I know I have already mentioned the fact that I have re-entered the workforce. But I just glossed over it last time I think without being nearly smug enough. I mean I might as well be a poster girl for The Woman Who Can Have It All. Gainful, enjoyable employment, children, marriage, a house in the country – look at me, living the dream.
Except that the country house is our all the time house, it’s a mess and I’m driving a great many kilometres in a clapped out car that could any minute shit itself on the Tasman Bridge. The work is challenging and amazing and fun but I’m terrified I won’t do it well enough and let the whole team down (this brand of terror probably has a name; something like, IamoutoftouchandoldlookatallthesebrightyounthingsIshouldgohomeandweedthegarden). The children are asking why I’m not collecting them from school as promptly (and why I’m
really FUCKING a bit snarky), I haven’t been able to find a suitable time for a meeting with the teachers since I was too late making a time for parent teacher interviews, my hair is all scaffy and neglected and I have a weird feeling in my tooth that should be looked at.
And here’s the thing, I’m only working three days a week, and only during school hours. Mostly as a copywriter for an arts festival. That sounds povo, it’s not just any old arts festival, it’s Ten Days on the Island arts festival (biannual, Tasmanian, statewide, amazing) and I’m writing the copy for their program brochure.
Anyway, whatever the work, it should leave plenty of time for housekeeping, parenting, meal planning, cooking, grooming, health care, landscaping (garden and body), fitness, blog maintenance, social obligations, cleaning the fucking fish bowl and writing the book you want to write.
The trouble with living in the country is that if you need your hair done or your tooth looked at then once you’ve dropped the children at school there’s no point going home. Which means cleaning day is disrupted, the dusting doesn’t get done for another week and you’ll have free city time in which you’ll likely pop into the shops and buy an ear cuff and pair of white sneakers with a rose gold tongue.
A forty one year old should probably not wear an ear cuff unless they’re a rock star. Or should they?
Anyway, my point is (and I’ve said it before) is HATS OFF to full time working mothers. Superwoman would shit herself if she was given your loads. And to all working mothers. And to mothers. Sorry dads, this is not your moment, I’ll have to dedicate a post to you another day. Maybe.
And I have another few points. I have felt exhilarated being amongst the workforce. The taskforce. After years and years of focusing on my own little patch of production (which has been lovely and purposeful and mostly fulfilling), it’s really really lovely to be a part of something bigger, something non-domestic that might involve external affirmation and non-obligatory you’re-doing-goods.
And new people. All these people, doing wonderful things and having such insights and talents and crafts and passions. Young people being so much more productive and focused than I was at their age (I was very busy being restless and thin), artists doing simply wonderful, dedicated things that don’t give any sort of nod to superficiality or The Bachelor or unkindness.
It’s been a good decade since I’ve had to be in a city’s peak hour (we’re talking Hobart here so I guess it’s nothing but it sure is something since I last tackled it). I don’t mind it though, not yet. I’m part of the hubbub. There are things happening everywhere, stuff to see. A man singing to himself at the traffic lights, a woman with three pugs waiting to cross a road (my Bessie would love that sight, I think to myself), a young man jogging in a tracksuit that looks like a 1980’s German gymnast, an enormous crane (Ed would like that), a speeding ambulance, people everywhere walking with intent, some in active wear, some with purple hair, lots in clippy heels. No one appears to be pottering.
These are the rushing years. I am partly pleased to be among them, partly frightened that the pottering, milky, pram years have already gone, and gone so fast.
This is just a taste. I will finish the program within a few months (I sincerely hope, for the sake of the team) and I maybe I’ll come back to the country days and the garden and the after school activities. Maybe I’ll take the children to the city more, for the cranes and the sirens and the sites. Or maybe the snowball has started rolling and I won’t be able to get off (have I mixed two idioms there?). Maybe I’ll get some clippy heels.
It’s Friday and I’m weary and rambling. Friday means something in the rushing years.
Happy Friday. Thank you for staying for my ramblings. x
(I’m not proofreading, sorry). xx