Embracing the Next Step

Jojo Starts Yasla

I’ve signed Jojo up for daycare. If she gets her final vaccine and all her medical exams in time, she’ll start on September nineteenth. As with Peatuk, part of me is so ready for this, but part of me isn’t at all. I am starting to think the definition of ambivalence is the moment a parent leaves behind a child for the first time.

While I’m ready to be an adult again and have more adult time, I will also miss Jojo like crazy. My relationship with her is stronger than ever. I’m completely in awe of her and in love with her, and not having my little pal with me every moment of every day is going to feel strange to say the least. 

But at least she seems ready. She knows where her school is, points to the playground when we pass it, and was happy to meet the director. She’s starting to potty train, doing okay feeding herself, and can put herself to sleep. All benchmarks met. Now I just have to get myself emotionally ready for the separation. 

I Return to Work

With her going back to school, I’ll be returning to work. I’m excited to have time to string together logical thoughts for more than five minutes without, “Hi mommy,” or “Boobies!” interrupting me. But at the same time, I’m frightened. When I went on maternity leave a year and a half ago, I pretty much lost all of my clients. This means I’ll be starting from scratch, and is both terrifying and liberating.

It’s terrifying because I like to bring in enough money to cover my salary and more. I don’t like floating in some sort of financial limbo, not knowing where my finances are coming from. We’re lucky that our company is in a somewhat financially secure position at this point, but it’s definitely taken me the past five years to get to a point where I can start to lay some of MY financial burden on Nikola, sharing the responsibility of it all.

It’s liberating because I can change paths. Some of my past writing assignments I have loved. Writing about the latest psychedelic research? Bring it on. Writing closely with people who have a clear vision? Yes. But churning out click-bait or SEO stuffing hogwash? No. I want to be done with that part of my writing, even if it paid decently. So I am looking into other ways that I can bring money into the firm.

I’m learning to code. Slowly but surely. That will not have financial returns any time soon, but in a couple of years I may be good enough to start making some money with that. I’m also considering coaching in public speaking. (Ironic if you know how terrified I am of public speaking, but I assure you that everyone I’ve coached has done exceptionally). I’m also supposed to be coming up with some products for our company (as opposed to services) but I’m not sure how that will go. 

I Keep Writing

For the past year and a half I’ve been writing novels. I’ve finished two novels. One I queried, with some positive feedback but no offers of representation. The second one I’m getting ready to start querying next month. I’m also working on a third.

When I started writing, I gave myself a deadline. I pretty much said I needed to have made “some sort of progress” by the time I went back to work if I wanted to continue. In the back of my mind, “some sort of progress,” was getting an agent. Obviously, I’m not there. So, the logical part of me says I should back-burner my writing again. It’s not a financially viable past time, even if I was agented and getting published.

But dammit, I want to keep writing! I like it. It feels good. So I’m just going to keep doing it. I may never get published. (Okay, I don’t believe that for a second. There’s no way that someday, I won’t at least have a small publishing contract). Either way, I’m going to keep dedicating an hour or two a day to writing, which will be easier once baby girl is in daycare.

I Take Care of My Spirit 

As a mother of young children, I have neglected a lot of my health. My mental health has been on the fritz since I had Peatuk. My physical health is pretty weak. I want to give more attention to these things. But one of the things I’ve really neglected is my spirit. With no alone time, basic spiritual exercises: yoga, meditation, running, walks in nature… these things have been stuffed in the corner as unimportant.

But I really am ready to start connecting with the world again- with other people and, ultimately, with a greater spirit. So I hope to give more time to my spirituality. 

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