…maybe my return will “stick” this time? 😛
First, I want to thank those of you who have stuck with me despite such a long absence. I really appreciated the comments and messages you’ve sent during the last year while I’ve been “away.” These helped me feel more like myself during the very hard first year with baby Adelle in our household.
Oh boy, has it been a year.
With my return to the blogosphere, I should warn you that the focus of my blog is probably going to shift a bit because my life has shifted so much since Adelle’s arrival. I love my baby to pieces, but being a parent is hard work. ADHD or not, this is the hardest job I’ve ever done. My dissertation comes close, but this is still way harder and rewarding in ways academia (or any job) could never be. This shift might annoy some of you who are not parents. Sorry 😦 The polish will also probably be off the writing because this is a task that will have to be reserved for after bedtime, when I’m already tired and still have work to do before heading to bed. My goal is one post per week. I might get to more than one per week during the summer, and I might struggle to get to one per week once the school year starts back up again. We’ll see how things go.
Moreso than before, I’m finding that it’s incredibly important to have reasonable goals in mind for each day, both at work and at home. I’m still keeping my task list going, and I’ve instituted a new electronic system for tracking paper-writing progress (more about this in a future entry). I don’t write down the home goals, usually because they stare me in the face and can’t be forgotten as easily as relatively nebulous work goals. I’ve also found that I need to be nice to myself when I fall short at home or at work, and to keep things in perspective.
Off of my blog, my first home goal for tonight is to take out the trash. This will involve sneaking into Adelle’s room to empty her diaper pail (YUCK). This doesn’t sound like a big challenge, but it’s tricky to do this without making lots of noise. Plus, once I have the trash ready to go, I have to open the garage door to take it outside… and of course, Adelle’s room is directly over the garage and she’s not the heaviest of sleepers. If we make it through the trash without waking her up, then we run the risk again when we unload & reload the dishwasher (i.e., a task that must be done daily with 3 people living in a house, especially when one of them goes through about 10 sippy cups in a day and loves to watch her spoon fall on the floor after she drops it from the highchair). Usually she sleeps until the point when I *just* sit down with my cup of herbal tea…. To non-parent readers, this evening’s plan of action probably sounds incredibly lame. Readers who are parents will likely understand how difficult it is to get these two little tasks done after chasing after a toddler for the last few hours after putting in a day at work.
Of course, since Adelle’s arrival the house has suffered. The home goals are much smaller now than they used to be, and we have lower standards for what is acceptable. The same has happened at work. I really didn’t write at all for most of Adelle’s first year. I spent most of the year trying to do a full-time job on 60% time. It didn’t work so well: I was exhausted all the time from interrupted sleep and couldn’t focus very well because I was so anxious about not making progress. It’s just now that things are starting to get back on track: I just submitted an article last month, the first one I’ve written in about 18 months, and I’m incredibly proud to have done so. The next step will be easier, because the first is always the hardest…
…and with that, I will now take that first step toward taking out the trash 🙂