Monday, January 12, 2009

And This is Why I Can't be Super-WAHM Every Day...

Or, "This is Why I Can't Stick to a Schedule"

It seems like it never fails: I craft my plan for the day or the week, carefully including all the different aspects of my busy week, then something derails it.

Some days I have monumental plans for being the ultimate writer, a model of efficiency, speeding through first drafts as if there was a fire sale on verbs. Then it happens: the interviewee is out of the office all day despite our scheduled appointment, or the school calls and I have to pick up my daughter, or the dog is sick and I have to haul out the carpet cleaner immediately or we'll have a weird green stain by the back door. (Okay, the last part was TMI maybe.)

Other days, the homemaking side of my life is at the forefront of my plans. I'm going to wash, dry and fold 7 loads of laundry, get $300 worth of groceries for $75, and finally repot that poor, wilting houseplant. Then the washer breaks, or the email dings with a rush assignment or, as is the case today, my favorite couponing site is kaput.

I'm not very flexible, really. Or maybe I'm just stretched so far that even ElastiGirl would snap under similar circumstances. Whenever a monkey-wrench is thrown into my plans, it takes me some time to wrap my head around this new course of events and switch over to a new groove. (<--That paragraph, my dears, is pure genius use of cliches and mixed metaphors. Not to be attempted by mere amateurs! :P )

Not every day is like this, of course. It's just that for every day that being a work-at-home mother seems to be the ideal lifestyle, there's a day when getting up early to shower, dress and commute seems easier.

I know it isn't true, but it's a nice little fantasy that wahm-types occasionally indulge in. It's ironic, then, that when I had an office job, I dreamt that being a writer working from home would be all rose petals and chocolate.

This has been another installment of the ongoing whine that can be heard across the Internet. :) It's not really all that bad - it's just that my $75 might only buy me $75 worth of groceries today.

2 comments:

Serenity Now! said...

Carolyn,

Were we switched at birth or something? I have thought exactly the same way ... in fact I struggle to explain this thought process to my husband, how my intentions are so much bigger than what is actually happens...

I think that somehow we have to make peace with the fact that we aren't going to be machines. That there will be things left over like that last bite of meatloaf that you know you SHOULD finish, but just don't wanna.

When I'm at work, I wish I were at home writing. When I'm at home writing, I wish someone was here to tell me what to do or crack the whip or something...

I think it boils down to choosing to be happy in our situation, whatever it is. Accepting that we cannot do it all.

Plus, for Christians like you and I, we need to remember that we have to lay burdens down and empty ourselves so that we can be available for God to fill us with his spirit. If we are so efficient at getting things done, we'd never need God to help us with anything. A little weakness is a great place for God to gain a foothold in our life. (And, when you think about it either God or "that other guy" will use the foothold...)

Carolyn said...

Yesterday turned out better than I expected, actually. Although I didn't leap tall buildings in a single bound, I did get $160 worth of groceries for $89, came up with a news hook/timely angle for an article I'm working on, did some brainstorming for an small biz organization, spent QT with the family and even posted here. :)

You're right that, as Christians, we have a pretty handy burden-bearing service. ...I had to hold a few scriptures in my mind or I would have conceded failure: Philippians 4:13 and Romans 8:28, among others.