I’m writing pretty late today. This morning’s choice was between a shower and words and it was high time for me to choose a shower. I’ve also chosen not to run this week since Sunday. It doesn’t feel like it’s really been a choice to be honest, but there have been moments where maybe I could have chosen running. I just don’t think that would have been the wise option:
- Monday: I had the time to run, but I’d just run 3 days in a row culminating in nearly 15K on Sunday and my body needed a rest.
- Tuesday: A parent-teacher meeting from which I didn’t get home until 6:30. I could have run then but I hadn’t eaten dinner or had a rest since 8:30 that morning.
- Wednesday: I usually run straight after school on Wednesdays but I’m out of school for the robotics competition on Friday (tomorrow) with seven classes in a row needing cover prepared for them, so I chose to do that work while the kids were still at school rather than when I was exhausted and they were scattered and post-school and cranky. Added bonus: it allowed me to have lunch in the cafe around the corner with G. which was genuinely pleasant and one of the few true breaks that this week has afforded.
- Thursday: Today. Well, tomorrow is Robot Competition Day and everything’s been so frantic at school that I literally only got to finish the half-eaten apple from my morning break after classes finished today. Then there were frantic runs around the city to post office pick-ups and petrol fill-ups and MacDonalds for the kids for dinner because tonight my mental health trumps their physical health (not really, but honestly they’re well within the bounds of infrequent fast-food eating, so I have NO guilt).
I had a half hope yesterday that I might run tonight, but the robot is still not working and while it’s really the students’ project I know I’m going to be taking a look at it later. I’ll give it an hour, no more. Pre-setting my limit is probably the wise choice here.
As for tomorrow – well yeah, I know full well I won’t be running tomorrow.
It’s fine. It’s a once-off special event week. (Yeah … until the next week.)
Anyway I’m feeling a lot of stress and I don’t really feel able to absorb it and get on with my life, so I’m going to go for accepting it. I’m stressed. Lean into the stress. The “lean in” phrase has possibly been done a lot of damage by That Book but maybe it’s appropriate right now. I can’t avoid the particular spike in activity that’s come up this week and there will be other overloaded periods of time in the future. I worry that there will be nothing but overload forever if I don’t pay particular attention, but the truth is stuff really does ebb and flow.
Just lean in for the next couple of days and there will be some downtime after that. And then it will all cluster up again and I’ll feel overwhelmed again. Then I’ll lean into it, accept the feeling that it’s too much, but also accept that life will honestly give me a break again in the future.
Of course, I’m writing this while the house is like a train-wreck around me, my undisciplined children are squawking and jumping and making things even more of a disaster zone while my dinner gets cold in the kitchen and G.’s dinner cools on a shelf as he tends to them and I push on rattling away the inside of my brain here because I need this.
From the outside, and even to myself who I guess is on the inside of myself, it seems like this is just an insipid waste of time. What purpose does all this babbling on even serve? But here’s what I think it does – I think it allows me to have a conversation with myself, to be a friend to myself. Because I would never inflict so much introspective self-obsessed bullshit on someone with whom I was having a real-life conversation (sorry readers!), so I have to do it here with myself; shouting my boring secrets into a virtual oak-bole:
Life is really boring sometimes!
I don’t always feel compassion for my children when they cry!
I find it hard to summon up all the caring I should for a caring profession!
I worry that I’ll never amount to anything other than another boring blip on the flash-screen of humanity!
I’m so scared of death I have to believe in something else because the alternative is unbearable!
I’m so bored of all my problems and I’m scared I’ll never be any better!
Anyway, I’ve delayed dinner just about as long as I can stand it, so I’m out of here!