When life gets put on hold

Last week, Maura got sick. Maura, being the kind child that she is, shared some of her germs with me. Okay, so maybe it was my own fault because the afternoon before she sprouted her 102 temperature, I asked for a bite of her cookie and she actually complied.

So there we were, the pair of us, each on a sofa, each with a blanket. I even made us almost matching cups of tea with honey (some whiskey fell into mine, for medicinal purposes.) I did manage to keep “social” via Facebook and blog and phone. But there was also times where we just laid together, watching tv, Maura curled into my side, my laptop on the floor, my phone on mute. Because sometimes, the world just needs to stop.

Meanwhile, collecting dust, is the novel I’ve been working on. As in, I completed one draft, had a friend read it, she gave me seriously awesome notes, I sat on it for a few months, finally realized how to fill in the plot holes, have been slowly revising while madly scribbling notes down and protecting those notepads from Maura, the stationary thief, and eking away at it. I had a “try to finish revision by” date in mind. Which is nearly here. I had plans on really working on it last week.

I didn’t even touch it.

This seems to be the story of my writing life. Spurts of time where I get into a groove, write, get stuff done, then life happens and put all of it aside. Part of it is the nature of motherhood – you’re sort of told by society that good mothers always put their children’s needs first. Good mothers sacrifice their time for their children. Good moms have clean homes and make dinner. Good moms make sure you not only have clean socks, but match them up into neat little pairs.

Needless to say, I’m kinda a crap mom by society’s standards. Then again, matched socks are overrated.

It does seem like time stands still when Maura gets sick. I go into hover mode, never straying to far from her side, checking up on her until I know exactly what she has and when she’s turned the corner for the better. Maura can’t always tell me what’s wrong, so I have to guess and interpret and pray that it’s not a stomach virus. She always wants to snuggle when sick, so I end up next to her a lot, watching cartoons or “Frozen” or whatever makes her happy. Even if it means a twelve hour SpongeBob marathon and my brain matter oozing out one ear.

Throw it a few germs and feeling generally cruddy myself and forget ever having any aspirations of doing something that requires thought.

Maura went back to school today, with a cough and runny nose, but she hasn’t been feverish since Friday and she was happy to see the bus. Now I just have to get myself back into the writing seat and keep revising, even though I know at this point I’m not going to make that personal goal I set for myself. And despite my house being a bit of a mess (okay, a lot of a mess) and so many other things needing done. I’ve put in the good mother hours where they counted the most. It’s okay if I take some time to do something non-parental related, right?

J.K. is my writing patronus.
J.K. is my writing patronus.