Hey there, guy from the BBC viral video from last week. I know, you must feel completely mortified as the entire world found out that you were more than just an expert on South Korea. GASP! You're a father, too!
I have to admit, I laughed. I showed my husband and he laughed. In fact, every single person I know posted it on Facebook today and we ALL laughed. So thank you. Our bleak mid-March Friday started off 100% times better because of you and your kids who derailed your big moment in a way only kids can, with their "don't give a f*ck" attitude.
But guess what BBC dad? You're not alone! Parents who work from home all laughed that much harder at what happened this morning because it's happened to us too. And it sucks when it happens to you.
Working from home, or doing a job that requires a lot of your work to happen in your home, is rough when you have kids. Those childless work at home people are hanging around wearing dress shirts and pajama pants for their conference calls, and enjoying coffees from their fancy espresso machines and generally just living the good life. But, for those of us who work from home with kids, our lives are slightly more complicated.
My husband and I are both self-employed. I work as a doula, which means most of my practical work happens outside the home as I meet with my clients in their homes, or attend births at nearby hospitals. But, when a potential clients call my home to inquire about my services, nine times out of 10, I've got two rugrats running around, playing Star Wars battles or fighting over Lego pieces. It doesn't make for a very professional background sound. So, most of the time I let my phone go to voice mail and then a few minutes later I yell out to my husband and boys that "I'm making a VERY IMPORTANT phone call. PLEASE DON'T DISTURB ME!"
Nine times out of 10, someone barges into my office mid-phone call. They're usually crying and they usually need me immediately. So, basically I'm damned if I do, damned if I don't. I get you BBC dad. That casual shove of your child -- I've been there. I've shushed, and made crazy hand signals to please SHUT THE F**K UP, or tried to out-run the annoyance and lock myself into another room. It almost never works.
My husband suffers from the same plight as a musician. He's constantly booking gigs over the phone and god forbid anyone hears children in the background and it ruin his rock star credibility. He usually locks himself on our back balcony no matter the weather so he can manage his business without being bothered. Never mind that one time he got locked outside by our three -year-old while he was boiling water on the stove. It's all part and parcel to working from home with kids.
I've gotta say, dude from the BBC, THIS was your big moment. Not the fact that you got to do a fancy BBC interview. (and I'm not sure if you've done this before, but I hope next time you work out a better system for keeping the kids out...a lock on the door before live streaming on the largest UK network, perhaps?) This was your big moment because you got to show the world what it really looks like to work from home. And maybe you didn't react in the way everyone wanted you to, but I think you did what most parents try to do when our kids try to screw with our professional lives. Keep acting like everything is normal and hope to hell nobody notices that you're trying to juggle a million things all at the same time.
Because it's impossible. And that's real life parenting. And trust me when I say that when you closed your eyes and wanted to disappear, we all knew exactly how you felt.
Oh and BBC viral video dad (known before today as Robert Kelly), the only way I was even able to write this is because I gave my kids a million Mini Eggs and stuck them in front of the TV. They only bothered me 18 different times.
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