the light in ye olde holiday farmhouse was something else. balm for the photographers soul for sure
A change is as good as a rest as they say. Last week on holiday I got a bit of both.
The night before we left I was bone tired. Packing for the kids took a lot of time and effort, I hate being without something I know we really need once we get there so I try really hard to be organised. I was also attempting to get the house in some sort of order so that we didn't return to complete chaos which is near impossible with 3 kids around.
As I feel asleep that night I remember thinking how much I needed to get away from real life for a little and how much I was expecting from our week away.
The days were busy and exhausting and great fun - as lots of days at home are too - but in the evenings once the cooking and dishes were done it was fantastic to sit down. We watched the first series of Spiral (dark but good but very dark, not for the weak stomached, you have been warned) and I knitted a little bit, and that was all.
Since Baxter was born in early January there haven't been many evenings where Greig and I have sat beside each other doing literally - nothing. When he was tiny (Baxter, not Greig) there was always a good chance one of us was pacing the floor with him or maybe one of the bigger kids would be unwell. The loft conversion started when he was 7 weeks old. We're so pleased we went ahead with it but it wasn't easy going with a new baby, some days the builders were in the house at 7am before I'd even had a cup of tea. Breastfeeding was tricky with people in and out all day long and sometimes the workers were still there after bathtime and I was trying to get Baxter down for the evening. Not to mention the noise, the dust and everything that goes with it.
After the work was done we had the whole second floor of our house to paint which seemed to take forever but we did it in about 4 weeks. All in naptimes and evenings and most nights we finished at 10pm before slumping in front of the news for half an hour. Everyone moved bedrooms and we now had a playroom to organise, all wonderful problems to have but so much stuff to get sorted. And all while trying to keep up with the business of keeping all the usual balls in the air.
I worked until I was 37 weeks pregnant with Baxter, finishing the week before Christmas. Brodie was taken to hospital with croup during the night of the 23rd of December and I still managed to have everything ready for the big day including breakfast for family and friends. When Baxter was 3 days old and the Midwife called, she raised her eyebrows at the ironing board and pile of ironed clothes and I assured her it wasn't my handiwork - of course it was - I still haven't tracked down the laundry fairy.
Brodie's homework was always done, his uniform always ready, cakes were baked for special school days, sponsor money collected, birthday parties planned, presents bought and wrapped, special days out were taken and I became so focused on keeping everything going smoothly. I think everyone around me barely noticed that I'd just had a baby and that we were in the middle of major building work. I never felt like I could relax because there is always so much I should or could be doing. I felt guilty for even sitting down which is ridiculous.
But my body started going haywire. In the last 6 weeks I've had 3 bouts of tonsillitis - the third bout started half way through our week away - and shingles. My joints ache and I'm so tired after 8 hours sleep I swear I could sleep for 8 more.
I have also really missed spending time time knitting and sewing and plotting and blogging. Remember when I used to have time to make things AND time to take photographs of them and blog it all? I do and it was fun.
I need to find a better balance of stuff. I need to see where I can claw some time back for myself because at the moment it doesn't exist. And if I was reading these words written by someone else I know I would probably be less than sympathetic because I really believe you have to take care of yourself before you can really take care of others. And I'm a grown up and shouldn't be martyring myself because that's just a bit pathetic really.
I don't believe in perfectionism. Perfectionist is a synonym for Arse. Perfectionists are in my humble opinion usually so focused on being perfect at ONE thing that they generally suck at everything else. Usually they are proper crap at being kind to others and nurturing positive relationships because they are so wrapped up their perfectionism.
I think I may have been veering into wannabe perfectionism with my constant ball juggling. So I'm going to see which balls I can drop and remind myself of the most important bits and I'll get to the rest at some point. Or maybe not. I have to learn to be OK with that because I'm worth it. And just because I can I'm giving myself a long, slow handclap of the supportive variety. I might even stand on the table.