Broke as a joke.

Tom and I have been married for almost 7 years. In that time I have spent 268 weeks either pregnant or nursing (or sometimes both.). 268 WEEKS!

Let me break that down for ya. That is about 5.15 years. To be more specific, it means 1,876 days of total body invasion. That is over 45,000 hours.

So, here's how I figure it... At $7.25 an hour, I would have made $326,424 by now. That averages out to a yearly salary of $63,383. But, do you know how much I actually made for all this work? Zero dollars.

Now, I would be willing to settle for $3.25 an hour. Or a dollar an hour. Heck, I'll even take a dollar a kid. Because at this point motherhood has not been terribly lucrative.

Once, (during a low point personally) I added up all the time I would spend in my lifetime trimming fingernails and toenails. I have to take care of my twenty, plus each kids has twenty.... So that is 100 nails I am in charge of. I figured out that I would spend like four full months in my lifetime just trimming nails, that is 4 months of 24 hour per day trimapalooza.

Between the nails, and the diapers and the laundry, the occasional bite while breast feeding, the literal kicks to the inside of your rib cage, the spit-up that you don't even know is running down the back of your shirt... You would think SOMEONE would be giving me the $7.25/hr.

I love being a mom, and I wouldn't trade it for anything. (Sure, I have my moments where I fantasize about driving my anything-but-a-van to work, I walk in with a starbucks and an expensive pantsuit. Oooh, and highlights. It's my fantasy, and here I have great shoes and highlights. And a mother salary.). But, other than the occasional pantsuit dreams, I love love love what I do.

I just wish I got one measly penny per fingernail.

But for now, I guess I will take the payment I get. Because, it's not all spit-up and nail clippings. It's also a lot of hugs, smiles, sloppy kisses, squealy giggles, memories, and first moments... and more joy than any pantsuit could ever bring. Maybe someday I will get to be a grown-up, with a car that accommodates a reasonable-but-not-excessive number of passengers, and I'll have a job that pays me *something* for the work I do. Maybe I'll be required to wear pantsuits, and I'll have great shoes and highlights after all. But, I'll probably miss this season of my life. And I'll wish I had savored this time more. I might even miss the van. (However, I seriously doubt it.) But, I guess that a van isn't the worst thing... If it's full of everything you love.