I’m returning from a week on location and largely off the internet. After many, many days of sun and swimming and catching up with a steady-stream of old friends and family members in the community of my childhood, I realize how thoroughly I edit myself on social media.
From many different people, I heard, “You look like you guys have the BEST life.”
Truly, I agree with the sentiment (minus the implication that life can be won, or that I’m doing anything better than anyone else). I feel ridiculously fortunate to share this simple, steady life with Joe. The elemental fact of having three healthy kids and reliable employment is gift enough.
Add to that this place, Tanglewood, we now call home, with its woods, and creatures, and its unfolding potential.
But bear in mind, dear readers, for every post I share of homemade bubbles and fairy houses, there is a sticky mess to be cleaned up or a furious child working through sensory issues. (“No, I will NOT put clothes on today. Or EVER!”)
For every adorable, hug-filled first-day-of-school photo, there’s a backpack full of hours spent soothing worries and practicing meditation with the hope that my brilliant girl won’t (literally) pull her hair out again this fall.
I both genuinely love this life, and fall into bed each night exhausted from the herculean effort it takes to keep everyone clean, happy, engaged, curious, and well-shod. Not to mention the care and keeping of the flora, fauna, and lodgings at Tanglewood.
Which brings me to the transition.
We moved out to the hinterland, on average an hour-and-a-half commute from Joe’s Minneapolis office cubicle, with the hope and expectation that he could telecommute. For two years, he has worked from home two days each week. We’ve seen him more since our move than we did when we lived twenty minutes from downtown.
For two years, he’s been home when I’ve needed backup for one reason or another. He has mowed the lawn during his lunch break, or adjusted his work-at-home days to help me attend work meetings of my own without my little shadow.
He’s been hard at work in his office, available when I just need to sneak in for a moment and say, “Are you hearing this, they’ve all gone crazy!” We share a laugh, and I dash back out into the fray.
Today begins a new era for us. An era of everyday commuting for him. And of working without that backup for me.
It’s nothing to complain about, probably not worthy of posting. We moved out here intentionally after extensive deliberation. We knew there would be phases of our lives that might involve everyday commuting. Though admittedly I didn’t look this fact in the face all that often. But in the interest of sharing the true breadth of our crazy, simple, beautiful, exasperating life, I thought I’d offer a glimpse behind the curtain as we stare down the next hurdle.