Five weeks of Mommy Camp is over. The kids got on the bus this morning headed to camp on Staten Island with their hats and their bug spray and their bathing suits, leaving me bereft of their little bodies and brains, leaving me again to try to figure how to fill my days happily and productively and move, somehow, toward profitability.
I am so grateful we've had this time, albeit some of it spent with them in front of the computer competing against animated enemies. I have seen them swim in lakes and oceans and pools, capture and release little salamanders (Oscar is still missing his little "Sally") and generally enjoy the relaxed pace of summer. I actually felt a little heartsick as they got on the bus, because I would miss them and because it left that void I haven't yet figured exactly how to fill. To be fair, I felt that void strongly, maybe even more so, when I was working full time. So I have to remind myself that it is a far harder mission than just 'getting a job,' as so many close to me have recommended when I have at moments seemed anxious and aimless.
My husband, amazingly, is a convert to this truth and is pushing me that way less than anybody, despite how the influx of cash would help him directly. He is awesomely supportive, often more than I deserve. I try to support him as well, though offering him the opportunity to take the time off to figure things out is not something I can do right now. Maybe someday, maybe sooner than we think, you never know. I haven't started playing the lottery yet, but my stabs at various kinds of writing often feels like a lottery in and of itself, with every potential industry I could sell to dwindling daily and my confidence dwindling along with them.
I have packs of gold stars waiting to give away. I know tons of people need them as they slog through their work this summer when they'd rather be playing, or, like me, contemplate what work would be worth slogging through come the impending fall as I feel too guilty to play. There is a balance, but trying to strike it is so, so hard. I am lucky just to have the time to contemplate.