I uncovered this post in my drafts section. I clearly started it last February sometime, but never finished it. It still applies, so I decided to post it now. Though, no, we haven’t had any snow in October. No worries. LOL!
Well, writing is one of my jobs. I actually have two that pay money and, like all mothers and wives, several that I do for free. The trouble is everyone else sees writing as something I do for fun, and it’s never as important as what they’ve got planned.
For example, we had several Fridays in a row which were canceled for snow days recently. Fridays are my only day free to write. Monday through Thursday are taken up with my day job that pays our bills, Saturday and Sunday are family days, and given my husband’s work schedule, I’m often solo-parenting those days. You can imagine my extreme frustration at losing my writing days to snow. Especially after I’d lost my writing days to holidays, illness, and more childcare issues since before Christmas.
Now, imagine my hopeful relief to see a phone call come through on these snowy Fridays from someone who is a childcare provider for my child. Had they recalled that I write on Fridays? Where they offering to let me bring my kid over to play with their child for the day? Could my writing day be saved?
Hahahah. No. In fact, it was someone calling to ask if I could watch their kid, too, while they went to the events they’d originally had planned for that day because, “I know you’re home on Fridays.” I agreed to help out believing that my day would come. And the next week when it snowed they canceled school again. The phone rang and it was a different sometime-childcare provider. I thought, “This is it! My payback for my good deed last week!”
“Hi, I was wondering if you could take Mandy for the day? I’ve got some errands I wanted to run and I know you’re home on Fridays.”
I should have said no. I should have said, “Actually, I can’t. I was hoping you’d take my child because I have work today.”
But I feel guilty. Because I’m at home doing something fun (my work) and I could be helping them and…and…and….
Recently, a friend of mine related a conversation she had with her husband about honoring her writing time. She writes sitting in her bed because she can’t concentrate that well at her desk, and her husband and child would constantly come in and loll about chatting with her while she worked. Finally, she said, “Okay, would it be okay if I came to your workplace, sat my ass down on your desk and started yakking at you while letting our kid tear around your cubicle? No, of course it wouldn’t. So, if we think of writing as my JOB, can you see how maybe this behavior is a bit of a problem?”
Hopefully this conversation with her husband will make an impression.
I sometimes think that I just need to be more selfish. But I feel selfish enough as it is taking all this time away from my family to spend with imaginary people. So, I’ve got to get past that if I ever want to make this writing thing truly work.
Thanks for listening.