My legs stretched out in front of me,. I had a cold drink and of course, my notebooks and files and pens and laptop. Summertime magic happens for my kids courtesy of my mobile hotspot and my ability to work in the harshest of conditions. This is how it has always been in my motherhood. I've worked through it all; mixing stay at home mom time with working time. My children know I work. They also know they have to share me with work--who is, in many ways, their very demanding, unpredictable sibling who comes with a bank account and deadlines.
I have mixed feelings sometimes about responding to their demands or drama with shrieks and shouts of "I have to work" alternating with loud whispers "stop fighting! I am on a call!" Will my kids think they are less important than work? Is this why sometimes I cannot get their attention even though I've said their names 100 times? Will they grow up starved for attention? Or will they figure out that they don't always need attention? Will they have a healthy sense of how their magical lives are funded? Or will they simply grow up thinking they, too, have to juggle everything poolside? Or will they grow up knowing they can make the choices that fit their hearts?
This choice to work in a way that is not traditional was a heart choice for me. I knew before marriage and kids that my ideal work life would never be found in an office; but it would be found writing at odd hours. When Lily was born and then when she got sick, I was so thankful I had already set that life in motion. I worked and took my toddlers to morning playdates. I conference called during nap times. I rescheduled and declined one-on-ones that were during pediatrician appointments.
Note: none of these choices rocketed me to the top of my field; because while I would sacrifice nap time "me-time" for work; I'd never sacrifice an afternoon in the splash pool with my little ones.
I do enjoy my summer work hours--meetings in the mornings; poolside by the afternoon with a transcript from an interview in hand and time to daydream about stories and writing. Just a few more weeks and then, it is time.