I’m thrilled to share my friend Lindsay with you today to start off our Interviews with Real Life Creatives Series! I met her several years ago at the mom-of-small-children hub in our town: Toddler Time at the library. She’s delightful and dedicated to her craft and one day, one day- I will get to her yoga class. Promise, Lindsay!
Tell us a little about your family.
I have an an awesome husband, Gary, who is an amazing Daddy, and two boys. Nolan is almost five. He is sweet, sensitive, and so so smart. Nate is almost two. He is cuddly, funny, and a joy to be around.
Tell us a little about your work.
I am a self employed dance and fitness teacher, which means I do about 1,000 little jobs, to make up a real job 😉 But really, I own and teach dance at The Dance Centre in Williamsburg, KY. I’m going on my tenth year! I also teach Yoga, Pilates, and Ballroom Dancing for the Health, Exercise, Sport Science Department at the University of the Cumberlands. I’ve been doing that for about 8 years. And, along with my husband, Gary, we are the music and choir directors at First Christian Church in Corbin, KY. We’ve been there almost 4 years.
How do you divide up your motherhood/work time?
I work long days 3 days per week. I go in around ten a.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. My kids stay with either my mom, mother-in-law, or their aunt while Gary is at school (he’s a Middle School Dance and Music Teacher) and then they are with him until I get home in the evening. The time varies depending on what is going on with work, but usually around 8:30 p.m. So I’m off on Wednesdays and Fridays, and the kids are with me those days. Sometimes I work from home a little on those days.
Do you feel like your creative work makes you a better mama? How and/or why or why not?
I really do feel like being creative makes me a better Mom. It gives me a chance to be me. To do what I do. I really feel I thrive and can be a better Mom when I have alone time and “me” time. My creative work serves that purpose some times. It gives me something to be proud of. And then I can be Mom when I’m with the kids.
Do you feel that motherhood has stressed your creative work or streamlined your creative routines (or both)?
Definitely both! Before kids, I could work whenever and wherever I wanted to. I worked from home more. Now I don’t get much work at all done at home, so that’s definitely moved to my office at The Dance Centre. It was hard to make that transition, and figure out how much time I need to get everything done with my business. Almost five years and two kids later, I feel like I’m almost there! Just in time to switch up my schedule again soon, to be home more in the evening with Nolan’s entrance to Kindergarten looming! But being a Mom has helped me streamline my schedule, make decisions about what jobs I want to take, and what I don’t, and what is a good use of my time, and what’s not. I always ask myself, “is this particular job worth being away from my kids this amount of time?” If the answer is no, I say no.
What do you hope to accomplish with your creative work?
My goal for The Dance Centre is to bring dance and a safe, positive place where kids can grow in confidence and their own creativity to the Williamsburg area. I love bringing art, beauty, and the tools to continue to make that art and beauty to the kids in our area.
What does motherhood mean to you?
Loving my kids and being and doing my best for them.
What keeps you going when it feels too hard to do both?
I know this season with small children is only for now. Soon they will go to school, and soon after that, they will be grown up, so I am really trying to enjoy the moment with them right now. A laugh, a bright smile, a hug from one of them is balm for the soul. And have an amazing support system. Without my husband, Gary, I couldn’t do this job and be a mom. I couldn’t live this life.
What’s the best piece of advice that you’ve used to thrive as a mama and a creative?
Give yourself some grace. This is hard sometimes. And probably not hard like you think it will be. Hard in unexpected ways. Try to roll with it, have a sense of humor. Schedule your creative time. Make it a priority and make time for it.
If you could learn new creative skill what would it be?
I would love to learn to paint and draw. I also really love graphic design, and would love to learn more about that, too.
Wasn’t that encouraging? This interview series has been one of my favorite projects to put together. I’m so glad we can all learn from each other and share our experiences. Head on over and like The Dance Centre’s Facebook page to keep up with Lindsay’s work!