Thursday, 6 August 2015

Out of Office

For the last three weeks or so, I have had a sick feeling most day and waking early, worrying about my work load and all that I had to do before taking my holidays from work, which were due to start today.  I even contemplated deferring my holidays until September, when my children would have returned to school.  A sure sign that a gal really does need a holiday. 
The nature of my work is that I may have a plan for the day, but that often goes out the window as the vibrant office where I work is like a train station.   I really need to learn to hide in my ‘secret office’ in Athy more often.  To alleviate my stress, I’ve been making lists of Things To Do and taking pleasure in striking a line through what I had completed, or better still, referred to someone else for their attention.  The problem is that I don’t write lists in straight lines.  They are more of a mind map of sorts, so it would be easy to miss something.

None of this has been helped by my children’s summer timetable.  For the last few weeks, they have been going to bed at Stupid O’Clock.  It is often 11pm before I get them settled, a little late for turning on the computer to play catch-up with work.  Regardless of sleep time, my boy has stuck to his 6.45am wake time – except the GLORIOUS Saturday when he slept until 8am.  Okay, he was lying on my arm which was looking a little purple, but hey ! Any exhausted parent would sacrifice a
limb for a lie on.

I was delighted to see some dark, dull evenings recently, so that I could coax them to bed a little bit earlier.  It seemed that I was wishing the summer away, before it had even started.  My window boxes echo my sentiments, having gone by their best and looking decidedly, what can only be described as ‘autumnal’.

At 4.20pm today, I set myself a target – to have cleaned my office and to be out the door at 5pm.  I had hoped to spend the whole day doing an overhaul, but in hindsight, 40 minutes meant that I was ruthless.  The important looking glossy reports that I never read, the invitations to national events on pretty paper that I didn’t attend, the odd shaped envelope that I was waiting to find a use for, all went in the bin.  Ruthless I was.  I found three coat hangers, e2 in change, buttons, a pot scrub, a toilet roll, some reports that had gone astray and 4 bottles of red wine.  I did save one or two really beautiful images to include in my personal stash of ‘inspirational items’.  I was assured that the artworks currently stored in my office would be moved very soon, the random submissions for Per Cent for Art schemes collected and that very soon that my office would no longer be a similar health and safety risk to asbestos roofing.  I might even be able to host meetings there sometime soon.  Eimear, you would be proud of me.

One of those things that I got brought in on through my work is the centenary commemoration of the 1916 Rising next year.  Such projects can allow you to reinvent yourself and to learn something new.  However, I imagine that I am not alone in saying that I am jaded by the 1916 commemorations before they have even started.  As a result, I didn’t get to finalise the 2016 arts related commemorative programme today.  I just couldn’t face it.  But it will still be waiting for me when I get back.  Still, I was mightily chuffed to have our Culture Night brochure in the bag.  Thanks Federica !

I am patting my back for being a total genius this year and getting all of the Back to School gear before I took my holidays.  Last year, I seemed to spend some time every single day of my holidays looking for one particular item.  This year, the new term’s school bag is already packed, uniforms folded neatly in waiting.  One of those rare Organised Parents moments for me.

I left the office shortly after 5pm.  I pretty much hopped, skipped and jumped out the door,with the smug feeling that a clear 'inbox' allows.  The relief that I felt was like lancing a boil on your bum (not that I have any personal experience of this, I assure you).  I swore to myself not to check work emails, although I have already checked in twice since I left the office.  It will take me a few days to wind down.  It always does.  I’m looking forward to lie-ins (hopefully with my children following suit), reading newspapers (okay, looking at the fashion/style/lifestyle stuff), blogging, digging holes in my garden, planting stuff, catch ups and of course, celebrating the wedding of my gorgeous step
daughter Zara and Gareth this weekend.  More about that in another blog.  Happy August people !

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