Child riding scooter on asphalt.

Nebulous adjective US  /ˈneb.jə.ləs/: (especially of ideas) not clear and having no form.

Over two weeks in, and I finally sat down at my laptop to see if I could pick up where I’d left off. I had been in the middle of writing a guide for my newborn clients when things took a hard left into crazytown. I’m now trying to add to that series, and damn, no one needs “A Really Dark and Pessimistic Take on What to Wear to Your Newborn Session”.

So here we are.

Living in the in-between.

The day to day is exactly the same, other than my husband puts his laptop away on the weekend. I’ve been a mostly stay at home parent for ten years now, so this shouldn’t be that far away from normal for us.

BANG! The wind rips the screen door out of someone’s hands every ninety seconds. A forgotten sweatshirt, banged up knee, a toy needs to go outside. Bathroom breaks. I’m thankful they’re outside (although this was a Mandate, not a Choice), but…

RING! Husband on a conference call.

Shit, the sun is out. Should I be outside enjoying it? It’s supposed to snow on Thursday. But I really need to be productive. Or do I? Can I?

Wait, am I supposed to take the kids on a walk this afternoon?

Crap, I need to get meat out of the freezer.

Every Sunday, I fill out the week ahead in a daily planner. As long as I can remember, I’ve always loved to do lists. There’s a certain satisfaction in watching items get crossed off, one by one. But if I’m honest with myself, the to do lists are more to get the thoughts out of my head. If I can get them onto paper, they no longer need to take up the increasingly valuable space in my head.

It’s been strange to have nothing to fill out. There’s still laundry, groceries, cleaning, (maybe) working. But I don’t have the predictable framework of “volunteering on Monday from 8:30 to 11” or “dentist appointment on Friday” to work around. It’s just…empty. The world is my oyster! The opportunities are endless! Or is it one more place I need to make decisions?

SLAM! Kids are back in. They’ve brought rocks.

This probably means we need a schedule. Start working on school at 9 am, kids go outside at 11 am, dinner is at 6 pm….but I don’t know how to make a schedule if I don’t know what I’m supposed to be getting done. This kid needs to work on math, set them up with that app. That kid needs to work on her reading, help her through this one. Or wait, should I be using this program? Damn, she’s really struggling with this math concept. Do we need to review? How do we do that?

Don’t put pressure on yourself, they say. Enjoy this time with your kids! Teach them math through baking! Go on walks! Read together!

But what if we run out of flour or sugar? Can I get more?

They can’t reach a collective decision on if we’re walking, riding bikes, or riding scooters. Fine, everyone do your own thing. Four blocks in, someone is unhappy with their mode of transportation. Mad they aren’t in front. Must go home NOW.

Why is it quiet? Should I be intervening? Is my husband having to stop working to deal with kid things while I hide downstairs?

Silence. They’ve gone to the carwash. This is the first time I’ve been alone in the house in 19 days.

I’m somehow both encouraged and discouraged by the creativity being shown by certain artists and small businesses right now. Decisions are being made that will have positive effects far down the road. But how do I do this? How do I find the creative space to not only DO and execute these things, but the ideas themselves?

I’ve forever felt like an analytical imposter in an artist’s world, and these last couple weeks are really bringing those dark thoughts to the foreground.

They’re back.

Overall, am I doing okay? Not okay?

Answer: both and neither. It’s nebulous.