I talk a lot about grief, and grieving. I often feel like I’m being blindsided by something else I need to let go of.
Today I realised that as long as Kai is with us, it’s unlikely I’ll ever work again. Intellectually, I made the decision to close my company months ago. Today the emotion caught up and I struggle.
I was proud of what I did. I worked on apps that millions used. I worked behind the scenes on some big brands, making parts of the digital world better. Some of the work I did was average, I’ll admit. Timelines and limited resources and developer constraints often get in the way of excellence and I did the best I could when faced with those challenges. But some of the work I did was fucking brilliant.
It occurs to me that my time at being fucking brilliant in my career is now over. I won’t ever be able to demand the pretty penny I once did. I won’t ever be creating like I was, mingling in the high flyer world of agencies and amazing designers and interesting developers. The digital world moves on so quickly, new trends, new research, new tech and best practices.
Now, when I throw up a simple website or make some pretty cards, that’s it. I feel like I’ve fallen from design grace and have been left behind.
I love Kai, and will forever put his needs before mine, but leaving my job and putting to bed all the work I was doing is a bitter pill to swallow.
Part of it I think is letting go of the glory. Designing for big brands can be impressive. Being ‘just’ a special needs Mum has its own stigma and stereotype, and when I’m stuck in the mundane same same of our days… it’s hard not to feel down about it.
I feel all the feels. I didn’t expect to, but there we go.
Edit: Yes, I can still design things at home in my spare time if I wanted to. I have an option to do that and I’m trying. I’m working with two phenomenal developers but like I said, Kai comes first. Finding time to work in Kai’s day is like trying to capture a sunbeam between your finger tips. No good design work ever happens in distracted 10 minute intervals.