As one of my long-time blog readers, Adnan, commented, the shadow of silence stretches long upon this blog. The truth is, teaching qualitative research methods to graduate students in an intensive course leaves me very little time. Any little extra pockets of time must be claimed by my daughter, who is becoming acutely aware of her mother’s absences.
The list of friends and relatives who wonder why I don’t call is becoming long. The list of errands and absolutely-must-do’s is also lengthening daily. The list of “wish-I-coulds” rots in the back room. THAT list now includes a day dream: merely sitting in the sun and dozing. The bigger daydreams – vacations, road trips, beaches and bed-and-breakfast getaways – are a laughing matter. What used to be necessities – 3 full meals, good sleep, and occasional naps – are now becoming irregular events.
But an income is a good thing. It is good to know, when the bills roll in, that they will be paid, inshaallah. It’s good to know when you’re hungry, that you don’t have to think too much about grabbing a meal on the go (you can’t make a habit of it though). And as many of my readers know, it is nice to have health coverage. It’s nice to have transportation. And yet I am always aware of having been the person who could not count on all these things so blithely. I am aware, too, of the vagaries of the job market, and of the uncertainty of the economy. Times have changed. Futures are much more uncertain. We work hard, and we remain on edge.
Sometimes it seems as if our incomes pay to enable us to do our jobs and pay our taxes, and not too much else. As the mother of a young child, as a daughter and a sibling and a friend, I find that I don’t have the freedom or the time to connect adequately with the things in life that – well, give me life. Such as chatting with loved ones, visiting friends, playing with the toddler, and, – breathing freely and reflectively. I work, I remain dissatisfied with my efforts, there is always more I should have done, and there is always more to do YESTERDAY.