We’re up at 4:00 a.m. again today. I don’t remember the last time my husband was called in to work on a Sunday, but I guess we shouldn’t complain. Overtime helps pay the tuition bills. We were also able to help the boys out witht heir spring break plans. #2 son is already on spring break, at the Ultimate Frisbee festival (probably the wrong word) in Georgia. #1 son is going on a long canoeing and backpacking trip next week. I may go on a road trip myself, if I can catch up enough on my work.

I worked yesterday, and got quite a bit done, but not everything by any means. I failed to call the web design firm I was supposed to call yesterday afternoon, I failed to get my Aussies’ blog done, I failed to complete the trade show materials for the insurance company, I failed to finish the stuff for the large non-profit organization, and I didn’t get all the grading done. I did grade quite a lot of stuff (I’m letting the class that ends this week turn in late papers this weekend, so there’s a flood). I did site analysis for the West Coast guys, and I hope they like my work. I also worked on a current internal issue — what productivity tools should we use? We’re trying to get project management, customer relationship management, and accounting/billing tools settled. That is, our PM, CRM, and T&E. I want to arrange a perfect system for under $100 a month. If it gets more costly than that, I’ll begin to feel as though I could just hire somebody to do that stuff. And while we’re searching for the ideal, it’s hard not to feel as though I could have done a whole lot of billable work in the time it’s taking to work out a system.

My custom software guy does this for people: for $50,000 to $100,000 or so, he’ll come in and create a completely customized, completely integrated system for you. I bet it’s worth it. Not in my budget, obviously, but worth it.

And then, having done no housework, grocery shopping, or exercise, I collapsed on the sofa and watched Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, while #1 son called out for pizza. My husband collapsed on the floor nearby and fell asleep.

I realize that the ongoing saga of the breakdown of my private life — if things like my health and home count as private life — is boring. I assure you, it’s boring to me, too. But I don’t know what the solution is.

I think I used to have spells of this, times like Back to School when things were pretty grim, but then things would improve, or get back to normal or something. For a while, I figured that’s what was happening: I was unemployed and job hunting, and then I was getting my business underway, and things were going to improve.

But they haven’t.

I could give up. That is, I could just accept that work is my life, eliminate everything else, and live in squalor. I really enjoy my work, and there are plenty of people in my field who do just that. It doesn’t really seem like a good plan, though. I’m too old to ignore my health that thoroughly without consequences, and I probably couldn’t ignore my family that thoroughly without consequences, either. Plus, I have other stuff I like to do.

And in theory, I could set work hours from 9 to 5 (well, not and teach 7:30 classes, but you know what I mean), do only as much as I can during those hours, and conduct a normal life around those work hours. That really seems as though it ought to work. It works on paper: make a schedule, fit everything in, and stick to it. I just haven’t succeeded at doing it yet.

I think of myself as a capable and disciplined person. Normally, when I have a goal, I figure that I can just put it on my list and accomplish it. I don’t get terribly disheartened by failure, but I also don’t really know what to do about such persistent, complete failure. Continuing to approach it in the same way I have been doesn’t seem reasonable. I mean, it hasn’t worked yet, so why would I think it would suddenly start working?

Hmm. Well, today I have to sing in both church services, and I still have all that work to do, and I promised I’d do the grocery shopping, so I guess I’ll spend some time with Wii Fit and have a proper breakfast and then dig in. Perhaps some inspiration will strike me in the course of all this.