Once upon a time, I had a proper home office, with a door that closed and everything.
It turned into a nursery.
My next home office became my oldest stepdaughter’s bedroom. My next one was a nook in the master bedroom, with a desk that could barely hold the massive computer monitor from 1998 (older than three of our five kids) and where I hated to work at night because it was so far away from the hub of the house.
I started roaming around after that, thanks to my best Mother’s Day Present ever, and thanks to the fact that I only worked from home a day or so a week. But now I’m working from home 99.9 percent of the time, and even though it’s been less than a month, it’s cold and flu season, which means that it’s only a (short) matter of time until I’m working from home with a sick kid or two in tow.
Which means that I need to find a way to reclaim that home office with a door. And I also need to find a way to set a few limits.
Not with work — the team I’m part of has been wonderful. Not with my husband — he’s been nothing but supportive. Not with the kids — yet. Turns out, the person I really need to set limits with is… myself.
I’m the only one wondering why dinner isn’t on the table at 6. And why the laundry is heaped in the bedroom, in piles taller than my kids. The house hasn’t been decorated for Christmas, but that’s OK, because I don’t decorate. But the dog hasn’t been brushed, the floors vacuumed, or the fridge stocked. And while everyone else is willing to cut me some slack, I’m stressing over the way I haven’t seamlessly transitioned into this chapter of my career.
How do you juggle your work and your family when your office is at home?