Life has been a bit of a blur recently. It’s fair to say the last month hasn’t been easy.
Some mornings I’m jolted awake by the 3.30am alarm call for work and my head screams don’t get up yet – just one more minute!
The exhaustion of the early starts, the long afternoons entertaining my beautiful but fearsome toddler and the evenings writing have taken their toll. There have been moments when I’ve thought I can’t stretch any further – and then I do.
The car breaks down on the motorway at 4.30am – stretch./ It needs scrapping – stretch./ I have 24 hours to find a new car – stretch./ The new car breaks down on the motorway at 4.30am – stretch./ It’s fixed, yet breaks again on the motorway at 4.30am – stretch./ The toddler gives up sleep – stretch./ A client asks for just one more thing at the last minute – stretch.
And then the elastic snaps.
I have a chest infection at the moment. It’s the miserable jolt I needed.
I can’t go on like this, trying to be Super Woman or Super Mum or Super Whoever. I’ve lost proportion of the things that matter in my life. The reason I’m working up to 70 hours a week. The people I am working this hard for.
So over the last five days, I’ve taken a step back. I’ve drunk in Every. Single. Moment with my chatty girl. We’ve played and laughed and read stories together. I’ve even got the paints out.
I’m determined not to miss out on this time in my daughter’s life. I’m determined to appreciate her and actually enjoy spending time with her, rather than absent-mindedly scattering a few pieces of a jigsaw puzzle on the floor or half listening to her 2 year old jabber as I prepare supper.
And since turning my phone to silent and not checking my emails every second I’ve found a huge release in pressure.
It helps in every area of life; as I give more of myself to Frog, I feel less guilty about leaving her to do a job I love. As I feel less guilty about doing a job I love, I enjoy it more – and do a better job. And so it goes on.
I’m left with moments like these. Moments where my daughter screams with delight and laughter as she has a waterfight with the little boy who lives next door.
Rather than sigh at the thought of chasing her around the garden to wrestle the wet clothes off her, I smile.
It’s moments like these that make getting up at ridiculous o’clock worth it. It’s moments like these that make me happy. It’s moments like these which I’ll take with me when I’m gone.
It’s moments like these that matter.