It was half term last week, the week of absentmindedness. Not a long enough holiday to actually switch to no-school mode, sufficiently short to wonder each morning whether I have to get up and go by 7.30am. A week of arrangements and logistics and the usual tag-teaming of having two children four years apart; not much entertains them both simultaneously. I had an ill-timed three day college sequential in the middle which meant that the planning got trickier. Thank goodness for friends and family at these times.
Meanwhile, winter continues and I long for some sun that might lift these doldrums. Today is better.
Now they are back at school and my life resumes with some order, or at least I can be alone to gather my thoughts and write a little bit. It’s funny; when I am with my children constantly it can be too much and when they go, I miss them. I see again that motherhood is no happy medium. It’s all things and every thing in one hit.
I am thinking a lot about it at the moment as another realm of parental challenges have come our way, with each passing month or year my children change and things come to fore and we have to deal with them as a family. I see that I am reactive in the worst way, for all of my discussion about parenting, especially parenting teenagers, I struggle to keep my cool. I say things, I say too much, I explain and make a dialogue that is not helpful. I need to stick to my guns more, say ‘no’ when no means no but also say ‘yes. I find that I am habitual, I stick to old habits and fail to recognise that the thing they’re wanting is actually reasonable. To stay out later, to travel alone, to see friends that are outside of the pre-ordained set that I am familiar with. This is all part of it, it’s just that as a mother, I find myself resisting. Then I have to analyse why and let it go. If there were one thing, one quote that was perpetually relevant to me it is this: let it go.
Meanwhile the house is not yet finished, still the requirement for electricians and carpenters to complete it. But the space itself is done and I can see now the benefits of living in a home where everything has its place and where the decor pleases. For so long it grated, before, when it was a labyrinthine old cottage, everything old and brown. Now it’s an open space, glass-walled and white-washed and that works much better for me. It’s like a blank canvas each time I come downstairs in the morning and that somehow makes my soul a little bit happier. I rue the fact that I am so affected by my surroundings and see a fickleness in it, but nevertheless it is making me happy.
The academia of last week tails off and I go back to my writing habits, edging closer to a completed manuscript, it will be done I think in the next month. I then have a monster editing task and a re-write, but I shall, if I submit it, pass my first year. Yay me. One step closer to obtaining another degree! I do ask myself sometimes why I am doing this? Doing a Masters has been invaluable to me, it lifted me out of the boredom of housewifery and gave me a huge challenge – to write a book in about nine months – and I am nearly there. I would recommend it to anyone, it’s been my salvation mentally.
Physically I am still doing yoga – which I maintain is the answer to all ills – and I’ve started running again. The combination of these two things enables me simply to maintain the status quo of my body and I wonder, with awe, how women my age take on challenges like marathons and triathlons. For now me and my 5K run is fine a couple of times a week
I’ve got to be honest; do you mind? I am however finding life a little quiet. Maybe it’s the time of year, maybe it’s just where I am at right now, but it seems like the lustre has lessened. I am grateful for this time in many ways; a quiet life is an easier life surely? But equally I see that at the responsibilities we have right now are conspiring to create a drudgery. I’m sure there was more fun in my 30’s? Or is that rose coloured spectacles? Either way, happy and healthy has got to be the best outcome, even if achieving it is not the most thrilling! Have a good day…