March 21 2017

The Virtues of Slacking Off

Naeesa Aziz

Right now, I’m at a coffee shop in my neighborhood with my shoeless feet up in a chair, sipping a $4 iced coffee and eating a $5 shard of chocolate mush called a gluten-free brownie. 
My baby is at home with his nanny (read: my college-age cousin) and I am supposed to be using this precious, paid for free time banging out the last of my novel. However, instead of writing that, I’m writing this and listening to this and sending funny memes to my friends and family. I felt bad for maybe the first 30 minutes of slacking, and then I realized that I feel GREAT because novels (at least mine) can’t be pressure cooked.
I promised myself to have a draft finished by the end of this month, and of course, as soon as I made that pledge, all manner of distractions unleashed from the furthest corners of heaven and hell, leaving me scrambling for progress during these last days of March. For starters, I have an infant who is not in daycare, I have had 2 out-of-state work trips (it would have been 3 but I didn’t have a babysitter), I started taking an online course (why?!), my babysitter went on spring break, I got a new project from a new client (yay!),  and in a kind of unrelated note, my grandma got a new hairstyle and came over the other day and would. not. stop. talking. about. it. 
Initially, I thought this adversity would make me rise to the occasion and achieve the impossible. But it's just actually stressing me out. A lot.
My situation reminds me of a story I heard on NPR about how children need recess to learn. I get it, man. I need non-productive downtime too.
So, I’m chillin.  


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