— sojourning, us

Tag "balance"

climbing to get the camera

Working for myself means that it’s way too easy to work all day (and all night, and all weekend …) without coming up for much air. Sure, we eat lunch together as a family and try to take a walk and I put Elisha down for a nap during the day, but I can still seriously just get in the zone and work without thinking about my time. One of the reasons I wanted to work for myself was to be with my family, and if I let myself get caught up in too much work, I miss out on the whole point of being self-employed.

Finding this balance in my life has been one of the most difficult parts of my freelance career. It’s a double-edged sword, though, for when I’m interrupted too often while working (or trying to work) on a project, I lose my train of thought and any creative muse flies out of my brain only to be lost until I can get some quiet time to myself again. With a toddler in the house, my muse is often hiding until the wee hours of the night when everyone is in bed instead of during the day when there are games to play and books to read.


This delicate balance is precious—I love that I’m not missing out on the early years with Elisha and I love that I’m finally able to choose my own clients and nurture my own creative style once again.

I’m still in the process of figuring out what my work day and work week look like, even 11 months into working for myself. Settling into a routine has always been hard for me, and as Elisha grows and as our business grows and as we hope to eventually continue to grow our family, I have to constantly evaluate how I work and when I work and where I work. Every day is different in some ways—Mondays are errand days and Wednesday are late nap days because of Bible study.


These past few weeks have been crazy busy with client work, which is good for the bank account, but difficult for me to manage in terms of balancing my time. I finally had a moment to catch my breath with the boy today, and it felt nice.



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balance by hickoree, on Flickr

balance by hickoree, on Flickr

i wish this post could be something amazing and beautiful about how i’ve found balance in my life between a mother, a wife, and a designer. unfortunately, i’m not there yet. some days, i feel like i’ll never be there. today is one of those days … and, no, it’s not just because it’s monday.

well, maybe just a little.

anyway. in my mind, i can picture my goal. it’s all laid out before me, and i can easily visualize the path i want my life to be traveling upon. close my eyes and i see it. open them, and i don’t always feel confident i can ever achieve it:

i’d like to be designing for myself, from my house, with our kid(s).

and i want this before we even begin seriously considering smith baby #2.

that’s it. that’s my dream in a nutshell. sure, there’s a few loose ends—making a desk space for myself upstairs in the spare room/nursery, finding hubby a job he loves and gets paid for, affording insurance, quitting my current job once i have enough work to go freelance, etc. those are all complicated things that at once excite me and terrify me at the same time.

so, i’m still standing on the shore, barely getting my toes wet. my life feels out of balance. with a baby in the house, all of my maternal instinct pines for me to be at home (sometimes, so does my husband. he does an amazing job with the baby, but i think we both know some things are just better when Eli has me around). with Justin in school, the burden of income for our little family currently falls on me. both are heavy burdens to bear.

with that said, however, i don’t want to make the impression that we don’t have a decent system going at home. we mostly do. it can get wonky at times. life still feels ungainly and weird, but we’re not hating it. we just both know it’s not where we want to be, even if God has us stuck here for now.

i know it can change.

i know it will change.

i know it will happen as soon as i can.

how do you (or did you) find balance in your life? share your experience and give me some inspiration! i’d love to hear it.

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elisha working

elisha working

i’m basically back to work full-time again, 9–5 in the office with a lunch break long enough to let me eat and feed the baby. it means i have to pump twice a day, which i loathe, but for now it’s necessary for our family. we need both the income and the insurance while hubby is finishing school and the baby is growing.

i absolutely loved 9–1 hours while they lasted and would probably be willing to pay the hefty price it will one day require to have my own set hours back. by that, of course, i mean working from home on my own freelancing. i thought going back to work would be easier … i had this ideal vision in my mind of how it would all work out on this side of labor and delivery. i was wrong.

i’ve always known that one day i’d want to be home with my children. i did think that things would’ve worked out by now so that i could do so, but that’s not the case. now, i feel a sense of urgency to get on my “master plan” of sorts (hence, this new site). i don’t want to quit working—i love what i do; i love design. i just want to work near my family. right now, however, with the hubby still a student, i have little choice but to keep us afloat in an office working for an awesome, understanding company. my job is really great and everyone i work with knows how family life is. as much as i love my desk and its windows, however, i loved working from home more. these past three months have taught me that, if nothing else.

this is the beginning of me working towards that goal for myself and for my household.

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