Interests Writers

On Being Responsible

Y’all, the only time I **used** to wear my glasses was for needlework. And the last time I did that was for Lady Liberty on January 28, 2017. Isn’t she beautiful? I love her so. She’s up on my wall now.  But #PitchWars broke my eyes. So here I am typing, revising, editing, rewriting and channeling my inner Felicity Smoak.

Yes, this is me exactly right now.

Actually, this is me exactly right now. It’s more than my eyes that are feeling the #PitchWars strain. And that reminded me of a story.

Once upon a time, I was mommy to just one little baby. Hubs, baby, and I lived far, far away from any family. Our house looked like this:

Our home was in a small town in the Deep South. We did tornadoes; we did home-grown tomatoes. We did hurricanes; we did mowing the lawn. We did snowstorms; we did ice storms; we did splash-pads. We did thunder and lightning; we did heat advisories;  we did alligators. We did power outages for days; we did sunrooms. We did flash floods; we did ruffle pants. We did a lot. The Deep South is an adventure, y’all. And it was our home.

But being new parents three airports away from family, is a strain too. And Mr. Amelia and I WERE new parents with all the new parent concerns about sitters, swine flu, and poison ivy. Perhaps that was just my unique list of worries.

We did not get out much, but we had a much loved Netflix account. And we adored our Netflixing. We watched:

And we watched:

And we watched:

Because parking it on the couch together was about all we could handle when our baby was sleeping and we were too exhausted to sleep ourselves–that’s a thing, ask any parent. Baby grew to toddler, and her sleeping became a consistent habit (hallelujah). I often borrowed Mr. Amelia’s laptop while the Netflix was streaming. But when hubs began watching this:

I couldn’t write. I was totally transfixed. And one of the greatest moments of my adult life happened when we stayed up way too late to watching an episode which ended with a teaser for this episode:

The Weeping Angels. The say what now? Don’t blink? But I’ve got to blink.

It was almost 2AM. Hubs turned to me and said “I think we need to do the responsible thing.” Beat. “We need to watch this right now.” I hit play.

Sometimes the responsible choice is staying up all night and watching the cricket match. Sometimes the responsible choice is staying up late and reading Agatha Christie (or Sharon Cameron’s The Forgetting–props to Sharon. The Forgetting was fun).

Sometimes (spoilers: most times) it isn’t. Home-cooked meals, respectable bed times, flossing, exercise, eating only one cookie when you’d rather eat ALL the cookies–this is usually what responsible means.

But life, especially parent life, can’t be all work and no play. Parent-life is a strain–a good strain much of the time–but still a strain. Parents need to unwind. Sometimes they need to eat at their favorite restaurant even if it means their kids will probably have a melt down. They need to go to a big-girl art museum and reconnect with their tribe–even if it might not be the most kid-friendly atmosphere (although in my experience, museum peeps are warm and enthusiastic in their welcoming of little ones).

Pitchwars is a lot of fun. But I am feeling the pinch. It’s a strain–a good strain that is motivating me to chase after some big writing goals. The first half of July has seen lots of writing. Lots of editing. Lots of revisions. But…  sometimes the responsible thing is to take a break, park it on the couch and stay up late with Mr. Amelia watching something fun.

How do y’all unwind?

    2 COMMENTS

  • Ona July 16, 2017 Reply

    Oh, I hear this. I stayed up late last night to finish a book, despite having a toddler, an infant, a messy house and grading to do. But my sanity was on the line.

    • Amelia Hollingsworth July 22, 2017 Reply

      Sanity is important and worth saving. I hope the book was fun. I also hope that your sanity stays intact while y’all travel abroad. So exciting. I can’t wait to hear all about it. Of course after you’ve had a chance to come home and rest.

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