If you’ve ever had some time off work – and that doesn’t include being ill or having children – you’ll know that you somehow find SO. MUCH. TO. DO. You’re not quite sure how you ever managed all those other tasks AND do a day job.
I must caveat this article by saying that these are all First World Problems and I do actually count myself incredibly fortunate that I’m in a position to be able to sit here and write this.
After almost nine years at my last company I was made redundant and decided to take a couple of months out before applying for something new. My boyfriend was (and still is) having an incredibly stressful and busy time with his business, often doing 15-hour days. So, I would run the house, make sure it was clean and tidy and there was food on the table for when he got in from work. That would keep me out of mischief and ensure that I felt useful even while I wasn’t ‘bringing in a crust’, I thought to myself. The rest of the time I would relish my break from the Rat Race, get my jobs done but also have plenty of time for painting furniture and watching Netflix.
However. I appear to have found myself in a place where I have to write a list every day of things that need doing. Because it always feels like there’s a thousand of them!
I get up. Ok, not at 7am but often by 8 or 9am. And it begins.
The laundry bin is full. The nature of my BF’s work is that his clothes do need washing after one wear, so largely it’s his stuff and the bin doesn’t stay empty for more than 10 minutes. I put the wash on. Then I remember the dishwasher needs emptying. I notice the kitchen floor needs sweeping and actually, the lounge could do with a hoover even though I only did it a couple of days ago. There’s a pile of mail to sort, including some important looking items for the previous tenant, which I should really forward on even though we’ve been in the house for 10 months. (Not annoying in the slightest).
As you know, painting is my passion and something I am trying to build into a small business, so I endeavour to do some every day. But in the meantime, I remember that I still haven’t made my dentist appointment, or posted the items I’ve just sold on ebay, or phoned my mum, who I try to speak to at least every other day.
We’re currently in the process of buying a house and hope to be in within the next four or five weeks. Since moving into our current home we have a lot of stuff (as you do when you join forces) and I’m really trying to declutter; selling bits that might fetch a bob or two, donating to charity etc. That, in itself, is never-ending. I’m someone who hates throwing things away when they could be of use to someone, which means putting a notice up in the supermarket or maybe posting on Facebook, in the hope the superfluous duvet or pile of old picture frames can be used elsewhere, rather than ending up in landfill.
While all this is going through my mind, the wash is over and needs putting out. I still haven’t made it out of the house to get the milk or go to the gym (neither of which is any great tragedy, I grant you) because I’ve realised that I’ve missed my friend’s birthday and should at least send her a quick text. I also spot the gas bill which needs paying, the fireplace which needs sweeping and the window that’s got something lovely on it, gifted by a bird.
As I sit down with my laptop to get the addresses for those ebay parcels, I get distracted by my emails and realise some friends are waiting on me for a date so we can meet up. There’s a couple of new job alerts that grab my attention and an interesting article someone has shared on Facebook. In and amongst all this I do like to keep an eye on the news and wonder what the weather holds for the coming days. I also need to send a proof of ID and address to the people managing the purchase of our new property.
Closing my laptop becomes almost painful, but there are other things I should get done before reading the news and writing emails.
Because I also need to:
Collect a table I’ve bought from a local charity shop
Put the recycling out for collection the following day
Write an article for my website
Book a restaurant for the BF’s birthday
Hire a car for an upcoming trip to Dublin
Clean the fridge
Get some quotes for the renewal on my car insurance
Mend a drawer
Decide what’s for dinner
Put another wash on.
By 7pm it’s time for Emmerdale and although I haven’t been out to ‘work’ surely, SURELY I deserve a glass of wine.
See what I did find time to paint here