Sunday, September 07, 2008

Don't Quit Your Day Job

Creating and Stolen Moments

I’m alone in the house right now. Just me and the dog. It’s about 100 degrees outside, so I’m content sitting in my air conditioned living room plunking away on my keyboard. My daughter is at a friend’s house working on a school project and my husband and son left for the 6th grade basketball tryouts. Everyone will be home soon and the rest of my evening will be all planned out.We’ll all go to 5 o’clock mass so that we can sleep in tomorrow. Then, we’ll pick up a take n’ bake pizza and follow it up with the big event…my son wants us all to play Monopoly! I’m excited that he chose this instead of the computer, but as we all know this will take up most of the night.

He put in this request on Thursday. I, of course, explained that Monopoly is not a weekday game and it needs to wait till Saturday. This morning it was the first thing he mentioned when he woke up. I let him pick between the San Francisco edition and the golf edition we received as a Christmas gift, cellophane still intact. He chose the golf edition.

Now since everyone’s gone I should be cleaning off the dining table. I have to file away the pile of bills, decide which junk mail can go in the recycle bin and what should be shredded. I should probably put a clean tablecloth on. I know I should be doing this, but his request brought up a concern. How will I write tonight?

It’s been a particularly tough week time wise. With Monday being a holiday, both my husband and I had the day off from work and both kids were home from school. My daughter and I decided to go see a movie…two movies actually. We earned it. She worked hard on homework all week and I managed to complete four separate writing pieces. We had a great time and laughed a lot.

Then, Tuesday night was “Back to School Night” at the high school and my Wednesday itinerary featured a dentist appointment and a Feldenkrais session, with my friend, to alleviate my neck pain. Thursday I had my second acupuncture appointment and, since it was late in the afternoon, dinner and homework were delayed. Friday night and early Saturday morning was devoted to finishing my library book and trying to relax.

I’m looking forward to spending time as a family tonight playing a simple board game. It’s the kind of Norman Rockwell family portrait I always dreamed of. I do feel a little guilty though that I feel my writing will suffer for it. Because I’m always so pressed for time, I never feel that I come remotely close to accomplishing my personal goals. It’s hard to realize how much not writing can inspire writing. All week I didn’t know what my post would be about and then it hit me. Not just the challenge of time, but the ways we are pushed and pulled in so many directions; how our need to create sometimes isolates and makes us feel guilty and selfish for needing time alone.

Look at me. I was handed a rare private moment at home and I’m not squandering it in front of the television or folding laundry (I really do need to fold that laundry though). I can enjoy my evening knowing this post is already in the can. I was also able to work through the block of ideas and come up with something after all. Last week my husband said, “This is the first time I’ve seen you writing more than you’re talking about writing.” So, even if it’s not as much as I think it should be, I am moving forward and really that’s all anyone can ask for. I better get that table cleaned off. By the way, we already selected the game pieces we’ll be tonight. I picked the golf shoe. Even on a metaphoric level, I still want to feel that I’m moving ahead!

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