It's insane, I know, that I usually wake in the early hours of the morning. It's often because of one of the cats; sometimes it's hubby snoring; or it's because I've come out of my deep sleep and gone into light sleep which is always about either the current stress in our lives or a scene from 11th Century Scotland.
So, I lie there. Awake. Listening to the hum of the fuse box, the night birds (or far too early birds) outside, the tick of the clock in the main bathroom - placed there to help the girls keep track of time. I think: I'm fully awake. Time is precious. Get up.
Nine times out of ten I do. So, at 4:45am many mornings I can be found un-stacking the dishwasher, sorting out the washing, making lunches (and sometimes making the evening meal). This takes me to 5:30, so I check email and blogs.
By 6:00 am I'm ready to write. That's what I do for an hour.
7:00 is me resetting the jug for my cup of tea while I go get the paper. (In our neck of the woods, we are last to get the morning paper - wahh). I also put on the eggs for my breakfast, call out to the hubby and eldest before I settle at the dinner table to do the Sudoku and Code Cracker.
All through this un-cracking of codes, I continue to wake the family; continue with the laundry.
By 7:30 they are surfacing and I'm dressed and fed and doing more chores.
Am I a goddess? No. Look at the end of the day. I'm in bed by 8pm; sometimes, if I'm really lucky, it's 9! I miss out on all those family things like discussing whether Chandler really is the best match for Rachel - meh.
Today I did equivalent to the morning routine, in the afternoon, took a child to the doctor (waited 45 mins - gah) then went out to the horse then came home. God-like husband cooked fab meal but I'd retired straight away to type the minutes of last night's NZSA meeting - cos I said I would. Oh, and I sorted the laundry and put another pile in the machine (don't be mad but this family ALWAYS uses the drier!) so that school shirts and socks are available for tomorrow.
During today, I fended off the bank, the gardener, the mechanic and the lawyer - such is my charm. I also marked 38 essays. And, my class room is still tidy.
Why do I do it?
Because I am a story teller and a teacher and mother and wife. Plagued with all these roles (not a cook - though I can; nor a gardener - though I can - nor someone who sews, paints, knits, runs - though I can and I can and I can - but I choose not to)
I am Tania Roxborogh who is a teacher who writes or a writer who teachers. I am also mother wife friend. And, I hope, good enough at doing all these jobs.
do not envy me, dear reader. The life of a write is not an easy one. We are driven. Plagued. Obsessed. Compelled. Exhorted. Required.
We must write.
I think of the line from Janet Frame's Poem 'Yet Another Poem About a Dying Child' (which I study with my Y11 class) which says: he must rock the web of pain until the kind furred spider with night lamp eyes and soft tread wraps him warm and carries him to a safe place, and eats him.'
Says how I feel at present about being a writer - there are good bits and there are painful bits. We all have to go through what we have to go through to be what we are destined to be.
By the way, though I'm in a struggle place, the writing is coming along well and I'm pleased.
Watch this space