These are self portraits taken during the day and night around what I’m normally doing – just pausing to balance the camera somewhere. The idea came while trying to vocalize just what it is I do all day, and trying to explain to old friends and colleagues who I am now. I combined my passion for creativity with my overwhelming urge to step away from the gosh-darn dishes for a minute – and I came up with this project.
So, who am I? Who I am is Mother, Wife, Cleaner, Lover, Cook, Launderer, Administrator, Housekeeper. I do the day shift and the night shift.
Now it’s not that any ONE of these jobs is particularly hard, it’s doing them SIMULTANEOUSLY that’s hard.
Try running a corporation using one person – the CEO running from meetings to reception to answer the phone, hoofing it to the kitchen to prepare lunches, cleaning the board room then stalking around on security duty at night – and you’ll see what I’m getting at.
But from the outside it’s hard to see how much is being done.
It’s not just the mothering, in my opinion that’s the fun part. It’s the rest of the stuff that successful mothering sits upon. You could just play all day like a big kid with your kids – but they need to be nourished with good food, dressed in clean clothes and feel comfortable and stay healthy in a clean house. Other relationships need to be attended to and nurtured also.
If it’s a successful day, by the end of the evening there won’t be anything tangible to show for it. The house will be as tidy as it was in the morning – pots and pans that have been used and washed several times will be sitting quietly back in the cupboard, little vests, socks and onsies will be tucked back in the drawers.
The hard work and chores get absorbed by the house, so there’s really nothing to see – unless of course something hasn’t been gotten around to. Those things, those few things that didn’t get done shine like big flashing beacons of slovenliness “HEY, LOOK AT ME I’M AN UNWASHED DISH, LOOK AT ME I’M AN UN-DUSTED CABINET!”
I wouldn’t change it for the world, I’d only change other people’s opinions of Stay at Home moms and what it is we do all day.