As I wrote this, I was heading to Idaho to hang out with ten other novelists for three days to plot and pray. I was looking forward to three full days to connect with friends. And (I will admit) three full days without having to change diapers, do time-outs, or pick up piles of toys.
I love being a mom of six—don’t get me wrong—but it’s exhausting work! There are days when I wish I had the house to myself to sleep in, take a long bath, read, and write. Of course, then I think . . . what would I have to write about???
Kids have changed me. They’ve shown me my truest self, for both the positive and the negative. They make my work matter. They’ve deepened me. They’ve shown me how to love deeper and give more.
I’ve also learned how to be patient, watch my tongue, and not become overwhelmed by emotions on days I just want to hide away with a half-gallon of ice cream and have a good cry.
They’re a lot of work, but now that my oldest is twenty-four, I realize how quickly the time goes.
“How do I set my priorities when all things seem equally important and/or urgent? While our children were living at home, their needs came first,” says author Elizabeth Lowell. “After all, they didn’t ask to be born. We asked for them. For me, that meant writing part-time around the kids’ schedules.”
Your priority may not be writing, but I’m sure there are those things in you life that make you think, “I wish I could have more time to do this, that, and the other thing. “
Hopefully, I’ll be writing for the next forty years. And over that time period you’ll have time for some of your work and interests, too.
So enjoy that important time you spend doing the work you love . . . but enjoy your kids more.
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