While you sleep I watch and write.
When I first moved to Eugene I searched for work for a month or two before finding a night shift position at a group home for teenagers. I wasn’t sure about staying up all night five days per week but let’s face it: I’m no stranger to the night.
It turned out the position suited me well. My job involved insuring the safety of our clientele–and when it comes to wayward teens I am a claws out, karate-chopping mother-hen-type gal (I remember what it was like to be in their shoes, many having been abandoned by their parents and experiencing unimaginable amounts of helplessness).
After being laid-off (surprise!) in November I sulked for nearly three months, writing a bit at first but losing my momentum as it seems writing and life and work all go hand-in-hand (I’ve heard many writer’s attest to this). Then, last week, in some crazy twist of fate, in a “the more things change the more things stay the same” kind-of-way, I was rehired. I will sit at the same desk, I will walk the same grounds at three a.m. admiring the same moon and all its phases and I will cook breakfast at the end of my shift in the same kitchen for the same people.
I am ecstatic. I’d recommend that any writer consider the night shift. In between bed-checks and garbage-taking-out and pots of coffee: there is writing. There is quiet. There is time and space and somehow, money too. Graveyard work + Writer’s dreams = Happy camper.
Foot note: This position is only temporary. In March my boyfriend and I are moving to a small-town south of Portland, so that I can pursue my writing dreams “in the big city”–only we’ll be living in a little house on a farm. Cause that’s how I do.