The ‘work-at-home momming’ category

Work-at-Home Momming

July 13th, 2018

work-at-home momming

It’s 3:18 on a Wednesday and my daughter is on my bed yell-singing Row Row Row Your Boat with her binkie in her mouth after promising me that she would be very quiet if I allowed her to stay in my room. I am trying to write a blog post about Facebook ad retargeting for one of my favorite and most important clients. Downstairs, my nanny is getting paid the twin rate to watch just one of my kids, who is barely agreeing to it, and only for now.

My kids have always been extremely clingy.

Call it separation anxiety, call it shyness, it’s pretty intense. Were I a stay-at-home mom, I’m pretty sure I’d spend hours of every day sitting immobile under two territorial toddlers.

But as much as I would love to lie about all day with two very clingy three-and-a-half-year olds who are in the 90th percentile of weight in my lap, I have to work. And unfortunately for everyone involved, I work at home. This is an exquisite kind of torture for all of us.

For my kids, they have a mom who is nearby, but unavailable. And to make matters worse, I am inconsistent about this. When I need a break from work, suddenly I’m right there, wanting to engage. (I know this is a problem; I’m working on it.)

For my husband, same thing, plus, there’s an illusion that I’m available to help out. And sometimes I am. But other times, when I’m stressed about work or really trying to concentrate, I will snap his head off if he so much as inquires where the dog’s leash is.

For me, the challenge of concentrating is extreme. And I have a job where I really must concentrate.

 

It is for these reasons that I have finally succumbed to working at a coworking space a few days a week.

You might be wondering why I did not do this a long time ago. You forget that I live in a small town in rural Southern Vermont — one which has a wonderful co-op, a record store, three actual bookstores, an art-supply store, and the world’s very best farmers market, but no box stores and only like, one eye doctor who, unfortunately, is not accepting new patients right now.

But a few weeks ago, when I reached one of my periodic breaking points with trying to concentrate at home, I googled “coworking spaces” again, and lo and behold, one had sprung up right on Main Street in Brattleboro. I secured a “floater” spot where I am able to drop in any time I want, for a pretty low monthly fee.

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Now for the hard part: working in an office.

The pros

There are not screaming toddlers vying for my attention while I try to write complicated technology prose.

I am able to escape my Emily Dickinson bedroom/office a few days a week and be among the land of the living.

Cold-brew coffee from Mocha Joes and the opportunity to go out to lunch in town with various people I’ve been trying to catch up with forever.

The cons

I am super shitty at working in an office. I always have been. Part of my daily “writing process” is escaping to my kitchen to make meals and beverages quite frequently. If I work in an office, I have to either bring a ton of stuff with me, which takes a lot of prep time, or go out constantly for supplies.

The first day I worked at my coworking space, I brought 2 beverages and went out for 2. I also got takeout for lunch and was still so woozy and low blood sugar by 4 that I had to cash it in, skip the yoga class I had been dreaming about, and go straight to the coop.

The second day I worked at my coworking space, I brought 4 ball jars containing homemade granola, macadamia nut mylk, roasted rosemary almonds, and water with mint sprigs. Then I went out for a two-hour lunch with an old friend and didn’t take one sip of the water all day, electing instead to chug it in the car on the way home.

Still working out the kinks.

One thing I love about coworking is coming home to my daughters at the end of the day. They drive me berzerk when I’m home trying to be productive. When I don’t see them all day, I miss them like crazy.

 

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