Monday, October 25, 2010

October: Day 25

Day 25 - your day, in great detail

I dread answering this one because there is so much in flux still, after 10 months. I quit my job a month before Lyra died for stress reasons and planned to stay home with her. We didn't bring her home, we moved right away and I had a really hard time functioning normally for a while. I didn't have a job I needed to get back to, and L didn't put pressure on me to find a new one. I really only wanted to get pregnant again, and thought that getting a new job, only to quit again was stupid. I did try for some part-time jobs, but they didn't pan out. I got pregnant, and we both decided I would just stay home with the added appointments I'd end up having, and because it worked out ok for us to have me home. 

I know people view "what you do" as a huge part of our identities as people. So I feel ashamed most times when people ask. My child died. I have no job. Who am I then? I do art, but I don't really sell it or do art shows. In regards to being a part of the educated portion of society, I'm the lowest of low, because I'm not contributing anything. I don't make money for my family. I don't volunteer to any organization. I don't mother, nanny or babysit. But I have to keep coming back to L and I...what works for us? What are we comfortable with? And that is really what matters the most.

This is a "normal" day as of late, as I don't have much holding me to a schedule:

  • Wake up at 8a, in time to see L off to work at 8:30a.
  • Eat breakfast...usually cereal, a bagel, or toast/peanut butter
  • Read blogs/email from 9-10, and try to comment and respond
  • Eat a snack of fruit or whatever is on hand at 10a.
  • From 10-11:30 is good errand running time...groceries, mail, Target. Or I clean the apartment.
  • 11:30ish is when L comes home and we do lunch and watch whatever we've missed on Hulu or catching up on Netflix. He gets an hour for lunch, and works a mile away, so he usually is home for lunch everyday. Somedays I meet up with friends for lunch.
  • 12:30-1:30p is usually my nap time. Yes, I love naps. Immensely. Dinah curls up with me for a snooze too. I eat a snack upon waking up.
  • 1:30p-5:30p -On to art time, more errand time, blogging/commenting time, meeting up with people time, or still cleaning...depends on the day. I eat another snack at 4ish (I eat something about every 2 hours).
  • L gets home sometime between 5:30 and 6p. We figure out's chili weather now, so I've been anxious to make that, and soups more often.
  • We are real social duds most nights, so we're home a lot. We watch more netflix tv shows (Psych right now), play video games, have more art time, & crochet. Occasionally we hit up a coffee shop to write or draw.
  • Bedtime ranges from 8:30p - 10:30p. L has restless legs, so sometimes I stay up and do more stuff. Other times I hit the sack and he comes to bed later.
And that's about it.


  1. I know so many women (myself included) who feel guilt for being at home and "not contributing". I try to keep in mind that I do a lot of errand type things that keep things running, and it relieves my husband from having to do anything when he gets home from work.

    Like you said, in the end, it's all what works for you and your family. There isn't just one way to be in this world.

  2. Sounds like your days are just what you need. As far as being unproductive, I completely disagree. You're keeping your house running. You're keeping yourself running. Both incredibly important.

    I know plenty of people who don't work and don't have kids, but are complete deadbeats. You are not among their ranks. You are an artist and a mother and a grieving woman--consider this your healing time.

    How sweet to have a lunch date every day :)

  3. This post describes exactly how I feel. I'm not working, I can't bring myself to work, I'm just at home doing the best I can each day. For me it's refreshing to read about another mama whose routine is close to mine.

  4. Your art is incredible and I (selfishly) love that you have time during the day to pursue it. Your day sounds beautiful and calm. xo

  5. I think your days sound great and you shouldn't feel ashamed or whatever for not having an actual 'job'. Thinking of you. XO

  6. I think your day sounds amazing and you're right it's ultimately about what works for you and L. You're an incredible person and I'm so thankful to have you as a friend:)

  7. You've got so much love (and art) to have and be had, I am so glad you don't have to give your mind the dulling tasks of a job. You're doing beautiful.

  8. I feel the same tension about not working, but most of it comes from my father, which I understand. He paid for my college degree, and on the surface it looks like I'm not using it. But--he's not me or us and has no perspective about what the last year and a half has been like.

    Your day sounds perfect to me.

  9. You are contributing to your family and that is what is most important in life, in my eyes. You are also contributing to my well being so what is better than that?! ;)


  10. This is exactly what I did. I never went back to work after I had Hope and I constantly felt like I was justifying myself. It drove me crazy but also made me feel like a horrible, worthless shit.
    I planned on taking 12 months off to care for Hope. But she died. So I took the time off instead to care for myself. After my 12 months was up, I was heavily pregnant again and my work wouldn't give me any more time off, so I had to quit. Now I have Angus at home and I want to take at least 12 months off to care for him. That time is almost up now, and you know what, I think I might stay off work even longer but just do the odd day of work from home here and there. We have been to hell and some days I'm not sure I'm even fully back. We just have to do what works for us and our family.
    You are doing exactly that.

  11. i'm the same rachel, i stopped work a month before harvey was born and planned on going back after a year. then it became apparent that i didn't have much time with harvey so i stayed off work longer. i tried to go back a few months ago but my job isn't there anymore. now i'm nearly 7 months pregnant and hardly employable in the conventional sense. career just isn't important to me anymore like it used to be. i'm building up to doing architectural work from home with the odd bit of data entry to fill in the gaps.
    don't beat yourself up over not working, its been the toughest year of your life, its not going to be like this forever and i too love the fact that you have done and shown us so much art this year. you are definitely contributing to my life in a very positive way xxx

  12. to me it seems that you 'do' a heck of a lot. in your situation, grieving, surviving, making it through the days, coping and healing are all together a full time job.

    I hate the way society measures our worth by what we 'do'. to me it should be about who we are, what we 'be'.
    I see you 'be'ing something pretty awesome. You keep going through all of the pain and stress (a huge job in itself) and you *still* run errands, tidy, make food to eat, do laundry, take care of Dinah, create art, blog, reach out to others etc etc!!!
    I know that you have made my day a number of times by commenting on my blog and that tells me that you are a caring person who reaches outside of yourself to support others even when you are in pain. That is a very special person :-)

  13. Love this - thanks for sharing!

    As others have commented, I too struggle with being unemployed, but know it's the best choice for me. I feel very fortunate to be able to choose this - and have time for myself and my growing baby. Chances are I won't find any work before this baby comes... we'll see. I'm becoming more OK with that, but have my times of feeling guilty or ashamed when people ask me what I do. Or feeling like I should help out financially instead of leaving it all up to my husband. Fortunately he's completely supportive. :)