It’s the second Monday in November and holy crap. I don’t know if I’m going to make it to the end of this month.
My house is a busy one for the next few weeks and yet I decided to write a novel. A NOVEL. Dude. We barely made it to the bus on time this morning. I almost sent my kids to school without their lunches. And yet I think I can write 50,000 words in November? We will have visitors. I have extra commitments at my kids’ school. My two front tires keep saying they are low on air. My house is a friggin mess. It’s crazy town up in here.
But you know what? It’s OK.
Despite the chaos, my willingness to jump into something I wasn’t ready for and did not have time for has taught me the value of meaningful work. When I feel connected to what I’m working on, it’s not a burden. And I haven’t had that feeling in a very long time.
I’m going to keep that lesson with me beyond November and beyond NaNoWriMo. It’s something I used to know but forgot about as life trudged on and bills needed to be paid and I got tired. But life is too short to spend chunks of my time on things that mean nothing to me with not enough meaningful work to balance it out.
Let me just pause this rant to address any thoughts we may be having about my “job” as a mother: This is about ME, not about my kids. Obviously I love them and am happy they are in my life. But their lives are their lives and my life is my life. One day they will be gone to college and have families of their own and I’ll be left with what? The ability to sing great lullabies? Master laundry skills? The power of listening to two questions at the same time?
No. If I do that, I disappear. And if you do that, you disappear, too.
When they are babies and toddlers and depend on you for everything, sure — it’s not realistic to do everything. You do have to put aside “meaningful work” sometimes. But don’t forget about it. It’s time will come.
When it does, you have to be willing to jump in and do it, whether you are ready or not.
And now I’m off to find pants I can wear in public, my coffee, and a bag to hold my computer so I can fix my tires AND write. Ready or not.