I have a confession to make. Today, right after I put Penny to sleep for her arvo nap, hung out my third load of washing, swept up the crumbs from lunch, wiped the bench down, did the dishes, took the rubbish out, filled out the re-enrollment form for daycare, put a massive pile of barbies away and tidied up the pencils and texta’s, I boiled the kettle, made a cup of tea, sat down and read a book. Yep, shocking I know! And there I sat, for a good 30 minutes, out on the porch, in the sunshine and I just breathed…I took some me time.
Now, for those of you that know me personally, you know that I don’t sit down very often (during the day that is, night time, well that’s a different story… I froth at the mouth come 6:55pm, hanging for my comfy spot in the middle of our couch, unless I have washing to fold that is, and then it’s to the floor I go!)
Even when I have friends over I am that busy friend who does jobs whilst chatting instead of just relaxing on the couch to have a chat! I put the dishes away, tidy up and even hang out washing while they are here… (geez, on reflection it’s actually surprising I even have friends really isn’t it!?)
So, when the opportunity presented itself this afternoon to sit, relax and indulge in some me time, I took it. Reluctantly at first, but I soon realised just how much I needed that 30 minutes of deck chair bliss which got me thinking…when was the last time I actually did this? Sadly, I seriously think it was probably six months ago!
See, the thing is, I can’t relax unless all the chores are done and everything is clean tidy and in order. I try to put the dishes out of my mind, I try to ignore the overflowing bin, the washing flapping dry on the line, the toys that are no longer being played with strewn about every room in the house, the bed that needs to be made….but I just can’t. I can’t get the unfinished business out of my mind and I can’t rest until it’s done or at least started.
I often fantasize about being that kind of care free mum who plays or reads with their kids for hours, despite the chores upon chores that need doing throughout the house. Despite the chaos that has tornadoed through the living room, the bits and pieces of Kinder Surprise toys, dominoes, UNO cards, Shopkins, grated cheese and dried porridge smeared on the bench.
But that’s not me. no matter how hard I try, I cannot ignore what needs to be done around the house when I am home.
If I am home, I will not stop until it’s all done and some kind of order is restored to my house (which lets be honest is never!). Even when I do try and sit down with the kids (which I know is above all the most important thing in the world and I know I will look back and wish I had done it more often) I think about what else needs to be done and then I find myself rushing them. I tap my foot and I feel anxious because I feel like I am wasting time. But deep down I know I’m not. I know I’m doing the most important thing a mum can do which is spending quality time with my children, I know that…..but that doesn’t help me relax and be in the moment.
You see my mind just keeps on tick tick ticking….It makes me think that if I stop here for an hour then I’m going to be up later tonight cleaning it all or worse, I won’t get time tonight to finish everything and then I won’t sleep properly thinking about it and it will pile up and up and up until I’m suffocating in a pit of mess and filth and chaos.
I will lose control and then I’ll snap, falling to the floor amongst the heap of dirty unwashed knickers and banana peels that missed the bin and dead plants that didn’t get watered, mould in the bathroom basin calling me, pages of paper bills that didn’t get paid and barbies (those damn barbies) that didn’t get packed away into their box.
OK, so you’re probably reading this right now thinking “Wow…this woman needs therapy!” And you’re probably right! I probably do need therapy! I probably am borderline suffering from OCD! But I can’t help it. It’s just the way it is, always has been and always will be (unless I get intensive therapy, perhaps!).
I only relax at home (and I mean fully relax) when I’m satisfied that the house is clean and tidy and that I have done all that I could do to make the day as productive as possible (oh and if I’ve had a couple of wines, but that’s another blog altogether).
And so….back to the porch, where I sat today, the blackbirds rustling in the leaves, a gentle breeze blowing across my face, butterflies dancing above the pool and sunshine kissing my cheeks. Back to the porch, where I sat, and I relaxed because I had nothing to do but…relax.
It felt weird but it was awesome… I loved every minute of it…I even started to doze off a little until….ding ding ding…Arrgghh! The distant ringing of the school bell! Crap! Lucky I live close to the school or poor Bella and her friend who I was also picking up would have been waiting for a hell of a long time!! #snappedbacktoreality