Three glorious weeks out of the office and I should be feeling relaxed, refreshed and good to go for the usual hectic autumn period. Truth is, I’m banjaxed. I haven't been sleeping well. I’m wondering if I can do a surge of recharging in the next 48 hours before I return to work, but with two little people asking ‘what are we doing next ?’, it’s looking unlikely.
One of the things that I was most looking forward to on my time ‘off’ was writing. I was overflowing with ideas for blog posts. I thought about stock piling a series of blogs, quickly drafting them all, ‘leaving them settle’, to return to them for a final polish over the coming weeks. I wrote the one that I NEEDED to write, one about my relationship with my step daughter Zara, to mark her wedding day (on the first weekend of my holidays). I had been thinking about it, and fretting about it, for weeks beforehand, wanting to write it and then to ‘do an Ed Sheerin’ and think it out loud. It was a public declaration of sorts. There were a few tears (mine). It’s funny how I could write something about this and yet I’ve never had the - would you call it ‘courage’ ? - to say those words on a one-to-one. I’m glad that I wrote it. It was from the heart and from that place, you can’t go too far wrong.Since then, I’ve mostly been driving, cleaning and making soup. All cathartic exercises. All with my little people on tow. Driving to visit some of my dearest life-long friends in far flung places across the country. Talking about my newly established ‘single’ status - It sounds better than ‘separated’, don’t you think ? Feeling like a failure. Feeling positive and optimistic. Feeling exhausted letting it all out. Feeling exhausted keeping it all in. Feeling exhausted keeping the brave side out.
I’m physically tired from cleaning. The attic, under the sink, wardrobes, the linen cupboards, reorganising the house. All long overdue, mind. It’s all that I’m fit for these days. No deep thought required, but the act is cleansing nonetheless. Coming across mementos that have taken on a new meaning now. No meaning now. Mementos that the children cling onto, that I simultaneously want to let go of.Meanwhile, I’m anxious that I haven’t been writing, something that has given me solstice, distance and a new perspective in the last few years. I missed a deadline for the ‘MS and Me’ blog last week. I feel guilty, but can’t muster the energy to write it, even though it’s written in my head. I haven’t even opened last weekend’s newspapers. Full of atrocities that make the way I am feeling seem self-indulgent, petty and trivial.
Only yesterday, it dawned on me what I have been doing. I’m busying myself to run away from reality. That’s what my working life has allowed me to do, or it’s what I have allowed it to do. This new found summer holiday free time (albeit with two seven year olds swinging out of me) has created head space that I’m not comfortable in filling right now. I don’t want to go THERE.I haven’t been on form for gardening, which is very strange for me, but actually not that strange, when I think about it. There is something very primal about working with the soil that only fellow gardeners will appreciate. I feel that if I did get ‘down and dirty’ that I might dig myself into a hole, cover myself with clay and just stay there. And aside from that, the weather hasn’t been great.
I am hoping for a rest over the weekend, one that involves very little cleaning, maybe a bit of pottering in the garden, but eitherway, one that involves spending time with my precious little people, having a bit of craic. It may be coming into darker evenings now, but I’m looking forward to brighter days. There shall be hilarious blog posts soon about my new ‘status’ and a handbook of how to cope with singledom in your VERY early 40’s. There is life in this dog yet.
Post Script : I wrote this last night, for review this morning. In the meantime, I’ve been snuggled up with the children watching cute cat and squealing goat videos on Youtube. How could I have forgotten about the power of t’internet to heal ?