I’ll have to apologize for not posting as much as I had been recently. After celebrating my birthday, and then my daughter’s first birthday, I’ve been reevaluating quite a bit. I’m asking myself questions such as; “Am I now where I want to be in my life?” and “Where do I want to be this time next year?” The truth is, I have everything I’ve ever wanted when it comes to my family life. My husband is the most amazing man I have ever met. While we face the frustrations and hurdles of daily life like everyone does, we make the perfect team. We work together, talk things out, and solve our problems one at a time. RT is growing so fast and rapidly developing into quite the character. She’s inquisitive, and goofy, and oh-so-stubborn.
Still, there are other areas of my life that I expected to have progressed further toward my goals as I approach my 30’s. For example, I’ve been a writer all my life. My first publication was a poem at the age of 11. I would then go on to publish over a dozen more before self-publishing a full book of my own poetic endeavors. Over the years, I have started and made considerable progress on multiple novels, and this is not my first blog, either. I do maintain this blog (however infrequently as of late) and have a decent readership, but I’ve always wanted to write fantasy stories. There’s really nothing holding me back except for myself, but this has always been a calling of mine, so I need to step back and get out of my own way.
I’ve started writing again just recently. About three weeks ago, I wrote two short stories in a single week. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with them yet, if anything, but I felt so in my element while working on them that I then decided to pick up a novel I had started years ago. Reading the half-finished first draft again, I found that I could do it better, so I started it over from the beginning. As I’m writing this on the morning Thursday, August 11th, I have roughly 17,500 words typed out, and a much better idea of where the story is going. RT has gotten into a more steady sleep cycle again, so I’m usually up about two hours before her on any given morning, which is when I sit down to have my coffee, write, and listen to my favorite music (quietly).
I’ve realized that this is something I need to do for myself to feel whole. As a stay-at-home-mom, it’s so easy to get lost in the day-to-day activities. You give so much of yourself to the little lords and ladies of the house – entertaining them, keeping the environment clean, and just trying to maintain. Finding this time for myself has meant that there are some things that I do need to give up. After the cats destroyed the seedlings I had in the kitchen, I decided to let gardening go for the summer. I’ve been considering tearing out the planter box next year instead of making another attempt to clear it and plant in it. I can always build another one in the future, and the wood of this one is rotten and falling apart. I just don’t think it’s worth it anymore.
My husband and I moved into this house with the dream of homesteading, and there are plenty of homesteading principles that apply to our daily life, but now that we have a child, we also have a deeper appreciation for convenience. We had talked at times about adopting alpacas, goats, or even ducks. At this point, more animals just seem like added chores. We’re happy with the five we have, and even they at times can be quite the handful. We still try to have as little impact on the environment as possible, and we’re careful with the money we have, but I can’t spend as much time as I had been focusing on DIY projects if I’m going to maintain my sanity and my sense of self.
As far as I’m concerned, I’m still in the prime of my life. Just because I decided to start a family doesn’t mean that my life is over. I still have plenty of work to do on discovering who I am, and I can still pursue what makes me happy. I don’t have to feel guilty about looking forward to nap time, or the nights RT spends away at her grandparents’ houses. I went a full year spending less that 12 hours away from my kid total. That’s enough for anyone to become overwhelmed and lose track of their own desires. It hasn’t been healthy for me. I didn’t even realize how stressed I was until RT spent her first night over at her Grammy’s house. That evening with my husband was so relaxed. We actually had the time for once to play video games together while watching a show with graphic violence on TV. It was the next morning before RT had come home that I started writing the first short story that I mentioned. It truly was a revelation. I can’t give my child everything she deserves when I’m lacking of myself.
I want my daughter to grow up seeing what a fulfilled life looks like. Even if I’m unable to achieve all my wildest dreams, I want to set an example of someone who will always continue working toward what I really want, without sacrificing what is most important. I don’t want her to grow up with a mother who is a slave to the household. I am so much more than that, and I want her to aspire to be something great. I became a full-time mother because I couldn’t imagine a better way to spend my days. She could feel the same way as she gets older, or she may wish to pursue other passions. I want to show her that both are possible as long as you have the dedication and the ability to balance.