Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunday Sunday

I collapsed into bed at midnight last night having driven back from Murwillumbah (3 1/2 hours there, 3 1/2 hours back...) and slept for a solid 8 hours, woke briefly and then slept again until my darling husband brought in a cup of tea at 11:15am. Bliss! But it's been one of those funny days that always makes me feel a bit gloomy.

Things I've done today: emptied and repacked the dishwasher, fed the dog, given the dog its medicine, walked the dog, cleared up dog poo, done two lots of washing and some ironing, tidied up the house, brought in the washing, emptied the airers and put everyone's clothes away, cooked dinner, put away all the debris from yesterday (I took overnight stuff with me just in case I was too tired to drive home), took my darling daughter to the last day of the Coffs Harbour Show, and introduced her to the delights of crosswords ("Mummy, what's another word for 'blemish', 21 across, 4 letters?").

Among the things I have not done today: any of the stuff on my desk (i.e. end of quarter accounts), whisked up a fantastic print, achieved world peace and an end to the military regime in Burma, read the silly lightweight thoroughly unintellectual novel I picked out at the library last week, or cleared off any of the items on my to-do list.

This translates into more household-y type activities than I would wish for and not much time for myself. It also turns me into 'Churlish Housewife', a role I'm perfecting after several years of practice. I have ignored, of course, the fact that my dearest hubby took over everything yesterday so that I could go to my print show, facilitated me having a HUGE lie-in this morning, made me tea AND fresh coffee later on, and also complemented me on my cooking, despite being in the middle of a period of frantic activity with his work and grappling with enormous technical problems with his usual great good humour.

In my defence, I humbly offer that it isn't as bad as it could have been (I didn't yell at anyone!). These days I try to limit my to-do list over the weekend and confine it to half-a-dozen things that really do need to be done, while programming in some entertainment for everyone. So really that I achieved that: I went up to the print show and had a great day out, and I had fun with my daughter at the Coffs Harbour Show today, and the rest of it is the stuff that keeps families going; it just wasn't exactly what I wanted to do.

Since sitting down for dinner with a nice glass of red wine and thinking that actually this time I didn't do a bad job with the food I've managed to cajole myself into a slightly more positive frame of mind. I think maybe I've fallen for some of my old tricks

  • As soon as I got a bit down about one thing I came close to spiralling down the 'everything's wrong' slippery-dip which, as I've mentioned before, is very dangerous for me

  • I began to feel as if I hadn't achieved anything

  • I started piling up a mental to-do list about 5 miles long and then began to beat myself up about not achieving any of that, which as we all know is meaningless and a complete waste of time

  • And - this is the big one - the main reason why I even started out on making this mess for myself is that I came back yesterday from this amazing print show feeling unequal to my self-appointed role as an artist: I was intimidated by the talent of those around me and found it hard to place my own work in context with theirs, and plumped for the easy option which is to write myself off as rubbish instead of recognising that my work is good but different

I go round the same silly circles all the time, don't I? But it's getting easier to recognise how I sabotage myself these days, and to see what I could have done this time - and perhaps will manage to do next time - to help myself.

One thing I have found very helpful has been small moments of meditation - perhaps only a couple of minutes - but they help me achieve a more balanced frame of mind. I haven't meditated at all this weekend, which may be one reason why I've been grumpier than I would have liked today. I have learned from that.

Perhaps today has been a better day than I thought it was: I enjoyed going to the show and walking the dog. I didn't waste any of the available fun to be had with either activity by wishing I was somewhere else, and so I didn't rob my daughter of her fun, which I'm ashamed to say I have done on other occasions, so that's a small triumph too. Happiness is... watching my little girl screaming with laughter as she bounces around in a harness on very long elastic bands.


  1. I put myself to sleep last night thinking about all of the embarrassing things I have ever done in my life. I wonder why I so easily slide into something that feels so horribly. I'll have to try to go into the meditative state when that happens again.

    What a wonderful man you are married to.

  2. This is all frighteningly familiar. Except the sentance "I have learned from that."


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