I think this is the third time this year that I’ve lumped two gratefuls into one. And not because I’m doubly grateful but because I simply couldn’t find the time to write. No. That’s an excuse. One that I wouldn’t accept from my students. We can always find the time for what’s important to us. And therein started an internal conversation that is resulting in some pretty drastic changes.
Blogging is important. I like the ritual. I like the regularity. I like sharing where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing. It’s my way of keeping in touch with various people around the world who are a big part of my life; friends who have all contributed in some way to making me who I am. It’s also by way of a record for me because my memory is getting worse and it’s getting harder to keep track of things. The travel pieces, too, they’re morphing into a whole new project that should be interesting – more details later.
So, were I to practice as I preached, I could have found the time. I could have shaved a couple of hours off my already meagre 6 hours of sleep a night but as I need 8 hours of regular sleep to keep the nice button in on mode, this would’ve been dangerous. I’m already cranky, short-tempered, and low on tolerance. I could have cancelled any one of four trips I’ve taken in as many weeks – Slovenia, Croatia, Ireland, Austria – but then I might have missed out on something. I could have postponed my visitors and asked them not to come but then I wouldn’t have had the pleasure of their company (whether they took pleasure in mine is another conversation entirely 🙂 )
I’ve banged on before about freelancing and those of you who are or have been in that line of work know that memories of the most recent famine push you to take on far too much in times of feast. But I’ve had to take a long, hard, look at my workload, and weigh up my rate of return on investment of my time. I could, I suppose, stop doing the free stuff, the work I can’t bring myself to charge for. I could stop offering token rates for those I know don’t have the wherewithal to pay the full price. I could stop. Full stop.
So in addition to working, travelling, and hosting, I’ve been making changes. And yes, I’m feeling a tad anxious that I’m making the wrong decisions, culling the wrong clients, and prioritising the wrong parts of my life, but someone needs to make the call. All going well, life will return to what passes for normal around the 10th of November. Until then, I can live with the madness and the mania, and be grateful that I get to pick and choose and make choices, something I’m often in danger of taking for granted.