The wagon that they made me pull has been in my family since I was a kid. The day was hot, but a short adventure from my own devices and their coloring was needed. They piled in with my straw bag, coffee, lunch, plants, back home, then an evening movie on the list. As of late, this is how a few of my work-days have been. Squeezing what I can in early a couple of times a week, while they self-occupy. My list is never done, and as of late, I’ve had to surrender to a rather light (almost non-existent) gratification high of finishing long work lists. I know that in some ways, it is a grand act of patience, understanding and so much more.
My mind is often busy looking at the clock tic and toc–simultaneously wanting to do one last email and just go and take them out and frolic. These days, everything takes a bit longer. Packages, a week or so to open. Emails, take days to respond. Home projects, slowly but surely, somehow done in the juggle as well. Equally, I am learning the unfinished business of business, no matter what your business is.
I am finding less time to get down about it (less being relative. My brain likes to ruminate if not cared for). There is more of a hard-earned attempt at taking full inventory of what’s expected of me. And maybe, for the first time in forever, understanding that I am the only one placing these expectations. I am the only one punishing myself if I didn’t meet my expectations. There is no oversight board telling me I am mothering unwell. Or, saying, that I am running a business half-assed because I am trying to mother well-but also within the summer blur.
Whatever is being done is done in-between, with a little fun, often, and unfinished. There is no magic cure for working for yourself in the summer. There is no magic cure for parenting in my unique situation, or yours. But there are, yes, things we can do to help the wagon not tip over, and keep the music rolling along the way. All because my desire to spend time with them (and save money on childcare) is matched with my desire and love for working and necessity to provide. That means for a while, I’ll miss the gratification high of it all being done and done-well.
A while ago, I called it the summer surrender, but I think, it’s just growing. It is just growing with the pulls and pushes of the wave of life. And I’m happy to be in it. Whatever capacity it is. And even when it, is just me spinning atop my head, pulling a wagon up a hill with iced coffee, two kids, emails buzzing, essays-half written, and a mess somewhere and somehow. Somewhere down below or right in my hand, is a gratefulness to have been trusted to be given all of it, and not f it up too terribly.