Solitude and the lack thereof

Solitude. (Focal length 18mm, Shutter: 1/125, Aperture: f13)

The hardest part of having a kid at home sick (or on a PD day), for me, is the lack of time alone. Katherine was feeling rotten this morning and has spent the day curled up either in bed or on the couch. She’s not a demanding patient, which is good because I’m not a fabulously accommodating nurse. In fact, I really go more than a little nuts on these day because I walk around *knowing* that there’s someone else in the house who can make (perfectly reasonable) demands on my time and energy without notice.

So while I certainly have the ability to start things, I do so with the constant understanding that at any given point, I might be interrupted by a need that supersedes any project I might have in-hand, no matter how exciting or important. The overall effect of this is that I don’t dare start anything of real significance; anything that cannot be interrupted or that would suffer therefrom must be left for another day or another time. I also can’t leave the house, go for a run or just get out and clear my head after a teleconference meeting, however badly my head might need hosing.

It’s frustrating and struggling to keep up production work with this overhanging need for sudden flexibility used to drive me batty until a year or two ago, when John and I made a decision. We simply decided that for this time that Katherine was still little, for these few years in which she still wants us around and needs me to play a large role in her life, I’ll be the person who stays home with a sick kid, is there after school and goes in to volunteer for school activities. When she’s a bit older, I can resume my normal course, but these years are short and she won’t want us around for much longer. We planned out family finances and life to allow for this and it works for us.

But it doesn’t make days like today any easier.

Really looking forward to tonight’s run.



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