Before we started TTC, my husband and I talked about me going to get my MFA in creative writing, since writing (and selling) a novel is one of my major goals. And knowing me, I need the structure of a program. Plus, with an MFA, I could eventually teach to subsidize my writing habit. So I applied to three schools, all within a half-hour’s commute, all strong programs, all sure to motivate and discipline me in my writing.
And yesterday, I found out I got into the one that was my top choice. The thing is, now I’m rethinking it. Maybe I was naive, but before I thought I could handle work and school and baby.
But now, given the surprising amount of energy — not to mention money — raising a little one entails, I can’t even imagine adding school to my daily duties.
Still I’m debating it. On the one hand, there’s the idea that committing to a program will force me to devote some time to this goal, which has always been so important to me. On the other, it seems like I will be taking precious moments away from my little Babycakes, who would still only be about 6 months old when my program started. And financially, grad school — and the child care it would necessitate — is a major, debt-riddling undertaking. One that my husband and I were willing to accept when it was the two of us. But now that’s something that just seems irresponsible now that Kavi is part of the picture.
So do I give up grad school now that I’m a mom? Can I afford to defer? Or skip it altogether? It seems like the practical thing to do.
But the thing is — will I ever finish that novel? It’s my own fault if I don’t, I know that. Because I could have done it before Kavi arrived. And really, I still can do it now that she’s here. Look at Stephenie Meyer. She wrote and wrote and wrote into the wee hours, after working a hard day, caring for her family, giving it her all. And I’m sure her success is sweeter for it.
I know, grad school or no grad school, that I need to make time for my writing. Because it’s one of my goals. And Kavi will be happier if her mom is happier, working toward fulfilling that dream.
Did your personal goals change — or get put aside — when you became a mom?
Flickr photo by CarbonNYC