Friday, January 28, 2011

I Am NOT Superman


I know, this totally sounds like a Monday Sanctuary post title. And sort of, it is. Because on Monday we are having an AWESOME interview and ARC giveaway that you will NOT want to miss. You hear me? So be sure to stop by Monday for the unveiling of the surprise. Now, on to today's post.

I am NOT Superman. And some of you (particularly my Type-A friends) are going to hate me for saying this, but YOU aren't Superman either.
There's only one man of steel. While he may have been a writer of sorts, he didn't have to worry about being a spouse, a parent, subbing to agents, being on time for carpool, hosting birthday parties, baking for the PTA, and the myriad other things that all of us try to squeeze into a mere 24 hour period.

Now, I realize what I'm about to say won't be a surprise to some of you, but it took me a long time to learn it. So I thought I'd share.

You cannot do it all at the same time.

This applies particularly to women. We've been taught that just like men, we can do anything we want... be anything we want. So we think we can be a high-powered executive, and a made-from-scratch mom, and the perfect wife. Oh yeah, and a debut novelist. All at the same time.

And that's where you're wrong. We can do and be anything. But not all at once. The super-writing me is a lousy wife. She ignores her husband all night, mostly every night, in favor of the computer screen. The high-powered attorney me was a sucky mom, who was tired all the time and raced out the door at night to just barely pick the kids up in time from day care.

Do you see where I'm going with this? There are only so many hours in a day. Now, if you're unlike me, you can maximize your time by doing something insane (think sleeping less than 8 hours a night or not procrasting or writing blog posts). But only Superman can fly fast enough to make Earth spin backwards on its axis. For the rest of us, time marches forward. And if you keep trying to do it all -- and do it to the best of your abilities, you'll burn out. It's that simple.

Okay, I'm off my advice soapbox for now. Have any of you accepted that you cannot be perfect at everything all at once? Was it a hard concept to swallow? Or am I just dead wrong? If so, please share your secret superpowers!


  1. I accepted the fact that I wasn't perfect all the time along time ago. I found that all that stressing made me go crazy!!! Great post! I agree with you!

  2. Well said, Jessie. However, I am sure you ARE a super mom. You are at least a super friend and colleague and I love you for it.

  3. I'm more the Supreman type and not at all upset about it! I'm in the "First one thing and then the next camp." Keeps me sane.

  4. I'm in the same boat as a mom and a writer. It's just like you said, lots of hats to wear.

  5. Oh, man is this true. Christy and I both blogged about our epic fails last week (mostly as moms, but yeah, as writers, too). A little piece of my heart cries everytime my husband says "Are you gonna' clean the house or just keep screwing around on that computer?"

    He doesn't mean it, but with no book deal to show yet, he's getting sick of the messiness and there really, truly are only 24 hours in a day - with 9 for work, 8 for sleeping, at least 1 for cooking, there's not a whole lot left for showering/mothering/cleaning!!

    Thanks for letting us know it isn't just us!!

  6. @ Erica - you are definitely NOT alone!

  7. So true. It's hard to try to get everything done, especially as a WAHM. I can't do everything at once, and if I try, I do them all horribly!

  8. Not gonna miss it! And congrats to Shelley!


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