26 June 2014

It's not all long lunches and trips to the park

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One of the reasons I love working from home* is the flexibility that comes with it. Not only do I get to plan my schedule around the kids' schedule, but I have the ability to work lots of extra hours when the munchkins are with Monty. I like that I can take breaks from work for walks in the afternoons or take a morning off to make robot costumes.**

But it's hard, too. Lately, work has been a bit intense (in a good way), and with Puck out of school for the summer, it seems that there's not enough time in the day to get through my task list each day. As it is, I take two days off a month (the first and fifteenth of each month, as long as I don't have any deadlines those days), and the rest of my time off is stolen here and there throughout the days.

One of the challenges I'm facing lately is balancing work with having Puck at home in the afternoons. When he was in pre-K, I had a couple of hours each afternoon to work. Tink was home, but she napped or played independently, giving me largely uninterrupted time to work. Now that Puck is home all day every day, things are a little different. Playing independently is punctuated with toys snatched from each other, pulled hair, and "I'm gonna tell Mama!" screamed from the play room. The blocks of time I have to work are much more fragmented when the munchkins are awake, so I've had to adjust my schedule.

Lately I find I'm much more productive in the morning and at night. I get some work done before the kids get up, while they're eating breakfast, and when they begin to play in the mornings. They're still waking up and excited about the day. Then, when they go to bed, I can work until my body tells me to stop and I go to bed.

I'm glad to be able to adjust my schedule like this, but it can be hard to maintain the balance, too. There are days when it seems my time is consumed by revisions and clients, and other days when it seems I've barely spent any time at my desk at all.

I tell myself it balances out, not only during the days when the munchkins are with me, but because I can play catch up when they're with Monty. And that self-proclaimed balance is what keeps me going.

I know in my heart that I can't imagine doing anything else. I love my job, and I adore the clients I work with, especially right now. It's been hard lately, making time for everything, but at the end of the day (even if that comes at one in the morning), I look forward to getting up and doing it all over again.

My life is not all long lunches and trips to the park, but some days are. And that makes it worth it.

*I know some parents work outside the home and love it. Some parents work outside the home and feel guilty. Some parents work inside the home and hate it. This post is in no way making judgments of other parenting situations. When it comes to our kids, we do what we have to do. I am lucky enough to be in a situation I love and that works for my family. That's all. No judgment here.

**We did make robot costumes this week, actually. It was fun.

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