Ruth's blog: Losing My Balance
The last blog I wrote was about the summer holidays (link) and I am writing this in early December with chocolate advent calendars already started.
I am sure that like many of you juggling work, family and other responsibilities and social lives, planning and organisation is a big part of how we get through all (most? some??) of what we try and squeeze in. These last 3 months have not always gone to plan and it has made me realise how much I pin my mental stability to plans as they were made, version 1, with no updates.
Here is an example of a change I should have been quicker to realise was a good thing. Our children’s school has a double week for half term in October, with less time off at Easter. Autumn being a very busy work time for us, we had planned a couple of days off separately with the children and some days at an activity club = minimum use of annual leave. Then plans started being mooted for a family break together with my parents and sister, brother in law and niece. What a great idea – except then I had to work out – what days we could do, how much leave we each had left, where we could go that was not too far for anyone, what size house we needed – I felt like the rug had been pulled from underneath me and I was so stressed by it. How ungrateful is that…..and what happened in the end? We found a great place – we will go back! The cousins had a great time altogether, especially playing hide and seek, and the grown ups had a pretty good time together too! Lesson learnt for me?
Some changes have been less welcome, eg. having a week off work unwell with the worst hugest mega-cold I have possibly ever had. My work was all waiting for me when I got back, with a week less to do it in. 3 weeks on I am still not better and seem to have caught something new on top. Sigh.
A close family member has also required a run of hospital treatment: a detailed schedule was produced and various things in their diaries rearranged. Except then it got pushed back 2 weeks: upside – they could still have an alcoholic drink on their birthday so I squeezed in a brief weekend with them including a special family meal (grown ups only – what a treat!). The downside – treatment now extends over Christmas; there is nothing like a hospital appointment on Boxing Day to ruin the festive mood. And this one has really made me sad – we had not yet finalised our Christmas plans but I am sure it did not feature “this” in proposed Plan A.
I can’t work out if I am always this rigid – maybe? But this autumn has felt like “that” Jamiroquai video where the floor and furniture move of their own accord.
I wish you all a lovely festive break, with whatever traditions and experiences you enjoy. I’m hoping for a more stable and less snotty start to 2024.
Ruth works 4.5 days per week in a central London accounting & tax firm. She lives in South West London with her husband, two children aged 7 and 5 and a tank of tropical fish.