Double Duty

I am incredibly lucky.  After years and years of setbacks and struggle, I finally have my dream job.  It’s one that allows for a flexible schedule too.  I can even mostly do it from home.  Should one of my children fall ill at school I can be there within minutes to pick them up and I can usually juggle my schedule to accommodate work deadlines and midday parent-teacher conferences.  In the life of a working parent, these are huge advantages.  (Please don’t hate me for them, remember that dark, dark decade of struggle…).

This arrangement is not without its quirks, however.  Most of them are grounded in hubris.  With no clear demarcations between work and home life, you begin to think, “hey, I can sneak a little work in with my kids around, no problem.”

So I do things like risk taking an important call from an editor with tired and hungry children present only to be forced seconds later to dive into my bedroom to muffle the sounds of my five-year-old screaming from the toilet that she needs to be wiped.  Or while browsing with my children for summer reading books in the local independent bookshop, I decide that it’s time to announce to the owner that I have my first book coming out.  After all, it made sense to tell them.  Neighborhood author, community loyalty and all that.  It couldn’t hurt.  And why not do it right then, with my kids there.  Why wait? Continue reading