I might well be 32, but to me September still feels like the start of the year. Might have something to do with the fact that until last month I was working in education. Or maybe it’s all those crayon sales or the new backpack smell that assails you every time you go into Target. Whatever it is I can’t fight it. Over here September = Brand Spanking New Year. Forget January, I’m all about September resolutions.
Usually that means that I resolve to cook more healthy meals, or maybe clean the house more often, some red letter years I even resolve to fold laundry more often, but let’s be honest, that hasn’t happened in a long while. This year I have to raise the stakes a little more.
OK. A lot more.
I stopped punching the clock and started freelancing at the end of July. The first two weeks of August I futzed around, went to the gym, fulfilled my paid writing assignments, bounced from coffee shop to coffee shop hunting for free WiFi, tried to clean my house in preparation for the arrival of my family, cooked wholesome meals, and generally felt overwhelmed and at loose ends. I dropped the ball on the non paying gigs I’m committed to; projects I believe in and want to be a part of. I didn’t get any work done on my personal projects. I didn’t fold nearly enough (read: any) laundry.
Then we went on vacation for two weeks. I breathed a lot and found some semblance of perspective. I no longer feel like I’m mired in bubblegum. That’s today. Tomorrow I’ll be right back in the thick of it.
I need to find a way to balance everything: family, home, sleep, exercise, paying work, non paying work, and marketing myself so that maybe one day the paying work will outweigh the non paying work. I have to find a consistent place to work, where I won’t have to worry about overstaying my welcome. I have to find the balance between paying for gas and eating lunch out every day. And I have to make it all be sustainable so I can keep doing it week in, week out.
When I look at the sheer amount of what needs to get done in the time allotted every day I want to cry, or hyperventilate, or both. I want to lower my arms and admit defeat before even starting. But I can’t do that. I can’t give up on my dream before giving myself a chance. Can I now? So, in the words of Anne Lamott I’m going to take it bird by bird. I’m going to write extensive to do lists and I’m going to plug through each item one by one. I’m going to remember to breathe and I’m going to remember to smell the roses along the way.
This September I resolve to get organized enough to live my dream and make it all work. I sure hope it’s enough.