To be honest, though, I think that's part of the problem -- the art. Every parent has trouble balancing a career, I know, but the what I find challenging is making time to do the art.
(I also teach music lessons. This part of my job has not been a challenge, other than when my babysitters are out of town, and I have to scramble for childcare or cancel lessons and lose income. To be honest, it's pretty easy to disappear several hours a day and go to that job: a job that begins and ends at a certain time.)
I actually discussed this with a musical hero of mine recently, how I feel terribly guilty hiring a babysitter so I can, um, play the piano. It feels self-indulgent and self-righteous. It's one thing to hire a babysitter to go get a massage (which you should totally do, and you should not feel guilty about it, even though I know you probably will because everything in parenthood is about guilt). It's another thing to hire a babysitter to write music.
You see, things have changed since I released my last record, um, six years ago. People don't buy stuff anymore. Six years ago, I could write a song, record it, and know that I'd at least break even on my cost and time input. (Is that a business term? I used to know my business terms. David? Another MBA? Someone tell me what word that should be, and I'll edit this and credit you.) Nowadays, I know I'll sell some CDs, but I have no idea how many. Six years ago, I printed two thousand copies of West 28th Street without thinking twice about it. The song I recorded last night? You'll hear it on Spotify or Pandora rather than your CD player (do you even have a CD player anymore?). If I'm lucky and I make the ASCAP survey sample, then I might make a few hundred bucks.
Babysitters make more than that.
But the identity crisis, people.
I wish that I didn't have this other thing I need to do, this art thing. I really, truly wish that the only thing I had any desire for deep in my soul, was to be a parent. Or to go to a job that begins and ends and doesn't bother me at 3am with an idea that I should write down, but that I'm just too exhausted to put pen to paper because I haven't slept more than 3 hours in a row in I-can't-remember-when (until last night, when I put earplugs in and went to another room because my husband is a saint).
I know, I know. This is more journal material than blog.
Yesterday I went to Peter's house, recorded a song, and then managed to get a drummer to come over and throw a drum track on there. This is a HUGE start, people. It makes me feel a little more human, but not any less guilty.
Oh, parenthood, the pinnacle of guilt!