Sunday, June 26, 2005

A space of one's one

I'm honestly not sure it's possible. So a long, long time ago, I wrote about the need for my own space. Mr. Geeky somewhat obliged me by helping me pick out a new, larger desk. Which allows for more stuff to cover that desk. I was talking to my mom tonight and she was talking about how she just installed a koi pond and how much it feels like her own space and how good it is not to hear the phone or be bothered.

And this is the problem with my "space." It's still in a "common" area. It's in the bedroom. So--and this is going to sound really weird--I don't like working when the "presence" of others is around. I know--sounds very weird. But here's a couple of scenerios that might make some sense. First, I've been trying to write in the mornings (this isn't working very well and maybe you'll see why in a moment). I get up at 6:00-ish, have some coffee and then get started by 6:30, giving me an hour to work. However, all my work is on my computer, which, as I said, is in the bedroom, where Mr. Geeky is still asleep. Now, I'm not at all worried about waking him up. He can sleep through anything--but he's there! And sometimes, if he's awake, he'll interrupt me. Because he doesn't know if I'm working or just surfing/blogging. And then my concentration is blown. And I think I'm thinking about this when he's snoozing away.

And then there's Mr. Geeky's office, where I am now. The office is pretty uninviting and so doesn't attract the wee ones the way my bedroom does and if Mr. Geeky is in here working on something important, he can close the door. Perhaps more importantly, Mr. Geeky does most of his work after everyone goes to bed. No chance of interruption. I just don't have the stamina for that. I can stay up and read for pleasure pretty late, but writing . . . I shut down by 10:00 (and when your kids go to bed at 9:30, that means not a lot of time).

I'm truly frustrated by all of this, because frankly, I feel like I'm getting the shaft. If I really want to do any kind of real work (whether it's writing a memoir or writing papers related to my job) I need a better space, a space I can close myself off from the rest of the world. This wasn't as important when it was just Mr. Geeky, but now that there's the kids and household management is a project, I need some space.

It's bugging me, because I partly think I'm making excuses. But then I know that there have been enough times when I've sat down to write and been interrupted or been unable to concentrate because of the environment that I know that's not entirely true.

In our current living space, there's not really a solution to this problem. When I think about it, I feel like a little kid, who's trying to tie her shoe but can't. She knows it's possible, but it seems so hard. And I get that angry, frustrated feeling little kids get (and then sometimes they throw tantrums). And this is oh, so conducive to writing. I've thought about the front porch, but there are so many kids running in and out of the house that that would be silly. I could close the bedroom door, but this only works during times when the kids are awake and usually doesn't prevent them from wandering in or Mr. Geeky from wander in; it's considered a common area. And relocating to Mr. Geeky's office won't work because he's there; it's his space. I've tried a number of different things--going other places (but I have to borrow a laptop), writing after the kids are in bed (sometimes works briefly--if I'm not overly tired from work), writing in the morning (works at Mr. Geeky's computer, but that feels weird. I don't want him to see my work, yet. And what if he deletes it).

In my earlier post, I said I felt selfish about this and I do. I know lots of people who've managed under worse conditions. But for some reason, this has become a real problem for me. And it's blocking my ability to write. Which would be horrendous if I had to make a living writing. I'm going to make an attempt to clear the desk space and move all the bills and stuff to to old desk. That's the other problem. Everything lands on my desk--bills, school forms, letters to be mailed, random scraps of paper no one knows what to do with. Some of this is my fault. I bring it there, but a lot of times a kid or Mr. Geeky just hands me something. Here's that thing. Not sure what to do with it. Ugh! Enough! I could have built my own space in the amount of time I took to write this post!