Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Mothering Soul

I am not a Mother, technically. I have not given birth or raised an adopted child. I have not chosen to not have kids, I have just not felt I am capable to financially support a child. Considering I am still learning how to financially support my own lifestyle, I always wonder how other people do it with a significantly smaller income. Regardless of the chances I have had to accidentally become a parent but luckily did not succeed, I have been told that I have a mothering soul.

I have been working in the hospitality industry for over twenty years, and have trained hundreds of new employees. Training and raising are not the same but when all of my trainees look up to me like a mother, I begin to wonder if I am getting my fill of motherhood everyday at work. My 'kids' come to me with ailments, financial advice, relationship issues, personal problems and numerous other issues only a parent would experience. The days at work are little tidbits of parenthood that I learn with every interaction I have with my staff. Each personality needs different attention, some need a loving hand while others are independent enough to just give a little pat once and a while.

I have been called 'Mom' by many staff members. Sometimes it bothers me to no end. I understand that I am their boss, and being an older woman with all those snippets of advice from past experience, is a wealth of information for young people learning about how to get through the tough years in their twenties. Why they come to me and tell me things I do not need to know, as an employer is another question. I never really return the information or problems of my life, making me seem like a professional councilor rather than an employer. I hope my advise is worth something as I look at my experiences and wish I took different pathways at certain times of my life.

I had to discipline an employee that is quite capable of understanding his plight. He has been spoken to many times, but my mothering soul looks at him in a light different from other employees. He is always the positivity any kitchen needs, always happy and cheery, ready to smile in the face of chaos rather than the opposite. He is my alter ego, and I love the positive attitude he brings to the kitchen.

I decided to give him a new outlook on his behavior. I had him write himself up. I let him bring home his project, to allow him to think about his answers. He was to return to work on time with his envelope in hand, a better employee. I wasn't sure how he would accept this request, but I know he is an intelligent person and will thrive to impress.

On his return, he was early, and chipper, always willing to please. After a few hours of work I asked him for his 'homework'. He was eager to give it to me and answered all the questions to my approval, including his choice of discipline.

Another example of a different personality, responding positively to a specific route of teaching. I, in this experience, learn to exercise my Motherly Soul. Whether I am a natural mother or an easy soul, always getting along with all types of characters, I am looked upon as a friendly person. Has it advanced me in my life here on Earth? I believe it has. Do good people finish last? It depends on how one looks at the question? I have already fulfilled the Mother in my life, seeing some of my 'kids' succeed and some fail. In the end, I am happy and satisfied, learning about life one day at a time.

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