One of the biggest challenges of transitioning from stay-at-home mom to full-time-working-mom has been carving out time for errands, time for exercise, and the element I yearn for most: time for creativity. Which, for me, means quiet time. Alone.
I decided to experiment this week by scheduling a work day on Saturday and taking a flex day today. I had a hair appointment at 9 AM – grooming! a first step in starting to figure out this work-life balance thing – and made a long list of errands I’m rarely able to get to anymore during the week: bank, post office, library, kids’ school.
When I saw that the day’s photography challenge was Solitude, I grabbed my camera and added “photos” to my list.
I was inspired by my photo-genius coworker, Jen Hooks, who blogs at lightcandy: she is not pulling photos from her archives for the Photography 101 course many of us are taking. She is aiming to get behind her lens every day and shoot new work. And with a day off, I wanted to do the same.
The first thing I thought of on this cold, misty November day, when I had the day all to myself, was the cemetery. Is that weird? It called to me with its emptiness, and its silence. Though my days have no noise, my mind feels loud. I feel like I’m rushing all the time – rushing to get the kids’ lunch boxes packed, rushing to throw the dishes in the dishwasher, rushing to get the kids to sports, rushing to take my shower, rushing to “get to work” (down in my basement office).
There’s no rush at the cemetery. It is quiet. It is peaceful. It is slow-paced.
It was exactly the stillness, and the solitude, I needed.