Thursday, November 15, 2012

Sometimes, we just have to let go

I hope you aren't wanting to see any pictures of quilting. We went to the zoo this weekend, and now I can't find my camera.

But, there isn't much to show anyway. Foolish me thought my schedule would improve once my daughter got in school. I wouldn't call 30 minutes in the drop-off line, 30 minutes in the pick up line, and 30-60 minutes of homework a night an improvement. (Only because she hates doing it & drags it out - we're working on that.)

What little there is to show can't be shown. Ho Ho Ho and all that.

My main purpose in writing today is to try to organize some thoughts I've had lately. And accept some things. You know those mothers that have it all together, the ones who can manage a full-time job, keep the house running smoothly, and take good care of their children? I'm not one of those. I'm the one chronically late, a tad messy, and with stuff - even important stuff - always slipping through the cracks. I will admit to being disorganized, but even more than that is that I just don't seem to have the stamina of some women. I need down time, regularly.

I would consider my job to be the biggest obstacle to me having down time. For the last 2 years, I've worked for a company with a weekly deadline. That weekly deadline means that every week of the year, I have to accomplish the same amount of work regardless of what else is going on. Whether I'm sick, whether my daughter is sick, whether I have car trouble and have to spend the day at the repair shop, whether it's Christmas - it doesn't matter. Their exact words last year "the magazine cannot suffer because it's Christmas." If I sound a bit whiny, I am a bit whiny. The upside to this job is that I can do it from home, and it's not quite 40 hours. I generally drop the little one off at school and work straight through, eating at my desk, until time to pick her up, and that's usually sufficient (plus Saturdays). And when something requires my attention during the day, I can attend to it and just work after dinner. So, flexibility and the fact that I can keep my daughter out of any kind of daycare are huge benefits that usually overcome the lack of time off. Usually. Until life gets in the way, and then I get a little angry.

My second obstacle to down time is the running of the house. My husband works a crazy amount of overtime himself, so other than paying the bills and the yard work, all the house is on me. My current schedule is to get up at 6, get me and the little one ready and her off to school, work until time to pick her up, homework after, then cleaning the kitchen and dinner, then bath and then bed. In that amount of time, I might have 30-60 minutes of downtime, and I tend to try to squeeze in some sewing then. But by the time she goes to bed, housework is out of the question as I have no more energy. So my off days are spent on that. Sometimes. The housework is the ball I drop the most often.

For most of last year, I was adamant I would not give up my hobby. I have always loved making beautiful things, and when I began quilting, I loved it even more for the fact that these things were also so practical. My doilies were beautiful - stunning - but they just sit there and look good. I love my quilts, and purse, and pillows, the things we use every day. But over the course of the last month, I've had to do some hard thinking about my limitations, and the sewing is the only thing that can give.

Oh, don't worry, I won't give it up entirely:) But I've decided I need to be more focused with my time and make sure each project is worth my time. Since it's obvious I'm going to have less time than I did last year, I want to use it more wisely. The quick and easy projects don't satisfy me. They didn't in crochet, and they don't in quilting. So next year is going to look very different. I've decided I would rather produce one stunning quilt a year than 100 smaller, easier projects. So, this is my trade off for having to cut way back on my sewing - I'll get to sew fancier stuff. I'm not sure that makes sense to anyone outside of my brain, but it's helping me accept my current way-too-tight schedule.

Sorry for the rambling, not at all lighthearted post, but I just needed to process these thoughts myself, and provide anyone who cared with an explanation not only to my silence over the last month, but probably my comparative silence over the next year or more.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds as if you are doing the right thing for you and I hope everything works out for you. You'll stay in my Reader and I will look forward to seeing your 'fancier stuff':-)