I have been pondering recently whether professionally, this is it. Am I going to stay in education all my life or is there another career for me out there? In all likelihood this IS it but I do like to keep my options open. I have no clue what I would do instead and, to be honest, the only professional training I have outside of teaching is acting. Not a sensible career change. Or practical.
I had a quick look at my CV and realised how dated it is, but not knowing anything about what a CV is supposed to look like these days I dipped my toes into the world of Google. This only set to confuse me further. I thought about what a CV actually was….it means ‘courses of life’ in Latin and apparently the first CV was written by Leonardo da Vinci. Yeah…follow that! I won’t bore you with details but apparently personal statements are the way forward. You knew that, right? Me, not so much. The last time I wrote a personal statement was on my UCCA form (yep, I AM that old) and I was trying to impress the university boards with the marvellous, diverse life I had led in my 18 sheltered, middle-class years of growing up. I can see why there are so many GAP years now…take a year off to actually DO something.
I pondered whether my personal statement should include my ability to get three children dressed, breakfasted and out of the door each morning by 0715 with clean teeth, vitamin pastille in hand and all of their homework in the correct bags. Should it include how adept I am at planning, acquiring and cooking all the food for the week in order to nourish my family in a healthy yet exciting manner? The skills I have in being able to listen to three children, all talking at once and similarly answer them all at the same time? All of that shows my prowess in practical matters, planning and execution and people skills.
I bet if that really was on my CV It would be scoffed at but it’s a shame really. Why shouldn’t domestic life be a valid way to demonstrate ones abilities? Why is it better to show your ability to see a project through with, for example, a successful advertising campaign rather than the fact you planned, catered for, bought supplies and successfully pulled off a party for 25 three-year-olds? Just saying…
Anyway, reality bites and, for now, I will stick with what I know and what I’m good at. But one day, when it is time for change, I might just write that CV as it should be written.
A CV will detail your ‘courses of life’
I’m a cook and a cleaner, a mum and a wife.
I sort out the bills and I empty the bin,
I organise Christmas and re-stock the gin.
I dose out the Calpol and no-one is faster
At ripping that 2-day old Peppa Pig plaster.
I help with the homework, I teach them to pee
And monitor what they can watch on TV.
When they are crying I wipe away tears,
I champion dreams and I stamp on their fears.
Their washing gets sorted, their meals cooked three ways,
With grace I put up with the ‘toddler phase’.
I pay for the school trips and organise parties,
Read them a story and bribe them with Smarties.
All of these things are a course of my life,
A cook and a cleaner, a mum and a wife.
And that’s MY personal statement.
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