Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Be-calmed and Be-plexed

Some days I make this ‘betwixt and between’ thing work. I duck and I dive and I shuttle between identities so that the different parts of my life weave together into a life-enhancing fabric. On those days I am ever-so-post-modern slash man (dad/artist/aka-de-mic/smug middle class project man). Not so today!

Today I am conflicted. I find myself in a situation that many women across the globe will recognize as their lot. I am without childcare on a work day.

This is nobody's fault (except possibly mine) but it still means that I am juggling.

I have faced this situation in the past of course. For example, I once took part in an interminable online conference call while simultaneously drawing rabbits (endless rabbits). Similarly, I often used to read Bakhtin while balancing a sleeping baby on my chest. However, things have got a lot more lively since those long off days. Now I have to be in-house entertainment system, home educator, chef and clown. I can not do these things and work at the same time.

Fortunately, I was not planning to be working for trAce today. Equally fortunately, I am self-employed for half of my life so that I will not get a bollocking from an unsympathetic boss for being one nanosecond late. Perhaps less fortunately, I don’t earn when I don’t do. I have commitments and I have deadlines…and some of them are getting quite tight. This means that I feel stressed when I don’t do!

But let’s put this all in context. The sun is shining. My little one is only going to be this age once. I refuse to put on a video. I refuse to shun her in favour of the PC. Similarly, I have stopped myself putting on my expeditors head and ringing around the neighbours. I am not looking for warehousing for my wee one. I have told myself be brave and take a chance. Spend some time with her. Spend some quality time with her. No laptop. No phone. No pager. They are just not necessary. I tell myself it will not be long before you crave for this kind of opportunity.


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