Monday, June 30, 2008

Kids and Writing

My son Mason has the week off from Pre-Kindergarten. We enrolled him in a year-round school here in Saint Paul, and the traditional "summer" vacation happens all throughout the year with a week of here and there and months off in the winter, spring, and summer.

I'm lucky in that a well-timed lay off allowed my family to consider the feasibility of me staying home full-time. So I don't have another job other than writing... and Mason. I'd had this great image of being a stay-at-home parent that involved lots of writing time, bon bons, and bubbly baths. The reality is that I feel like I had more time to write when I worked full-time at the Minnesota Historical Society.

When Mason's in half-day, I reserve those precious morning hours for checking e-mail, working out (every other day), and generally scurrying around doing things best done without a squirrely five year-old.

I STILL do most of my writing at night when the household is settled, everyone's been fed (including cats and fish), and he's asleep.

Not that I'm complaining, really, because I love being a home (I sometimes wonder how we managed to keep the house clean *before* and its not terribly clean now,) but it's surprising how little changed in terms of writing time. I keep thinking I'll have MORE, but the other things I need to do seem to find ways to fill the available space.

When people ask me if I'm a full-time writer, I usually say, "No, I'm a full-time parent, part-time writer."

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

2 comments:

Angie Fox said...

Great post, Tate. And, yes, I'm still waiting for the bubble baths and bon bons too. Maybe next year...

Natalie Hatch said...

My kids think if I go near the bath that it's a free for all and they toddle in with their toys and smiles... so bath time becomes fun time with mummy.
I write whenever they're settled into something, such as playing with their toys, watching Dora or Thomas the Tank Engine. Then when they go to bed. Oh and my hubby does a great job of helping out in the evening so I get more time there. It's hard to juggle but it's worth it.