It’s the title of the book I’m reading (by Lauren Graham, a fictionalized version of her early years in New York City trying to become an actress) and how I feel in this weird, building year in the story of me.
We’re about one month from getting to live in the house that was just a plot of grass last June when we moved out of the house on Highland Avenue. We loved Highland Avenue. My middle child misses it so much he has reinforced my ridiculous dream to one day get rich enough to buy it back and fix it up as a museum and shrine to our early years. Still, just look at this view from my future kitchen counter on which I posed the book with the title of this post. It’s the bright light at the end of this particular tunnel. But knowing life as I do, two nights ago I sat on the newly-installed floor in the empty room by my future fireplace and wrote in my journal that if something unexpected stops me from actually living in this house I’ve been planning on for a year, then at least I had that one moment in it when it totally felt like mine.
Last week my boys were on spring break from school, so I temporarily put into place my dream hours on the Day Job. (My 14-year-old, Drew, has suggested that I might have a better relationship with the Day Job if I didn’t call it that. “Maybe just say, ‘I’m going to work'”, was his suggestion. But I cling to the title. It’s both a nickname and a philosophy.) I used to call my dream hours “Full Time for the Co-Parent.” I planned to petition congress. At least one partner in a parenting team should get to have work hours that exactly match the school hours for the children. After this week, I’ve changed the name to “Creative Full Time”. Because 9-3 is also perfect for anyone who wants to paint or write or run a charity. It’s for those of us who have a job that pays the bills and a career we’re building and doing for free.
One thing I know: Balancing my life is not actually the job of Congress, and it’s not something my workplace owes me. It’s just one more super fun thing I get to figure out on my own. Someday, someday maybe.