My first Self Portrait Tuesday entry. I've always backed away from this sort of thing, because I'm really not someone who likes ordinarily to draw attention to myself - at least not to the physical aspects of myself. I like to veil myself in a semblance of anonymity and I notice in my blog posts that I hide 'Me' behind my child a lot. At the moment I'm going through a rather blissful loved up family stage - loving my husband, my child, my life as part of a family. So this photo I guess sums up a lot about how I see myself at the moment; A part of something more than just me, and so much more complex than just a head shot. And constantly moving. So in part this also acts as a little bit of a snapped still of a moment of my day - a self documentary.
I thought this might be an appropriate time to answer some questions which I get asked a lot, and which to me are quite serious questions which deserve some explanation. The first is When Do I Find The Time To Do Everything? Let me explain a little about what I actually do in my week, and then some of that will be more relevant. I work 4 days a week as a Senior Design Architect in a large (for Australia) architectural company. I work hard, and my days are long and involved. Friday I have with my boy - and that is the most sacred time of my week. No matter how crotchety I am with him, tired and angry, and willing to give him up for adoption some weeks, I love my days with him. I made a conscious decision when I had a child to not work full-time - that time with Max is something I will never be able to have back with him, and I want him to have a childhood where his parents are an integral component of his memories, his life, and his persona. Weekends are family time. Full stop. At the moment that's really hard and being compromised because my husband, also and architect, is working under enormous pressure and having to work late, and weekends.
Monday through to Thursday, I don't get to craft or knit till late. I start at 9pm, and sometimes don't go to bed till after midnight if I'm on a roll. So maybe I get a couple of hours in each night, or every other night. Friday I don't get anything done unless Max sleeps. We race on Fridays, striving to find a balance between play/max/one on one time, and the things we have to do like grocery shopping, bill paying, and 'Stuff'. Weekends I might get the odd hour, if Max sleeps again, or if my husband takes him off to the park for a little while. So maybe a few more hours. It's not a lot of time when you start adding it up.
So how do I do it? I think about what I'm doing, a lot, before actually doing it. I work quickly, and with organisation. I have every step mapped out in my head before starting, and know exactly what material or wool or pattern I'm going to use. I'm lucky that when I do start something, and it works from the start, I get very motivated and work hard to finish it. If it's not working, I ditch it, without looking back. I don't have time to work on it over and over. It's all just another lot of things I juggle and balance in my life. But even though I'm constantly tired, I wouldn't change the creative energy which gets me through each day, and wouldn't dream of cutting back on time spent doing everything that I do.