Many of you may have visited earlier in the week to my review site and checked out my thoughts about Tara Thompson’s new release Meltdown. Well, today I’ve invited Tara here to share a few more thoughts. Here’s Tara on motherhood and writing…
I may not be the most maternal person in the world, but I love babies. I love their smell, I love their tiny little fingers and toes, and I love their complete dependence and purity. So… I had three children in four years. I honestly though we would have a fourth too, until it dawned on me that my babies wouldn’t stay that way forever. Once those first few years were over, I’d be taking them to dance, soccer, football, and tennis. There would be recitals and playoffs, travel teams and slumber parties. SAT’s, driver’s permits, and college tuition. Times three.
With my littlest one still in his infant carrier, I clearly remember thinking- Oh my God, what have I done?
But in the meantime, my days were a blur of early morning wake-ups, leaking (and sometimes exploding) diapers, mealtimes that lasted forever because most of it wound up on the floor, naps that never seemed to happen concurrently, temper tantrums, potty training, baths where I got as wet as my children and exhausting night time feedings.
It was often hard to write a grocery list, let alone a chapter. And since I wasn’t actually paid to write, I felt guilty spending money on babysitters just so I could play with the imaginary friends I created in my computer. But one day, my fingers literally itching to get to the keyboard, I threw my laptop in a bag, put the kids in the car and headed to my gym. A few minutes later, they were happily playing in the babysitting area while I tapped away in a chair by the front desk.
Yes- I do know that the gym is a place for working out. And on occasion I actually do that. But to all moms who just want a break without actually breaking a sweat- consider heading to you local gym. Babysitting is either free as part of your membership, or available for a nominal charge. Do I always feel better after working out? Absolutely. But there have been many days when what I really needed was my own personal “time-out.” At least half of Meltdown was written at my local gym and if I didn’t feel like writing, I could read a magazine, surf Facebook or even put together a jigsaw puzzle on my iPad in relative peace. Meanwhile, my children were playing with other kids their age, in a neutral, child-centered environment.
As a mom of young children, sometimes all I needed was an hour or two free of whining, crying and spit-up to feel as if I’d conquered the day. Whether I found it on the treadmill or in the sitting area of my gym, it didn’t matter.
Thankfully, I’ve made it to the day when all three are in full-day school and over the past few years I’ve traded bottles, bibs and diapers for shin guards, bike helmets and muddy cleats. Laptop computers and cell phone probably aren’t too far away. I no longer have to choose between working out, writing or just catching my breath for a few minutes. Most days I even have time for all three.
So to all stay-at-home moms who want to pursue a passion beyond child-rearing and don’t have a regular babysitter- look for other resources out there to give you that little bit of sanity during the relentless twenty-four hour, three hundred sixty-five day cycle that is parenthood. Sometimes you will find it in the most unexpected of places.
Thanks for stopping by again, Tara. Always a pleasure to have you. And for those of you who missed the review…here’s the link. Be sure to check out Meltdown.
And don’t forget to check out Tara as she tours the www promoting Meltdown. All the deets can be found at http://www.clpblogtours.com/2013/04/meltdown-by-tara-thompson.html