Sunday, December 12, 2010

Working...

I was talking with my father the other day. I asked him what he had been up to and he responded back with the typical answer: Working. He asked me what I had been up to and I told him that I had been working too. For some reason, I became frustrated and I didn't know why.


When I was growing up, I used to hate it when my dad said that he didn't have time for us. Too many times did we hear the words, "I'm too busy. I have to work." Now that I'm older, I can understand better the concepts of obligation and responsibility. I also think that work was a way for him to escape from us, his brood of children who didn't look very much like him and had wildly independent hearts and minds, children who escaped themselves into worlds of fantasy and make-believe.

I vowed then to be different. To make time for those in my life who were important to me. I realized though that despite my best efforts, I was more like my father than I wanted to admit. I'm just as much of a workaholic as he is. It's true that my work is also my passion and that I am my most happiest when I'm making things, but there are times when I get swept up in what I'm doing and everything else falls away.

It's my hope that when my work/life balance becomes unbalanced, that it'll do more than just be the means of survival and making a living, but will bring joy and beauty in other's lives. I hope that the sacrifices I make today, will enrich the lives of others and will ripple outward. This is my hope when I find myself entrenched in work.

6 comments:

Anne said...

With age comes clarity and wisdom.

flyingbeader said...

I always hate it when someone tells me I'm like my Mother. I don't think so. I've tried my whole life to not be like her. I don't hide from the world, or say nasty things about others in public or shy away from family obligations...but this past month with my husband's illness...who did I call every day for comfort? My Mother...so I guess when someone tell me that again, I'll listen & try to find the good. I think we all need to do that

SueBeads said...

Andrew - my favorite saying to my ex-husband was - when you are on your deathbed, will you want to tell your kids you were too busy??? I know how you feel. Thanks for posting this!

Cindy Gimbrone said...

Andrew - thank you for a very personal glimpse into balancing life and work. The picture of you and your father is sooooo adorable! Men of that generation were so limited in how to express themselves, I think working to bring home the paycheck was a way to express their love by taking care of their families. Unfortunately it rarely satisfied them or their families. I think we're wise to learn and try to balance our lives more fully.

Cindy

Rebecca said...

That sounds like a great thing to aim for. I think it's easy to forget when what we do is also our passion...I'm working/studying crazy long days at the moment and it;s so hard to find a balance and say 'no' to things...we all turn out more like our parents than we would like I think, or perhaps what I mean is we all end up with some of their traits which we vowed we would avoid...that's life! I hope you find a balance that makes you happy.

stacilouise said...

Oh how I can relate! I love to create, and keep trying to grow my business, and can get lost in it.... and I find myself at least once a day telling my kids to hang on, I am busy! And each time I feel awful. I don't want to be that mom! Thanks for sharing, we need to take time to look at our lives now and make changes, before our present becomes the past and wish we had done things differently!