While the title of this post is not strictly true, neither is the title of my first piece at The Mid, "I'd Trade My Dream Career for a Baby." More accurate would be the title I submitted it with: "I’m 39 and Sad That I Have Books Instead of Babies" but both are true in their way. If someone said to me, "If you stop ____, you'll get pregnant" and the blank was writing one of my columns or editing anthologies or, ahem, writing extremely oversharing personal essays that probably embarrass my boyfriend, I'd probably do it. After all, nothing else has worked so far, right?
But of course I have career goals, and this year one of mine has been to write for at least 12 new publications in 2015 (I'd love more, if you're an editor who wants to work with me!), an average of one a month. I've done my best to be both a specialist in the fields of sex and dating and erotica, but also a generalist, and am incredibly proud that my new work this year is mainly focused outside of bedroom activities because I have plenty of other interests. So I write about hoarding and Google alerts and libraries. I've got a few others in the works about my life and assorted passions, and for me, writing about an array of topics helps me not get burned out writing about sex and leads me down paths I wouldn't have discovered otherwise.
So no, I'm not only focused on having kids, because I know that certainly won't help, and some of what I've been reading about just how unhealthy stress is on the body, especially for pregnant women, has been quite sobering. That more than anything has made me think hard about how I want to live, how I want to work, what I want my days to look like. The last few weeks have been stress city between moving and money and what's felt like not enough time. The bottom line is that if freelancing isn't a good fit, I will have to find another way to make a living. I don't know yet and won't really know until the fall what the best path is. Some will depend on outside forces, but as a Serenity Prayer devotee, I'm trying to look inside and ask what I'm capable of, what feels right, and what's sustainable vs. what's pie in the sky. I don't know yet, but I do know "dream career" can't mean "work as much as possible, and think about work whenever you're not working." That hasn't been healthy and isn't worth it, and wouldn't be doable with a kid anyway. So I'm pulling back a little and trying to plan a summer that is fun and filled with love and friends and travel and searching and openness.
Not related to any of this, savor for love and enjoying the moment, because they made me smile yesterday, here are some heart shaped scones, which were very good (though I thought they were chocolate chip and they were actually blueberry, so had a little surprise bite the first time):