If you're reading this you probably already know a little bit about my life. If you don't, here's a summation:
I make chocolate truffles, color my husband's comic strip, write a column for my local paper, teach at two local colleges, run a private harp studio out of my home, parent three children, work in over 15 different kinds of art media, compose and perform music for harp and small jazz ensemble, write for 4 different blogs, manage my husband's graphics business, do all the PR for my husband's comic strip, teach general music at my daughter's school, serve on the board of my daughter's school, serve on subcommittees (like fundraising) for my daughter's school, chauffer children hither and yon - the list goes on, but I imagine you're getting the picture.
Recently my husband and I attended the Festival of Cartoon Art which consisted of A) taking in some truly wonderful and inspiring presentations by top cartoonists and B) staying up until 2:00 am each night hanging in the bar with top cartoonists and drinking too much. (The headache I had Saturday a.m. rivaled Hepburn's in The Philadelphia Story).
Because I love cartoonists so much and have a number of good friends in cartooning circles, I make extra chocolate truffles and take them with to feed to anyone lucky enough to be in the bar at the time.
I mention this because, this particular weekend, as Richard Thompson (of Cul de Sac fame) reached for a truffle he said, "Anne - is there nothing you cannot do?"
I didn't have a good response at the time.
I do now.
Richard - here are some things I cannot do:
I cannot find time to read anything longer than a cereal box. I cannot tell you where my phone charger is. I cannot find my wallet. I cannot seem to remember to call my sister on her birthday (yesterday). I cannot cook any supper for my kids that takes longer than 20 minutes. I have not yet unpacked my suitcase. I haven't the brain space to write up the CV that is due for accreditation at one of my teaching jobs - I think I have one prepared in a file somewhere on my computer, but I don't know how to find it. I cannot seem to remember to pay my phone bill on time (aren't they supposed to wait at least 30 days beyond the due date before they threaten to disconnect you? When did it become only a week?) Again - I could go on, but I think you can tell where this is going.
My name is Anne.
And I'm a yes-aholic.
I'm not asking for your pity.
When I was trying to think of a name for this blog, I flirted with "Overworked and Underpaid" but I settled on "Overbooked and Underpaid for a very important reason.
Overworked someone does to you. Overbooked you do to yourself.
I could probably cut out most of the things I do. Especially since easily 60% of them are for no pay.
So why don't I?
Why do I try to do all these things and make myself crazy?
Well, partly because there are two main components to my yes-aholicism.
Firstly, I am bursting with ideas - so many that I always have at least 5 knitting projects going at a time. This is not unusual for creative types - most artists have more unfinished work than finished - it's a curse where you get the idea for the next piece of art when you're only 22% done with the current one.
Secondly, my husband and I both had the amazing stupidity to choose jobs in the arts and we are both completely freelance. That means we get no paycheck.
No paycheck, no paid vacation, no employer provided health insurance, no tenure... again, I'm sure you get the picture.
Somehow we've sort of made it work. But I've never felt settled.
I've never felt I was doing what I was truly meant to do. Worse, I'm 47 and still have no idea what that certain something I'm supposed to be doing is.
So I keep throwing spaghetti at the wall, hoping that whatever sticks is the thing I'm meant to be doing.
And you lucky readers just happen to be between me and the wall.
I'll try to shift a little better attention onto managing my time and keeping all the blogs tidy and updated.
And I'll look for something to get the spaghetti stains off your shirt.