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“Today I’m certainly getting sacked. Fired. Pink-slipped, cardboard boxes et al.”, mused The CoHo, as she stared into the mirror, secretly admiring the darkening circles around her decaf eyes. After all, how long could she put on this charade? She felt like a fool in her uniform of black slacks, oversized shirt and colorful sneakers, psyching herself silly, “You better kick some corporate butt CoHo. Don’t give up the cause!”

Damn the cause. Whose cause was it anyway? She never agreed to exchange family time for a paycheck (ok, so she never expected family time to mean this much to her either). She didn’t want these spoils of half-won battles. She wanted everything…or nothing at all. Why screw over the previous generations only? Might as well destroy the environment with non-disposable diapers while she’s at it. “YeaaaH”, she screeched, “Talkin’ ’bout my ge-eeeeeeh-neration…”

The CoHo’s head-banging session was soon interrupted by hungry wails and she assumed a superwomanmom pose of breastfeeding babe in one hand and work laptop on the other. In between frustrated shrieks from a squirming baby struggling to get a decent mouthful, she attacked the e-mails multiplying in her box like a nasty virus.

A satisfied burp and series of yawns later, the babe was tightly swaddled and (seemingly) sound asleep. The CoHo then knew she had no excuse to avoid real work, which until the next week or so happened to be making the trading system faster. How progressive of Dream Company to dole out a mission-critical, high visibility, huge impact project to the new work-at-home mom!

The CoHo perused through enddless lines of dodgy code under her control, and felt a sudden sense of power…followed by nerve-wracking fear. A fear that was unlike the usual rush of a new, impossible deadline. More like the fear a drugged out CoHo felt when she found herself alone in a hospital room with a 5 hour old baby for an entire night.

She rushed into the bedroom, convinced that the babe had stirred – nope. He was in that blissful REM stage, flashing a quick grin every few seconds. Dammit. Ah! Laundry. Why not get that out of the way now instead of ruining the weekend? Oh, she’d already had this brainwave yesterday. Fine, then prep for dinner. Now that she’s at home, The CoHo had no excuse depriving her family of a heart-friendly, home-cooked meal. Uh, the refridgerator was still totally cramped with the major cooking spree she’d launched 2 days ago. Perhaps a nice cup of tea would help refresh her a bit.

One chai, one coffee and three dark chocolates later, The CoHo took another stab at the monstrous code. 010110110101010101010 *coredump*

The CoHo sunk into a schizophrenic blur as the voices taunted, “See what they said about a Mommy Brain?”, “You need to switch to a line of work that will fit your new lifestyle better – like testing”,  “This is why part-time workers shouldn’t get key deliverables”, “Girls can’t code anyway, and we’ll find another token female to keep the HR diversity committee happy”.

WaaaaAAH! *pop* The shrill cry was like music to The CoHo’s ears. She rushed to the bedroom, squeezed the tiny babe tight and showered him with generous, slobbery kisses. “Mommy’s here, she’s not going anywhere. Mommy’ll take care of you”.

And the e-mails did flood, the code did break, the phones did keep ringing as The CoHo and her babe spent a lovely spring afternoon finding new pieces of furniture to chew on.

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