There is a common thread in my world of chit-chat at the moment. And it's the responsibilities and pressures that come with being in business for yourself, being an entrepreneur and being mum. How do you cope?
My work days are commonly split between edit days and shoot days. A common 'edit' day for me is…
6am woken up by kids
6.30am-8.30am Drag myself out of bed, make breakfast for the kids, myself, make lunches if hubby hasn't, nag the kids about getting dressed/brushing their teeth/doing hair/cleaning face, clean up their mess, nag some more, nag some more, frantically leave the house in time for school and child care drop offs. Often, when I finally fall in the car, I hear myself saying 'right, from now on, there is no TV or play until you are dressed'.
8.30-9.15am Drop kids off at school and day care
9.30-10.15am Squeeze in some form of exercise. At home - driving or prepping myself to be anywhere is too time consuming. Yoga, latin dance, HIIT or a jog are my go-to's.
10.30am After a quick shower, head down to the office and start work. A mountain of emails, training, editing, estimates and proposals, social media, and phone calls fill the day until 2.45pm. I leave the desk, with a stiff back, thinking about what stuff I didn't get done, and what needs to be done tonight.
2.45-8pm Go pick up kids, get after school snack, do homework, make dinner, clean up, eat dinner, clean up, baths/teeth, read books to kids in bed. Give the kids a back rub (yes, they are spoilt from massages overseas and love them). And then, hopefully, they will go to sleep.
8.15pm Make a cup of tea, have a quick chat with hubby and head down to office.
10.30pm After cramming some more work in, hopefully I'll be able to pull myself away from the computer, and can enjoy 10 minutes of reading in bed. Otherwise, it's an 11.30pm (ish) finish, and straight to bed.
Sleep, repeat. Sleep, repeat.
Now, these 'edit' days are easy days. The days when I have shoots that don't work in between school hours or child care days (and let's face it, how often can you solely work in between 9.30-2.30pm) - I then have to organise people to pick up kids, or book into OSCH, or get Grandma to look after them, or hubby to finish work early and pick them up. And the weeks when I work away - then we have a live in Grandma. I am so grateful we have wonderful family around us, to support our life choices of following our passion, and not have the kids in full time care.
When do we do cleaning? Oh, we squeeze that in whenever we can. Excuse us, if the house isn't spotless when you come. We have better things to do than scrub the tiles with a toothbrush on a Saturday night. But only just. Last night, being Saturday, I went to a 40th, bought the kids home for the bedtime routine, did some study while doing my physio exercises, then hung out the washing. Sounds fun, yeah? Ten years ago, my Saturday night routine would have been 'just slightly' different. I'm sure a few of you out there understand.
How about cooking? Well, that has become quite the routine. With our daughter only eating plain, individual food, we make two dinners. One for us, and one for her. We used to eat stir fry, pasta and spicy dishes most nights - now it's meat and three veg, eggs, hash meals (whatever you can find in the fridge, stir fried) and roast chickens (the only meat she will eat apart from sausages, if you can call them a meat). Well, that was until my naturopath put me on a restricted diet of ultra limited intake of lactose, wheat and meat. Yay.
My work days don't run like a business week either. Being a photographer, my 'shoot' days are all over the day - and can be on weekends too. A calendar is essential. And a synced calendar with hubby is an abolute necessary.
Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to have a 'normal' job where I go out three days a week, work my 9-5, then come home. When at home, I can enjoy life and family without having work thoughts running around in my head. Then I remember how much fun I'm having. I wouldn't change it for the world.
Life, at the moment, is like I'm running on a treadmill at speed 10, incline 10. Someimes I stumble, but I keep the momentum. My legs are strong, I will continue. That's what you do when you are passionate - multi passionate.
Cheers to a life of chasing dreams and following your passion!