Banana boat riding, by the way, is probably the closest thing 11-year-old boys with a thrill for adventure can achieve legally and wholesomely. It is a huge, inflated banana shaped ‘boat’ with handles that riders mount, which is then pulled by a speedboat going scarily fast and making razor sharps turns in order to toss the riders into the freezing cold waters, in this case, of the Camel Straits off of Cornwall. Said boys are of course wearing wet suits, life jackets, and special helmets, and giggling and shrieking maniacally the whole time. Said mothers are tucked into speedboat half praying for the whole thing to be over and for all of us to survive, and half thoroughly enjoying the show. (No pics of banana boating, sadly, I was too busy holding onto the boat!)
But as I find my blogging legs and make up for a few days of radio silence, I want to talk about experts. We live in the Age of Experts – everyone is at least a self-appointed expert in something, but I am not going to claim to be one of them (for more on how to become a self-appointed expert, Tim Ferriss has a great chapter on that in his seminal 4-Hour Work Week). But I’m not going to pretend, dear Reader, that I have figured it all out and I’m going to show you how to master your life and make all your dreams come true. Try surfing the web without stumbling over someone who promises to sort out your life for you, tell you how to leave the 9-5 behind, and write SEO from a Balinese beach. While I confess, I can be a junkie for it at times, it can get a bit tiresome. BUT, I will be telling you about how I have made this adventure happen for Lucas and I, and share my experiences, discoveries and mistakes along the way.
One subject I do know a thing or two about, is the ongoing balancing act, the struggle, of flying solo as a parent and trying to keep your dreams of a life of creative work alive, kicking and productive at the same time. Of course, parenting in and of itself is an act of continual creativity, but I’m referring to creating something outside of yourself, that you hope has validity, purpose and a ‘life’ of its own out in the world -- a novel, a script, a painting, a social movement project, a business, etc.
I have been sole parenting my son for the last six years. His father lives across the pond from America and while Skype is amazing, it’s not quite the same thing as an every day dad. So it’s pretty much me 24/7. There are no blocks of time, other than school, when I’m also working, that I can count on each week to be just my own, not belonging to work, parenting, laundry or cleaning the cat’s litter box. And now, for perhaps some insane reason, we are taking the leap without school! But more on that soon.
3 Things to Keep in Mind When Sole Parenting and Trying to Have a Life:
In my next post I’ll explore and explode 5 Fears of Long-term Travel!
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actor-writer-director, improviser, mother, traveler, general renegade and rabblerouser.