Thursday, September 29, 2016

Filling In

When you freelance, a great deal of what you're doing is "filling in"--working in place of someone who is sick or promoted or on maternity leave. It means getting up to speed quickly, closing a gap, making it seem as though nothing is all that different from the normal day-to-day.

So, after my many years of filling in, you would think I would be good at it. And perhaps I am, because there are days when I feel as though I am filling in everywhere--

I'm filling in for the nannies we used to have when I try to schedule my children's time and help them clean their room.

I'm filling in for the better chefs in my household (or for the takeout places in my neighborhood) when I throw together whatever dinner works with the ingredients we have.

I'm filling in for my daughter at college when I attempt to help her siblings with pickups and pep talks and homework.

I'm filling in for for the lottery check that never manages to land in our mailbox when I look for every hour of work, and every new opportunity to make it all work.

Sometimes, when you're a freelancer, filling in turns into full time, and what you thought you were just doing temporarily becomes a little more long-term. So, maybe filling in is more than just holding a place. Perhaps it's training or practice, or just making the best of where you are. So, as with freelancing, I fill in as well as I can. Because you never know how things will turn out when you're filling in. So, you may as well make the most of the opportunity.

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