Creating with less

April 18. We’ve had magnetic poetry stuck to the microwave for several years, but I’ve purged piles of magnets the last few times we’ve moved, so the selection of words is very limited—but this restriction has been freeing. And overall, during this period of isolation, I’ve surprisingly found productivity and efficiency with less. Even as I work shorter shifts each day, I seem to focus and get stuff done (and when we get to the other side of this, I will be a big proponent of shorter work weeks). I’m reminded of Emilia’s newborn months, when she slept on my chest in between breastfeeding sessions—all day, all night—and the writer in me came alive in short spurts yet long Instagram captions, often in the middle of the night, in between the moments of my new life as a mother and milk machine. I have not typed furiously like that since, but over the past month as we stay home, I’ve experienced wee moments of creativity from these silly word magnets and other unexpected ways, like Emilia’s coloring books and other random things around our house. I’ve also reached a point where I can now stare at the wall as she falls asleep on my arm and the circular imperfections of wood on our doors look like faces in Dr. Seuss books. So thank you for the little bits of inspiration, Day 41.

NYC

Back in New York City on a last-minute, unexpected trip.

Tagging along with the husband, who is here for work.

Staying in a suite in a hotel in Times Square.

So. Many. People.

I’m here for free — I cannot complain.

Been meaning to visit all year.

Finally spending time with some of my favorite people.

I miss my friends.

Walking these streets, I am reminded of what a city truly is.

That San Francisco is small, sterile, soulless.

I’m so glad I left.

I’m reassured — from my friends, from this place — that we’re doing the right thing.

That our path is not traditional, that there will be bumps, that we will get to where we need and want to go.

That the little house is but one piece of a bigger puzzle, of a larger plan.

That we just need to take one step at a time.