Meet Izzy and Olly. Izzy is now 12 and doesn’t wear these cute pigtails anymore. Now her hair’s dyed black with purple highlights. Olly is 9 and has lost her baby curls, but not those blue eyes.
For this first post, I thought I’d try to figure out why I’m starting a blog. It seems to come down to purely selfish reasons. Yes, it’s one way to keep my mother informed as to what we’re up to, but there’s more to it than that. I plan to turn some of these musings into actual articles, then sell them for real money and become rich and famous along the way. I also hope that BetweenParents will become a site where parents share questions, concerns and successes.
Let’s start off with one of my questions: How do you balance doing your creative work and parenting? For me, the ideal conditions for writing poetry involve lots of quiet, solitary time that includes reading, making coffee, puttering around and getting caught up in research that may have little to no bearing on the piece being written. Unstructured time like this is a precious commodity. Being able to take this kind of time without feeling guilty is extremely rare.
Sometimes I think it would be nice to just be a lover of the arts. To be able to read a novel or visit a museum and not have to take notes or circle key phrases or wonder how I’m ever going to be this good, this accomplished. But I can’t give it up. If I go too long without writing, I get mean. Ask my kids and husband. They’ll tell you that I’m a much nicer person when I’m writing. After a while, all the cleaning, sweeping and cooking gets frighteningly monotonous. Without time to bask in the mysteries and suffering of human existence, I feel unfulfilled and angry.
So please, ring in and share how you find your balance between doing what you love and caring for those you love. Don’t worry if that balance is fleeting, something you’ve yet to try or seems to occur with some mysterious alignment of the planets. We still want to hear from you.