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Thursday, October 01, 2015

Blog More in October: Meet the blogger

I am Ashley.

I like a lot of things. And, I guess, I am a lot of things, too. I feel like a "meet me" post should flow easily from a basic foundation of explaining who I am -- like the first sentence should say, "first and foremost, I'm ____", but I'm not first or foremost in anything.

Right now, this very second, I'm sitting in my lab at work, wearing blue gloves and typing awkwardly on a keyboard covered in a rubbery protector, while texting about the kids at home and what I'm missing out on so I can be here, instead of there. Maybe that's what I am.... a person divided between loves. Home and work; heart and science.

I traded my pen and ink on paper, for keeping memories, for indelible marker on test tubes, to keep things organized. I replaced my full and busy and wonderful and dreary days at home, for long and busy and wonderful and boring days at work. Instead of napping on the couch, afternoons in the sun with a cat, I drift and bob and snap awake at sudden halts, groggy mornings on the bus with strangers. I leave my heart at home, to fill a neglected brain (and, in full honestly, bank account, too).

I've been blogging here for a good long while... looks like a decade of published posts. I had no idea. In that time I've gone from being a student and mother, to a SAHM to two; then it was back to being a student, albeit in graduate school that time, and then a SAHM to three, then four! And now I'm working a lab. See? Home and work, heart and science.

My stints as a stay at home mom were filled with walks, school pick-up and drop-offs, cupcakes and parties, holidays and dinners, cats and quilts. My life as a student or scientist has always meant being away from home during our waking hours. While at home I scrapbook and makes things and do things, all the while questioning my productivity and greater contribution to the world, yearning to do something quantitatively meaningful with my life. While not at home, all I want to do is return.

Perhaps this blog post was not intended so much for you, dear reader, as for me. I've been thinking a lot lately about how much I struggle with balance; it's an all-or-nothing game for me. BALANCE. Such an elusive state. And it's one of those  hot, trendy words right now.. everyone and their sister is reaching for balance. I thought, just a few nights ago, that the tense of this word and the resulting goal is all wrong, for me. Balance is a solid-state; it implies that one has arrived, and achieved. BALANCING is an active state.. the state of doing, the state of trying, the dynamic state of living.

Let me try this again: I'm Ashley, and I'm balancing.


(Here's the basics for those that prefer that sort of thing):

  • Ashley
  • blogger
  • scientist
  • scrapbooker
  • lover of fabric
  • maker of partial quilts
  • published author (in scrapbooking and science)
  • lover of paper
  • wish I could paint nice things
  • collector of postage stamps
  • non-committed reader of books
  • would like to run
  • baker of cupcakes
  • bus commuter
  • lunch packer
  • married to a tall guy named Paul
  • petter to three cats
  • mama to four lovely girls





6 comments:

WreckThisGirl said...

Oh wow, that was lovely to read! Thank you so much for sharing and for partaking to the DMIO project :)

I'm amazed at all the things you manage to balance together, I have less than a half of the obligations and sometimes really struggle to keep it up. Really inspiring, to say the least!

I'll be looking forward to read more from you! Have a lovely day,
Fab x

Juliana Michaels said...

What a fun post and I love that you are balancing life! I think we all strive to do that, you're way of looking at it makes it feel like it is what it is and we are all just doing the best we can!

Elizabeth Cooper said...

Oh, Ashley, this resonated with me so profoundly! Specifically this: "While at home I scrapbook and makes things and do things, all the while questioning my productivity and greater contribution to the world, yearning to do something quantitatively meaningful with my life. While not at home, all I want to do is return."

I'm at home with my 20-month old right now, and I question my productivity and contribution to the world ALL THE TIME. Yes, I know raising child is incredibly important work, but I still question whether I'm doing all I can with my life. Such a powerful post. Thanks for sharing!

Michelle said...

Hello Ashley!
I'm Michelle.
I would love to give you profound words to make you fell better, but as you know, there isn't a simple answer to your ponderings. I will say, however, that you sound like a lovely person. And in the end, isn't that all that matters?

Laura said...

You forgot the bit that explains that you area bit like a superhero for managing all of that! x

LisaDV said...

Love this post. Balancing is a much better tense of the verb.