the light

March 17, 2014 |  Category:   life



I had lunch with a friend last week and it was one of those situations where you look around and see just how unbelievably crowded a place is midday on a Thursday and you think to yourself (or to each other with just a glance), who are all these people? Do these people have jobs? Or is this a leisurely lunch break? Of course the irony is that we were there too in the middle of the day, not working at office jobs, having a leisurely lunch, but we couldn’t help but feel like we were pretending to be someone other than ourselves and not the moms of 2 kids from a less hip Brooklyn neighborhood. So dumb, I know.


I nearly fell off my chair laughing at the reaction of my friend when I pointed out that someone else was wearing a matching fake furry vest similar to hers. To her dismay, it wasn’t on any of the numerous young fashionable people in the restaurant, but worn by the only other woman who was older than us in the room – and probably by a good 20 years. She didn’t find any consolation when I told her my 10 year old also owned a fake fur vest (sorry M, I had to tell the story. So funny).


But…the light. I do feel like I see it, finally. I think I’ve been buried under darkness for too long. Work has been a good distraction, but also part of the problem. One of the reasons why I’ve been saying yes to everything and working as many hours as I have the last 8 months is so I can build in a cushion to enable some positive changes in my life. You can’t sustain that level of crazy without going crazy yourself, but the process of digging yourself out of that dark hole is slow and the hurdles are entirely mental and emotional.
It’s like when I turned to Mark a few weeks ago and said, “money isn’t everything, you know” when he wanted to add 8 more weekend market dates to this month when in the past we took the month of March off from markets. I wanted to do more things as a family, go on day trips and such, but that was the right call as far as business is concerned; we’ve been killing it every weekend even though it’s meant that Mark hasn’t had a single day off in a month. You do have to seize the opportunities when you see them and he’s been bringing the girls with him on Sundays to spend more time with them, so it hasn’t been all that bad. But I’m very much looking forward to the days ahead. There’s a lightness to them that I haven’t felt in awhile.

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  • Lakshmi March 17, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Ahh, lightness may be my favorite word these days.

    • Jenna March 19, 2014 at 1:04 am

      It’s a good word, isn’t it?

  • Rachel March 18, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    I wonder the same thing ever day as I drive around to my various freelance jobs – “How are all of these people able to just be out and about in the middle of the day?” – always forgetting that I’m one of them, haha. It’s nice to not be a typical 9-5-et. I did that for a little over a year and I was so unhappy the whole time. Cheers to leisurely lunches in place of a guaranteed paycheck! =]

    • Jenna March 19, 2014 at 1:06 am

      I was going to say, sorry that you were so unhappy during your time freelancing, but knowing what works for you and what doesn’t is so valuable, yes?

  • Joann March 19, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    I feel like the work/life balance thing is so on everyone’s mind these days… it certainly is on mine. I just… don’t like the feeling of being so busy all the time, in comparison to my 15-25 year old self that loved it.

    Also: that ricotta dish at Five Leaves is soooo good.

    • Jenna March 19, 2014 at 8:22 pm

      You know, as I get older and the kids get older, the work/life balance struggle isn’t so much about work and parenting, but for me it’s becoming so much more about my freelance work and our business. How to juggle both? Or make that leap 100%. Maybe I just need to believe in it and myself more.

  • JustineH March 31, 2014 at 9:51 am

    These are really beautiful photos, Jenna. You have a wonderful way of seeing the world, and your photography is always pushing me to improve my own.