Monday, February 08, 2010

Balance Shmalance (or, I Need More of Everything)

What I want to do:

Take better pictures
Sew a groundhog ipod cozy
Be more fun as a parent
Get back to sewing clothes for myself and the kids
Make a crown for Ada
Read more
Laugh more

But I feel so stretched as it is. Tonight after dinner I suddenly literally could not keep my eyes open. Retreating from table to couch, I lay down and fell asleep. I woke up only when Ada and Chris were getting ready to go upstairs.

I don't know if the answer is to work more or work less. Right now I am entering a busy time at work, which means more working in my "off" hours. So far it is not too much, but I look at a friend/coworker who has put in a super-human number of unpaid hours and wonder when I would be able to say it was too much. Financially I need my job, and intellectually I really enjoy it. I also enjoy that I work part-time. I want to spend more than two days a week with my children. And yet, at the end of one such day with them I am emotionally and physically spent.

How do you find balance, or is that a myth?


  1. I am very bad at balance. Staying home with Violet is really the only reason that I accomplish anything. When I worked, that's all I had energy for.

    Balance is a constant battle.

  2. I don't balance - I oscilate wildly (I'm also on an unconscious quest to put as many Smiths songs into comments today as I can manage, I just realise) been ferociously working and slacking, both in a home AND work context. I really need to work at that. If I'm very motivated at work, I do tend to overdo it, though.

  3. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Balance. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ... excuse me ...

  4. I look at it as balance over a lifetime. When you were a kid you got to play and learn all the time. Now you are working so your kids can play and learn. When they grow up, you'll have more time to rest and reflect and be creative.

  5. I think balance with infants is a myth, yes. It's only now that Ray is four that I feel any of my ability to do anything outside the exhaustion of work-and-children return. Of course, now I am pregnant again. :/ But I know that in the larger scheme of things, this time between birth and kindergarten - which now stretches out infinitely, sucking all my time and energy - is a relatively short one. I will have decades after this to focus on my career, and decades after my children are grown and my career is over (predicated on an expectation of roughly average life expectancy) to focus on other things.

    But, you know, balance. Not so much with the under-three set. I'm hoping that I carry some of my current Zen about this into maternity leave and beyond, but I dunno. It's hard to lose the few things you do for yourself that are "extra." I sympathize, at the same time as I am wildly jealous about the part where you can work part-time. I keep trying to figure out how I can make that work and failing.

  6. seriously? this blog is still here????

    mommy blogs are so OVER! HAHA.

    does anyone even read these boring things?

  7. I would agree balance with infants is very hard. Balance with two infants and a pre-schooler?

    The only way I've found to stay balanced is to do less. Pretty much the only personal things I do are running, reading, and taking pictures. I do a weekly girls night at my house so I can see all my friends in one shot.

    I think balance is an ongoing process, kind of like potty training. No end in sight, constant work on it. Some good days, some bad days.

  8. Dear Anonymous: you mean anyone _other_ than you?

  9. Ha.
    It ebbs and flows and ebbs again.

  10. it's a myth.

    or so i've heard.

    you can have it all, nora. you just can't have it all at once.

  11. I keep my life balanced with a very expensive crack cocaine habit. I never have to sleep.

    I wish I had an answer for you. Shoot. I wish I had an answer for ME!

  12. I think balance is something you look back on and realize, "wow I had it!"

  13. Cut yourself some slack. The twins aren't even one yet! I don't even remember the first year of my twins' lives--it's all a blur! Balance will come. Relax and don't stress it.
    I also agree with Natika--balance is something you look back on :) V true.

  14. Myth. I'm leaving my job because the pseudo-balancing I'm doing is *almost literally* doing my family in.

  15. I do think it's a myth. I also think it's only been a short time since you've been back at work and you should give yourself a break. :)

  16. i say myth, Gwen would say "hold everything lightly."

    i dunno.

    i know i would hug you and talk too much if we were discussing it in person, tho, and what i would say would amount to the single sentence i wrote above.

    and i would mean it, and i would mean my intense caring for you in wishing i could make it better, somehow.

    or i could just let you nap and feed you chocolate when you awake.

    or whatever.

  17. or Gwen would say it's a myth.

    (i just read down thru the comments and saw hers *after* i wrote mine.)

    (apparently i know her not as well as i thot.)