Thursday, March 13, 2008

Life’s Compartments

Monica’s very moving post yesterday about caring for an aging parent, then turning to her writing, brought home to me one of the things I’m finding so interesting about my own life these days--although I am not currently in a similar position with the older generation in my family and really admire Monica for what she is accomplishing.

I have a lot of other kinds of things going on all at once, and it’s both exciting and frustrating to deal with them. I didn’t worry about it as much when my kids were younger, when I held a full-time job and also wrote; I just did it all. Now, I think about it, too!

I’m an empty-nester when it comes to my sons. They’re both wonderful, self-sufficient adults. I’m always thrilled to have them visit or to talk to them on the phone, but I no longer have to be as concerned about rearing them on a day-to-day basis.

However, I have a part-time law job and writing deadlines to deal with all at the same time. And throwing an adorable but active puppy into the mix changes the dynamics and how much time I have to deal with everything else. Fortunately, Lexie, who was the younger dog of the house till last year, is stepping right into being the more mature puppy. She’s been playing a lot with Mystie, our new Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, which allows me to write when the pup is tired out enough to sleep.

Then there are all the other things to do with writing that are time-consuming--planning trips to conferences, doing speaking engagements, participating in writing organizations and critique groups...

Oh, and yes, did I mention my husband? Fortunately, he’s supportive and helpful and generally low maintenance. But I want to spend time with him, too.

So, I guess I’d better stop writing this for now. I’ve got lots of other stuff to do!



Kathryn Lilley said...

You gave me a good thought, Linda--if I ever get a dog, I'll have to get two dogs, so that they can play together and keep each other amused! I've heard that there's actually a law in Sweden or Finland or someplace where you are required to get two pets (if you get one) for companionship reasons. Best, Kathryn

Camille Minichino said...

LIfe without deadlines ... what's that?
It sounds as though you have it all under control, Linda, and I'd love to hear about your law job sometime. Are you available for "quick" questions from mystery writers now and then?

Linda O. Johnston said...

Kathryn--One of the primary reasons we got Mystie is for companionship for Lexie. She missed our older dog and was especially needy when we left her home alone. Now, she's playing the same tricks on Mystie, like keep-away, that our older dog Sparquie did to her!
Camille--I'm basically a boring transactional attorney, specializing in real estate. But I'd be glad to try to help on general questions, as long as you don't take it as legal advice!