11/5/08

Pining for work

Much as I have enjoyed watching QQ rebound with such renewed joy and vigor from her surgery, I have to admit that the past weeks have been wearing. We are all tired, and with little relief...M. from work and me from the new level of motherhood that QQ requires. It isn't always easy to maintain a sane balance in life with a toddler in the house. We have chosen not to use daycare...it was a deliberate choice, but it has meant sacrificing some (or, sometimes, any) personal time. QQ's needs since her surgery have meant that I have been focused on her 100% of the time, and it's been my work that has gone by the wayside. A couple of days ago, it finally hit me...and hard.
I longed to work.
I needed to work.
My brain felt like it might actually explode if I didn't work.
This "breaking point", unfortunately, coincided exactly with the election, and M's week of mid-terms, so there was really no recourse.
Two days of getting up at 3am have taken a toll on M, and since daylight savings has set QQ's timeclock back (and she has yet to return to her former schedule of daily naps) she and I are also a bit ragged.
Today, once the election coverage was over, M rewarded me with a few hours of drawing time. Not enough to start on the wait-list of portraits that I have tacked to the wall (those will have to wait until QQ is regulated a bit better, and we are able to return to a routine and hire a babysitter again) but enough time to play around a little.
I've been wanting to experiment with a bit more fanciful and abstract style of children's illustration, and I thought this was a good opportunity to do so. I hope that a few of my bloggy friends don't mind that I used their kiddos as models for my experimentation ;)........

Maryellen's daughter Sophie...

Maia R's daughter FF...

Juliette's daughter Maelle....

And Chrissie's daughter Isacah.

Ahhhhhhhh.......I feel much better. Now if only I can carve out a bit of time to do this every day...is that just a pipe dream at this point?

22 comments:

A Beautiful Mess said...

Finding time for yourself.....one of the biggest challenges of motherhood.

Let me know what you figure out...I could use some tips:)

Lovely illustrations!

Juliette said...

I don't mind at all Maia, this is just lovely!!
I am glad you could find some time for yourself and do what you love most (after taking beautiful pictures of you and your princess, they were so precious...).

Yoli said...

Maia they are lovely! I am glad you got some time to yourself. I know how passionate you are about your art. It is hard to be off work. I have done it for almost a year now and it is not easy. It has certainly been an adjustment. Hopefully when QQ gets better, you will find the time to work again, if only maybe part time.

Maia said...

Eeek! Oh my! How wonderful and unexpected to see FF up there! Thank you! It's beautiful!

On the work front - today I was heading into town for groceries, baby on one arm, purse on the other, boy back in the house sick with the flu, and I stood in the door of my husband's studio, where it was warm and clean and quiet and he was burning a candle and listening to all the post-election news on NPR while he worked - - and I thought I would die of jealousy. Sometimes I can't wait to have that uninterrupted time to again. I know I'm lucky to be able to stay at home with my kids. I know that I gain so much from being with them... but... yeah... I miss a steady working life.

A Beautiful Mess said...

Thanks Maia:)

You captured my sleeping beauty perfectly

MotherMotherOcean said...

The pictures look grand.

Heidi said...

Oooooo, they're yummy! :)

Vivian M said...

Maia, I totally understand - all of it. I quit a very long professional career to abruptly become a SAHM and tend to Kerri and all her emotional needs, as we experienced the gamut of attachment disorders and physical ailments. We are still working on it, and I crave alone time, going back to work, speaking with an adult! But it does get a bit easier, and as QQ heals and grows, you will be able to make some time for yourself. Just remember to prioritize what's important for you. For me, that meant not worrying so much what my house looked like and spending time on the things that mattered more to me (thank goodness for the cleaning ladies!). Take advantage of her nap times, (in my case early or late hours once Kerri is sleeping is MY time). As Moms, we tend to eventually put everyone and everything else first - don't fall into that! And once she starts school you will have a few more hours.
By the way, it goes without saying that your drawings are just lovely!

Michele said...

I'm suredoign a little "work" felt so relaxing. I certainly understand the need to work.

The drawings are terrific. I can't wait to see more.

Barbara said...

Staying home with kids is SO much harder than going to work!! At work, I can pee when I want & with the door closed!, eat lunch with no responsibilities for 1/2 hr, & can actually sit. Even though I have 350 kids at school, I also have other adults to chat with. Staying home during the summer with my kids is BLISSFUL but exhausting. You're doing some good, hard work Maia!

kerri said...

I love!!!!!! these drawings!!!!
So glad you found time for your passion, it renews us, this is so important for us as parents.

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

I just love, love, love the way you draw... hope you don't stop taking photos until I get my Shauna... I need one - no wait... I want one of those drawings done of her... hehehe... glad Flynn is doing so well and if you ask me, you are doing fine with motherhood...

Stacie said...

i love, love your work!!!!!

I am JUST now starting to get some time to myself- taking runs alone....snippets here and there where she will play by herself just until she realizes she is playing by herself. It can make me feel crazy at times. I think you are smart to make it happen early on and set a precedence for it. I thought it would happen naturally as she was ready but.....

You Know Where You Are With said...

I LOVE these drawings. Just lovely!

I stayed home with Lulu for 14 months, and then she started morning preschool in June. That year or so was really, really hard on me, not being able to work, as I identified myself that way, in that role. I used to exclaim to R., "but you can just walk out of a room!..." and my voice would trail off in envy at that very small thing that is so taken-for-granted by anyone not parenting a toddler.

It's much easier now to find my personal sense of equilibrium, with my mornings free, although I suspect it will never again be the freewheeling work experience (whenever, wherever) that I used to have. And that's okay.

Rebecca of "China, Baby!" said...

Beautiful work, Maia! Feel free to sketch my kiddos anytime. :)

I so understand that need for a creative outlet. I cannot thrive without one!

xoxo

Lost and Found said...

Fabulous! I need to get my name on that list. It's tough having a babe recovering from surgery but this special time will be yours forever and will foster that bond already established. I know how hard it is to need to go back to work and I had to leave my girl. Hopefully as QQ recovers and grows you can find a good balance of both.

Cavatica said...

I understand this so well. I need to work.

The drawings are wonderful. You should do a book someday with illustrations of all the bloggy kids. It would be sweet.

Heather said...

I know what you mean. As hard as it is to fit in work and motherhood, it's worth it. I hope you can find that balance once QQ has her surgery well behind her. I love the illustrations.

Stefanie said...

My goodness, those are so lovely! Purely magical, Maia :)

Chrissie Larkin said...

o my goodness i love it! i mean reallyyyy love it!that is one of my favorite picturs too...it is wonderful!!!!!thank you!

My Heart Beats In China said...

Maia,
I just have to say, when I see your drawings, they make me cry. I can't believe my silly song did that to you! But you can scroll down and change it to some rock and roll if you want:))

I'll agree with you. I too miss work, even though I couldn't wait to stop working 12 hours in lead vest/skirt. ugh my feet and back ached. But lately I too miss the only thing that I knew how to do for 30 some odd years. It's normal. You'll find there will be plenty of time for both. I promise! What you are feeling I went through. It's as if I read my story through yours.

Enjoy the time with QQ and take time for you too!

Love the photos of her with her pants sagging, New Look? LOL

Your beauty is precious! Just like her Mama!

Love,

Ivy

Margaret Miracle said...

These are stunning!