This morning was a time of peace for me, as it seems all the first day home after a trip mornings are.  We visited with family this weekend.  John’s Granny saw Ivy for the second time ever.  I saw my sister and best friend and spent the afternoon and evening watching movies and talking with her.  It was nice.

So, I woke up this morning before everyone else.  I tended to our new flock of chickens, hoed our carrots, went to the watering hole for the week’s water.  Though it may not sound like it, I eased into my day.  I felt fresh, alive and rested.

This is significant for me right now because I’m at a transitioning point in my year, my mothering, my work, and my life.  My health has become shoddy.  The thyroid issues that have plagued my family are starting to creep in on me.  I had to have blood tests done last week to check on all my levels, and to try to get to the bottom of why I can’t rest, why my hair is falling out by the handfuls, and why I feel so anxious.  I have a myriad of other symptoms that point to the thyroid issues as well.  Those symptoms have become something I am no longer able to ignore, but what just plain sucks about it is John and I have no insurance.  It’s part of the sacrifice you make when choosing the arts as your career, and yes… it is a choice of one over the other.  This means that I don’t have many options when it comes to getting well, and I have to research many things myself to make the decisions on what doctors I should give my money to to get results the fastest.  I spent $300 last week and I still need more testing, but it will have to wait.  So far, my way of eating seems to be all that I thought it was – wonderfully healthy.  My hormone levels on the other hand, are not.

In the meantime, I’m researching my condition and trying to figure out what I can do to treat it naturally.  That is taking more time than I want to devote to it.  That is because I have become serious about my writing.  Over the last year, all of my free time is going toward making writing my career.  It makes me nutty when I have to interrupt that flow.  I’ve become kind of uptight about it.  I want to contribute to our income so that we can have more together time as a family, and maybe one day afford some kind of insurance.  When the girls get school aged, I don’t want to resort to a job that takes me out of the home and makes me less present as a mother and wife.  I am committed to those things first.  I also don’t want to go back to teaching full time.  Writing is what I went to school to do, and it is what I will do come hell or high water.  I’m going to at the very least give it all I can give it and see what happens.

My passion is fiction.  I am working on one novel, and will soon be going on a trip to research another (which I’ll write more about later this week).  Being a mother of small children makes my writing time skewed.  Between my commitments to my novels and this blog, I’m growing more and more uncertain of where my focus needs to go.  Realistically, it is unlikely that I will ever bring in an income from blogging.  I enjoy it thoroughly.  I love having readers and getting comments.  I like writing about our life.  But, it takes time away from my other writing.  I’m trying to figure out at this stage in my life and mothering what I need to be working on most to get the results I’m looking for.  Should I devote the majority my time to fiction, or (as I’ve thought about recently) more time to blogging and the realm of personal essay and/or non-fiction topics of mothering and off-grid living?

Time is the big factor.  With all of my responisbilities as a wife, mother, and homemaker, my home tends to be what I let fall by the wayside, when I devote time to my writing.  I can no longer get up earlier than everyone on most days as I have found that I am overly exhausted from my health issues and lack of sleep.  I’ve not had a full night’s rest in four years.  It is so difficult for me to prioritize because I feel things so immediate.  I am impatient.  I see something I want to do, or might can fix, and I want to do it right away.  I become stressed if I have to wait.

Friday, we’ll begin our first non-work related trip as a family since the girls were born.  Well, I’ll be working, but it’s not the same as sitting in a booth for hours in the heat at art festivals.  We’ll be doing it all together.  I have so needed that time with my family.  I hope it helps us renew ourselves.  I hope it helps me prioritize and recouperate.  I can hardly wait on what is to come.  I feel like good things are on the way and I am wondering what form they will take.  I hope my emotional/mental health (thrown off from all the hormone imbalance) is equipped to let me be fully present.  My mind is swimming in a fog.  I don’t know how I can best prepare for the upcoming trip this week.  Do I work on housecleaning, writing, gardening, researching my health and what I need to do about it, or trying to do all of that?  It can be confusing wearing many hats.

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