I have to tell you that it's a really humbling experience to come to terms with the fact that one simply cannot do it all; I've finally caved in and hired a nanny twice a week. While I've managed to limp along for the past year without any assistance other than that generously volunteered by family, a few weeks ago I finally reached my limit. I need help. I really did think that it would be possible for me to juggle being a Momma, a wife, and a working writer with occasional help from family, but it's not. Much as I would like to be some sort of super human who doesn't need sleep or any time to herself, I haven't been able to locate a scientist willing to turn me into such, and as a result I'm stressed out, exhausted and in over my head.
Look, I'm incredibly grateful to be able to work from home (and to even have work in the first place) but if any of you are under the impression that working from home while also trying to take care of a toddler is a piece of cake, let me assure you it is a total freaking nightmare. I know some of you full-time working Mommas are rolling your eyes right now from the comfort of your corporate offices, but bear with me here. Imagine, if you will, being "in the zone" on whatever project you're working on - the ideas are flowing, you've never been more inspired - when a coworker comes and interrupts your groove. But your coworker doesn't speak a language you understand, and when you can't immediately fulfill this coworker's desires he bites your thigh, hard, and draws blood. Since you don't have time to file a complaint with the Worker's Comp department (if there even was one) you find some way to occupy your annoying coworker and return to your desk to attempt to pick up whatever tiny thread of inspiration might still remain. Your annoying coworker has a shorter attention span than a fly, so he's back up in your sh*t within two minutes, again spewing some nonsense you can't for the life of you understand, followed by high-pitched screaming and tears. You once more attempt to appease the most irritating person in your office with an object that someone told you is "amazing" and "guaranteed to provide hours of entertainment" when your phone rings for an important conference call that you simply must take because if you don't you'll miss the deadline for next week's assignment. Guess who hates you being on the telephone more than anything in the world? That's right! You're ever-annoying coworker! He starts screaming at the top of his lungs, making it nigh on impossible for you to hear anything but every tenth word uttered by this VIP on the other end of the phone. Finally, out of complete and utter desperation and a gut-wrenching fear of being fired from your job, you lock your coworker in a gated area, throw him some sort of preservative-filled food stuff, and hope that he doesn't choke/injure himself/burn the house down while you escape to another room in an effort to scrape together enough information from the three minutes left on the conference call to write a 3000 word article. Oh, and you'll be lucky if you can even find your way to the other room, as your entire house is littered with toys and dirty laundry and half-eaten food from G-d only knows when, all of which you'll be expected to pick up sometime after dark once you've fed your child and your husband some sort of Martha Stewart-inspired meal and you're so exhausted you can't see straight and you still have to finish that damn writing assignment.
So, yeah, that's why I hired a nanny. Plus I really, really need to be able to shower on a guaranteed basis at least twice a week.