Today was one of those days when I thought—holy smoke, what would I do if I had a kid? Up at 5:50 a.m., at the office by 6:45, on set by seven, makin’ a tv show all day while trying to break another episode in the five spare minutes we had, and in the other five spare minutes calling my mom and my friend CA, who had a big feature pitch (She sold it! Yay!), and reading up on the psychology of gambling for our next episode between takes of the episode that’s shooting. Left the set around nine p.m., picked up my dog Moose from physical therapy, home a little after ten. Now it’s eleven, I have to get up in eight hours and fifteen minutes to go to my trainer, and I really want to write this post which is quickly becoming incomprehensible. Think I need to sleep.
Slept. And here’s the thing that I couldn’t get to last night: I am the luckiest person in the world to have the job that I have.
Yeah, it’s a fun, interesting job, but that’s not what I’m talking about (because that would be breaking Rule 1). I’m talking about the fact that once I have a child 1) I can afford a great nanny. And 2) (And this is the main one.) I can bring a kid to work! Not all day every day, but if I have a long day like yesterday, Kiddo can come visit! And the benefit of having a writing partner is that we can trade off on the long days. So during the six or so weeks a year that we’re actively shooting one of our episodes, we have the flexibility to do whatever has to be done to make sane schedules and time with our kids a priority.
It doesn’t hurt that tv writers get a decent amount of time off. Thanksgiving, Christmas/Hanukah, usually a few weeks in the spring. Of course, we’re very often working during our “time off,” but writing is a fairly flexible pursuit. It doesn’t have to get done during certain hours— it just has to get done. And many people don’t staff (sometimes on purpose, sometimes not) and instead do other writing projects (pilots, features, books), which is a far more flexible life. So, on the crazy days, I just need to remember that—for being a parent—this is probably the best job around. Which doesn’t mean it won’t be hectic and stressful and crazy and exhausting, and that I won’t sometimes fail to find balance. But I’ll do my best... and that’s usually pretty good.
Every day I get an email from Real Simple with a Daily Thought. Sometimes it’s a dud, but it’s often something wonderful, like Gandhi’s “Be the change you want to see in the world,” or Helen Keller’s “Life is a daring adventure, or nothing.” Today’s email came with a link to 9 Quotes That Make You Happy. My favorite is “All seasons are beautiful for the person who carries happiness within.” -- Horace Friess