I wrote two sentences today. With virtual school starting this week, most of my time has been taken up with trying to get the older two kid’s schedules, technology, and space sorted out whilst still meeting the third’s needs and interests and not neglecting him. You know those moments where everything seems to be chugging along and then suddenly you find yourself with a few spare minutes here and there that you don’t know what to do with? Yeah. Neither do I. But it’s a nice thought. I rarely ever reach those moments because I usually have a whole bunch of things lined up that either need to be taken care of or are things that I want to do (I count lying down on the couch to get caught up on a few minutes of sleep amongst those things that need to be taken care of).
Still, I managed two sentences today, sitting at the dining room table on my iPad while the two older kids were in class and the littles one was still asleep. I’m not going to say they were brilliant sentences but they got written and they weren’t terrible. As I wrote yesterday, I’m chipping away (two sentences by two sentences, just like on the arc) at this fiction project. I’m sure that there’s something to be said here about Virginia Woolf’s idea that a writer needs a “room of one’s own.” In this case, however, a writer-mother requires not just a room of my own but, more importantly, rooms (multiple) for her children.
And so, I’m also trying to clear space so that my kids have designated spots for their virtual learning. This has meant going through boxes and boxes and shelves and shelves of old things, clearing away the unwanted stuff, which, truth be told is most of it. I don’t know why I’ve spent all of these years thinking that I am a person who holds on to the little flotsam and jetsam of life. And I think at some point, I squirreled away things because I felt like hanging on to sentimental items was something I was just supposed to do. There is no good reason that I can think of why I was under this impression, but to be perfectly honest, this week I’m transforming myself into someone who very much enjoys throwing away unnecessary things. I guess it’s true that it does feel like bit of a (much overdue) unburdening of myself. I’ve heard before that when people are at a point of a bit life transition, they will chop off all of their hair. In spite of the fact that mine might nearly begin to brush my lower back, I haven’t been able to get up the energy it would involve to get my hair cut in a pandemic in which my kids still aren’t able to get vaccinated. In short, absent a bold hair cutting life transition statement, there is the purge statement. I’m looking forward to the moment when I can look, full face frontal into the camera, and say, “this house is clean.”