Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ten Secret Strategies for Mothers Who Write: # 4 - Can’t get help with the kids?

I know, I know. You want to write. The kids are home all day, every day. The dear husband trots off to work or you both trot off to work in the morning. Why is it that every evening our children turn into your children? On the weekend you’re lucky if your husband or parents take one child out of the house, even so, they’ll take the oldest one. How can you possibly squeeze writing into the day?

If you’re a stay-at-home mom, one of the reasons you stay at home is because you trust no one else with your children, right? If you’re a working mom, you’ve already given 75% of your take-home pay to the baby-sitter and she doesn’t work evenings and week-ends. Ladies, call in the troops.

Your husband doesn’t always back you up, he can’t. (It’s the whole Y chromosome/ testosterone poisoning thing. We talked about that on secret number three.) There are other people in the world, people who you might not trust to take your child to Disneyland, but could trust in the next room. Neighbor kids, teens with way too much eyeliner, your mother-in-law, call them
Play Let’s Make A Deal with another mom at the pre-school. Find a Mother’s day out in the neighborhood and volunteer a day to get a day to yourself. Bribe your husband with PIE. Bribe your tween with Mp3 downloads. Of course don’t lie, cheat, or steal---but everything up to that point is fair.

Bribe, flatter, trade, barter, pay, pray, and eat your mother-in-law’s bad meatloaf. Do what you need to do to get time to think clearly enough to write. Bring in the troops and lock yourself in the next room. Let someone else get the drinks of water and keep the kids from killing each other. The house won’t get better, but it won’t be worse either.

I can live with that.