Friday, November 7, 2008

SURFACING FOR AIR: Mommyluscious Works At Home

It's been awhile since my last post and like a drug, I've had my withdrawals. But I'm glad to be able to at least take a bit of time to slowly get back into the loop.

I've been working extensively for the past few weeks. Just at home but it doesn't make it any less hard nor does it eat less time. The project I got entailed working on graphics and animation whose complications I sorely underestimated. Plus the fact that I haven't done this much in years. And my equipment lacks the necessary plug-ins to respond as quickly as it should have. AND the schedule and requirements for me to do my job with as little to no problems at all was sadly thrown out of kilter by inconsiderate people.

Of course I shouldn't rant so much given that the production has its inherent problems but professionalism dictates that THAT shouldn't be my problem. I have a schedule, a list of requirements and a deadline. If problems should arise, there should be adjustments and compromises to ensure everyone's happy. It shouldn't be that I'm the peon and I should bend over backward to keep accommodating irresponsible people until my back breaks. And it's damn near broken.

Clients should treat service providers better than they do. The mentality of "the client is always right" really sucks because most people abuse that for all its worth. Being reasonable is always subjective but common human decency shouldn't be pushed aside. Problem is, with this kind of mentality, the abuse couples with "taking as much as I can get because I'm the client and I'm always right." So enter delays, irascible demands and immovable, uncooperative deadlines. Then when you don't deliver, you're told you're unprofessional, the cause of delay and they claim it's only right they don't pay you for your troubles. Or cut your fee. Whateverrrrrr!

This made me seriously reconsider if I should really just quit while I was still sane. After all, I did sign up for SAHM-hood and I don't really like missing Oona's milestones while I'm stuck in front of the computer. On the other hand, finances being seriously tight, I keep grappling with the guilt and restlessness of a former contributor to the family funds.

Was I being merely selfish? Or lazy? Or was I being the one unreasonable? After all, work is work, isn't it?

I seriously didn't know I would be thinking about all this when I decided to accept being a SAHM. I also thought there was little difference between a Stay At Home Mother and a Work at Home Mother so I thought the cross-over would be easy. Yeah, NOW I know!

Schedules and routines are much tighter at home, especially since your own movements are structured around the little girl's timetable. She's the ultimate boss. Not me, not RF, not anybody. It's not that she's bossy, demanding or being a brat, but it really is how it goes down with a baby.

When I said I'll take on jobs I can do at home, I thought I considered it enough. Apparently it needs more thought. As my esrtwhile hubby said, working at home isn't a problem nor are my skills. Talent, honed by skill can be polished to full function given a little time so I shouldn't worry about having lost my edge due to inactivity and younger hotshots out there. What I should focus on would be professionalizing my services and sticking to my guns. He says since my time is in the little girl's hands, I can't give it away to people, things and concerns that are infinitely less meaningful than our Major Project: Oona.

I'm glad I married a very supportive and understanding man. When I'm going neurotic and wringing my hands like the worry wart I always become, he'd always try to make me laugh first then think second. Sometimes (okay, most of the time) it pisses me off because my neurosis makes me feel like he's trivializing my concerns then telling me what to do. Later on though, but grudgingly, I'd have to admit he's right on the money.

The world won't change overnight, least of all for me, but what I can do is make sure I'm not forced to sacrifice the things I quit the fast lane for: my ethics, my love for all things art and most importantly, my little growing family. It may sound demanding to others out there that I won't bend my rules, after all, I'm one of the little people and they hold the moolah. I'm merely prioritizing my life. They're not the one raising my little girl and they won't even remember who the heck I am in a month or even less. But my Oona and my RF would feel the vacuum Mom's absence or lack of time for them would create. I don't want to reason later on that I'm doing this for Oona's own good. While it stands to reason, it doesn't comfort me to make that compromise. I'd rather compromise on the side of my family, my core principle.

I decided to be a mother and wife first before committing to being an artist and business person second. So I should stick to it. No exceptions.

So watch out world, this mom's back in business with a vengeance! But always on time for the little girl's play time, feeding time, bath time, sleepy time...

Lilypie Breastfeeding Ticker


Ree said...

hey laya. i so agree with you on priorities. i'm actually just finishing committed projects this year, and next year it's fulltime SAHM-hood for me. knowing your priorities doesn't make the decision any easier though, when it comes to dividing your time and effort. so god bless us both :)