When I left my job as a hospital housekeeper in April of 2013, I left behind the blood, the tissue, the vomit and urine and most of all, the DRAMA. I left it to finish my novel and take a break after planning our wedding, the wedding of the century—ok, not quite that big, but an ordeal nonetheless. My break went from a month to three months to a year to almost two years. Initially, the plan was to take the break, then look for another job. What we discovered while having me home was that it was nice. There was someone at home to keep the house and yard up, and do the daytime running that would otherwise have to wait for Saturday or result in someone having to take time off from their daytime job. With no kids, I could do all of that and still had time to write and read, which, aside from horses, is inarguably my life’s passion. I also had time to cook and try all of those long-pinned Pinterest recipes. That benefited my husband and me greatly since we’d been guilty of dining out virtually every day of the week and wasting money and gaining weight.
Now that I’m essentially working full-time again, with the cleaning I do for several families and the position in the insurance agency, I’m scrambling for balance. Along with the increased out-of-the-house work, I still have to maintain my home and I also lend a hand to my disabled mother and 84-year-old grandmother. I share the responsibility of keeping Granny living independently in her own home with my mom. We shop for her and mom gets her to appointments. I mow her yard and clean her house and make sure her pills for the week get set up. Mom and I call her throughout the day to remind her to take her medication. For my mom, I do heavy lifting and offer moral support. Being disabled has caused her to be depressed and unable to push forward sometimes. Dealing with my own depression hasn’t always made me the best pep-talker, but I feel like if I go down, we all do. So I keep my head up, my nose just above the lapping waters of anxiety and depression at times, and keep pushing. With everything on my plate, it’s been easy to feel overwhelmed. I have to straighten the chaos.
I know I’m not alone. And that hurts my heart. This country is full of people who’ve given up on their dreams because they have to work. So many are busy working to live that they indeed forget to live. My husband is probably the example of this closest to me. I don’t want that to be me. I don’t want to give up the cooking new recipes and keeping us out of the fast food joints. I don’t want to forfeit my clean house and all the projects I have in mind for this summer and our home. Mostly, I don’t want to let my writing be put on a back burner again.
Right now, it feels like it might be on the back burner of someone else’s stove. I let that happen for years and that’s why it took me a decade to get my novel done. This blog and *d* and joining the writing community Scribophile has allowed me to enjoy writing like I’ve never been able before. I am desperate to not let it go. I don’t want to sell my dreams for a steady paycheck no matter how much I enjoy the work. There is a way to do it all. I know there is. There has to be.