There is something really wonderful about the limbo of being jobless. And that is vast amounts of Golden Time.
For the last fourteen years I have been a mother.
And being a mother means not having very much time to oneself.
This doesn’t mean that I resent my daughter or regret being a mother; anybody who knows me and Bella, knows that we are close. I love being a mother and it is definitely one of the things I was born to do.
But I am stating a truth: when you are a mother, you get very little time to yourself.
When you are a single mother, you get even less.
And there are some things that I do – like writing and thinking – that I do better when I am alone. By “alone” I mean alone in thought – without responsibility to interact meaningfully with people around me. I can be easily be alone in a busy cafe – as I often was when I lived in Montreal and Reims – I liked to be deep in thought, reading or writing, shutting out all the floating conversation around me.
But today I’m a mother and a wife, and so, being alone usually means being the only person in the house.
After Bella was born, I developed a simple hierarchy of time. While a more detailed system has always been appealing, in reality I just have Golden Time and… Everything Else. (Can you see here that it could be useful to have “Silver Time” or Bronze Time”?)
Golden Time is a big chunk of protected time, when I can crank down hard and focus on a project that needs lots of brain power.
Golden Time is usually at least two hours. It can be smaller, but being smaller drastically reduces its chances of value.
Golden Time should never be wasted on cleaning the house and/or cooking, as both activities require very little brain power and are best accomplished in social settings.
Golden Time may be used very sparingly for naps and phone calls to my sister.
Golden Time is most frequently used for writing and blogging. There are many other things that should be done during Golden Time, but these things are often neglected, simply because there is never enough Golden Time. Things like deciding what I want to be when I grow up, reassessing life priorities, brainstorming, and dreaming.
And now, Bella goes to school every day. Chad goes to work. And I don’t have a job.
I am home alone for four to six hours a day. That is TONS of Golden Time. What can I make of myself with all this time? What kind of new job can I fashion or find? What would womantalk.org look like if I started treating it like a job and poured more brain juice on it? Could I be a pro-blogger?