Friday, March 27, 2015

Building A Schedule

The alarm rings at 5, as it has for years. There are kids to get up and out, there are lunches to be made, there is makeup to be put on, there is work to travel to. Except when there is no work.

One of the things with which I struggle most during the work gaps is internalizing a new schedule. A 5am wake up may be painful, but it is part of my schedule. Getting three kids out the door to school may be challenging, but it is part of my schedule. Dashing off to work (at any time) may be constraining, but it is part of my schedule. And when pieces of the schedule fall away, what is left can feel like half a building--a structure with no walls, a framework with no clear purpose. My daily challenge, then, becomes holding on to the walls and the purpose, when they are no longer built in to my schedule.

It might be said that the purpose now is finding new work--a worthy purpose, but not one that fills a day efficiently. It is about looking and waiting and reworking a résumé, and many days, it leaves a person with not much to show for eight hours. It could be argued that the purpose now is networking, but how many cups of coffee can a person really have in a day? It could well be that the break in schedule is the perfect opportunity for a top to bottom home cleaning and organization project. Yeah, let's not even go there.

So, as I navigate through this new daily schedule, I think back to the 7am dry rehearsals and the early edits and the late production nights, many of which I may have thought at the time were too early, too late, or too much. I think back to the squeezing in minutes to do all the things that really needed hours. I long for a new schedule but fear what it will mean. And meanwhile, each day, I find my way through a schedule full of constantly moving pieces.

The alarm rings at 5, and my day's schedule starts again. What will it be today? I won't really know until I build it.

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