while I wasted time on the computer. Then Maia called me in.
"Mama?" she asked. "Why ahn't you union anymo?"
I looked at John. "I told her," he said reproachfully, and a little defiantly.
Jeez! I sat down and talked awhile, and they both cried and cried. This is the world you live in when you have people say things like, "Hey, have you seen my union underwear?" and "Oh, look at those awesome towels! Never mind, they're imported" and so on every day at your house.