Sunday, January 30, 2005

On selfishness and a room of one's own

One of the things the NYT article implied, but didn't outright state, was that blogging was a little selfish. It was taking away time from the kids. I've been thinking about this lately, simply because my own extracurricular activities have taken some time away from things I could be doing with the kids. And the home kind of fell apart over the last few weeks. I mean, we were living on pb & j and hot dogs, mostly because I had too much other stuff to do, none of which I really had to do. The world does not need another novel and it won't be the end of the world if I don't finish the book club book. But I was driven, nonetheless. And I feel a little selfish when I take the time to do this. But in a way, I feel entitled. I sacrificed a lot when I had kids--career, money, and mostly time. Now that I feel like I can afford to regain some of that, I feel like I should rather than donate it all back to the kids.

I spent this afternoon at a play date and spent a lot of time talking to the mom--who has five kids, aged 9 mos. to 12. She works one morning a week. She has no time for herself. She's very organized, but she has activities for the kids 4 out 5 days a week and one on Saturday. I really enjoyed talking to her, but I thought, wow, she would never understand my reading and writing habits.

Which brings me to the room of one's own. We have a 4 bedroom house. One bedroom for each kid, one for us, and one is Mr. Geeky's office. My "office" is in the bedroom. It's not bad, except that my desk is too small, I have no bookshelf (instead, there's a closet with shelving and the books share space with the sheets), and there's very little space for filing and computer peripherals. And it's too dark. I was complaining to Mr. Geeky and he made all these suggestions--a new desk, some good lighting, move the sheets. And I said, but it's still in the bedroom. I'm not entirely sure what would make me happy in terms of space, but I think the reality is I would like my own room. Not going to happen any time soon. I've been using the laptop from work on the weekends (blogging in bed at the moment) and I light being able to move from spot to spot. I'm not really fixated on being in one place. I like changing locations to do my work. So maybe the answer is a laptop and a moving desk. I don't know. I just know that I feel cramped in my current space and I don't like working there. I have made a goal for myself to write 15 pages/week in hopes of getting to 200 pages by 5/1. I need the space in order to accomplish this.

So, in order to not feel so selfish, I got off my butt in the late afternoon, went to the grocery store, did all the laundry (including putting it away) and straightened up a little around the desk area. At least I can sail through this week without worrying too much about housework. Now if I can get the work area settled, I'll feel a little less cluttered in both the house and in my mind.