I start work at around 9:00am, like most people. But at 3:57pm something happens that disrupts my workday and interrupts the flow of task-completion. Because while there are benefits to working from home… a continuous workday is not one of them.
What disrupts me? It is as yellow as a bumble-bee and significantly larger than a breadbox. It also has a diesel engine. It is a school bus. More to the point, it is the precious cargo aboard this particular vehicle that causes a hiccup in my productivity.
My two children run wildly across the street screaming “DADDY!” and we discuss how their collective day went. Did you finish lunches? No? Sure, finish the snack that you didn’t eat. (But wash hands, first.) Do you have homework? Do you need help? Of course you’d prefer help. Let us not forget that daily reading assignment, and the challenge issued by your teacher to read even more minutes. Sure, I’ll initial completion. And is that a math review? A test is coming? What about your writing workbook? Forgotten at school? But that has the spelling words in it! We need those to study and do today’s activity. We better drive back to school.
It’s a barely-controlled, sometimes explosive ratio of chaos-to-joy. As much of a pain as the coming home ritual seems to be, my family is my life — more so than anything. Do I get a chance to make up for that lost hour? Yes! Sometimes I do that late, late at night. I mentioned benefits of working from home? Making weird hours is one of them. What I’ve discovered is that the inverse is not true: I can’t make up for missing this crucial time with my kiddos.
The good news is that it is highly likely that you will never even notice as I switch hats from “design nerd” to “daddy.” As my client, I hope it isn’t annoying. In fact, as my client, I think it is important for you to understand that putting projects on a freelancer’s plate is what puts actual food on these little people’s literal plate.
So yes, I will find a way to meet your deadline, because that’s what I do. And you bet I’m available between the hours of 9:00am and 3:30pm for your conference call. After that, I am much less likely to be available, unless you happen to be good at tutoring common-core math.