This is post number 30 of my self-promised “30 stories for 30 days” project. It feels great to have seen this project to its completion. What was it all for though? Well, it was the midnight child of a hyper active brain. No, it wasn’t my son; it was me! I had recently let my full-time maid go and my MIL had come and gone. I was alone with baby during the days except for the time I was taking him to play school for a couple of hours. I was starting to itch. It had been almost a year since we moved here and life had switched diametrically. People were visiting us or we were visiting people, doing all the things that needed to be done. Suddenly there were no more trips or visits coming up and there was nothing for me to do. Quite literally. I didn’t know one day from the next except for the food that we ate. I was ready to go to work. Any work.
I wasn’t working in the Bay Area either, but I was doing a lot. I was reading and writing, cooking and baking and working on the productions of a Bay Area theater company called Naatak. My days were full. I even went through a phase when I was teaching myself sewing! I was a sentient being. Even after the baby was born and when he was younger I got to do some things for myself because he didn’t need that much attention. But now that he’s become older and more aware, he constantly looks for me. It’s a double edged sword this; you may feel like you hate the fact that your baby constantly hangs onto you. But it’s also hugely gratifying to be loved so unconditionally. It’s very easy to get used to being his entire world. He becomes yours.
This thought struck me one day when I was feeling low and thought, “I don’t feel like myself these days.” Pat came the reply from my head, “But, who are you?” I was shocked. I didn’t even know who I was anymore! If someone else had told me this, I would have been terribly upset and angry. But my head was acknowledging this and so there was nothing else to do but for my heart to follow. I needed to stay the person I was and not become the baby’s mother. I want mother to be on my resume as one of my qualifications, not my only qualification. I was ready to work.
It’s been very hard getting the baby adjusted in day care though. He is either too young or too stubborn to stay there without me. I can’t even find a day babysitter for him so I can work from home. The only time I get for myself is late at night after the hubby (he is a early to bed and early to rise kind of person) and baby go off to sleep. I am a night owl. But what work can you do at midnight unless it involves talking to people in the US? I didn’t want to wait anymore and that’s why I started this project.
I have another anonymous blog, that I like to call my “bitch blog”. I write there mostly when there is something bothering me and I really don’t want people to know about it. It’s sort of a way to process my thoughts and I don’t care if anyone reads it or not. This time I wanted something more regimented, like a writing portfolio that I wanted people to read. I wanted to be accountable, I wanted to be regular, I wanted to put myself out there like in the workplace and face the music. The theme of food came to me because I was reading my recipe file before bed and I thought what other passion do I have right now? I started thinking of all the stories that were hidden in those recipes, all the beautiful memories and decided that I wanted to share them. I started writing slow, a few hundred words a day, just something to get the ball rolling. But now I feel like I am writing an essay a day! It doesn’t matter how late it gets. My bed time has gone from 12 to 1 to 2 to 3am. And I am thrilled that I’ve kept at it. I am sure I will continue to post as long as the stories flow. If they stop I will skip a day or two until I find a story.
It’s not been easy for many reasons, but exhaustion is not one of them. I find that even when I am sleep deprived I have more energy than before. It’s adrenaline I suppose and I now understand how the baby feels! This whole world is an exciting place for him so how can he go to sleep and miss the action? There are so many words to write, how can I not?