Are you more of a “work to live” or a “live to work” type of person?

(It’s a question featured in this Women’s Health story.)

I definitely used to be a “live to work” type of person. For most of my adult life, I’ve always spent well beyond 40 hours a week working, whether it was juggling a couple of different jobs or putting in way too many hours at my former newspaper home. It’s not just that I needed the money — I have always loved feeling useful and productive. I enjoy stepping back and admiring the thing I put my time and energy into and seeing it shaped by my skill.

Journalism isn’t art, but the sentiment is still there. Whenever I tackle a story, I always feel like I’m putting together a puzzle. During the process, I can’t wait to see what the final picture looks like.

Since I became a mother though, I now “work to live.” I still enjoy my work life. I still step back and admire the things I put my time and energy into. I still love doing my metaphorical puzzles. But if I could, I’d take more days off just to be with my kid. I’d pack her up in the car with her coloring books and we’d drive to the beach. We’d eat ice cream, chase the seagulls, and laugh. Oh, we’d laugh so much together.

Tybee Island, GA | 2018

Tybee Island, GA | 2018

I've been M.I.A. for three months -- here are three reasons why.

It's almost October, and I'm ashamed to say this is the first time I've logged onto SquareSpace since July. Allow me to offer you meme-generated excuses for my absence.

1) After living and breathing my full-time job for nine years, I anticipated a mourning period when I finally left. I did not, however, expect to question my entire identity. I should have seen it coming though. It's happened before.

In seventh grade, I had the highest average in my grade. I brought home trophies on top of trophies on Honors Day because, frankly, I was a nerd who always did well in school. I was known as "the smart girl," and I was OK with that.

The following year, though, I discovered boys, and eventually fell to second place in grade point average to a kid named Douglas. 

I was devastated. If I wasn't "the smart kid" anymore, who was I?

A couple of months ago, I found myself with the same self-doubt. If I wasn't a newspaper editor anymore, who was I?

As a result, I struggled to find the fire and inspiration to publish on this site.

2) When it comes to my own personal affairs, I'm not a great planner. Quitting was the right thing to do, but I wasn't prepared financially. By July, I started to freak out about paying bills, and started focusing a majority of my time on searching for and applying to jobs -- even gigs I knew wouldn't make me happy. Plus, that minor freakout stilted my creativity, and I found it difficult to come up with story ideas for this site as well as for others.  

I'd taken a leap of faith when I moved down here to Augusta, but within only a couple of months, that faith had vanished.

Sometimes I wish I didn't keep up with what's going on in the world. At times, it stresses me out. Take, for example, the last Republican debate. I didn't want to watch it because I knew I fundamentally disagreed with every single one of the candidates on that stage. But I did tune in that night, at the insistence of my boyfriend. And because I couldn't quell my curiosity.

As I listened to Donald Trump, Carly Fiorina and the others attack President Obama, Hillary Clinton and one another, I could only feel my blood pressure rising. Not only because I was frustrated at what they were saying, but also because I know there's a very good chance one of those folks will be my next president -- and there's nothing I can do about it.

The feeling of helplessness is what gets me. The amount of injustices and plain stupidity in the world is so overwhelming at times that I want to burrow myself in a dark cave with a year's supply of candles, books and magazines just so I can forget it all.

Metaphorically, that's what happened this summer. I (mostly) stopped paying attention and started coloring. (No, really.) I sought peace. 


But the summer is over (at least, that's what the calendar tells me) and I'm ready to be accountable to something of my own again. Maybe I needed that break to figure out where I want to take this site. Maybe I'm just saying that because it sounds better than admitting laziness. Well, stay tuned.