Hello! I know, it’s been a while – yet again. There’s been a lot going on, I’ve started to write so many blog posts, and never quite finished them! But I’m determined to finish this one.
How are you doing? This pandemic is lasting a long time, isn’t it? I’m trying to keep positive and not think about it too much, but there are days when it all feels a bit overwhelming. I’m just glad that I’ve so much to do that I’m quite distracted from it most of the time.
At the moment I’m at home full-time with Little Man. On top of that I’m working a handful of hours a week from home whilst working on a couple of writing projects too, so it’s a bit full on! Oh, and I also decided to sign up to a five-week music course – not sure what I was thinking! Although, on saying that, I’m really enjoying it. So my previously empty diary is now pretty full – without me even leaving the house.
However, one of the things I’m struggling with is trying to find the balance in all this. Being a full-time stay-at-home-mum is a job in itself (actually, according to something that I read being a parent is the equivalent to two and a half jobs – not much of a surprise!), but then combining it with everything else, plus the fact that we’re in the middle of a global pandemic, makes finding that balance all the more difficult.
Although all the extra things that I’m doing on top of caring for my son seem a bit much, I know that they’re crucial for my wellbeing (and – in terms of work – for my bank balance), so they have to stay. It’s just I’m finding that I have very little time in the week to “do nothing”, to just relax for a while. I know for most of us parents it’s hard to find this anyway, but there are usually the evening times when our little ones are asleep in bed, however this is when I now do much of my work. Little Man is still napping in the day, but I can only get one nap out of him which can be anywhere between one and two hours – usually closer to one. He’s never been great for napping in the day. I always use nap time to work, or do household chores, so it’s a “doing time” rather than a “relaxing time”.
So what to do? After all, I know that this situation is one I’m going to be in for some time to come! Well, I firstly am making sure that myself and Little Man get out for a walk or fresh air of some description every day. We’re so lucky with where we live that there are lots of beautiful places for us to go, last week we went to the forest, the beach, the park, and to a pretty woodland. So, providing the weather doesn’t make it impossible, I’m making sure that we get fresh air and get out in nature.
Secondly I make sure that I do have at least a couple of nights off in the week, to relax and spend time with my husband. So we have Saturday takeaway night, and usually another night in the week when I don’t work. It’s so important that we maintain our relationship too, especially as, when he is home from work, he helps out with the childcare so that I can work.
Then, even though I can’t see them in person, I’m making sure that I regularly keep in touch with my friends. Phone calls and Zoom chats are as good as it gets at the moment, but it’s better than nothing. It’s so important to maintain some sort of life outside of the home, even if you’re limited physically with what you’re allowed to do.
Not stressing about the housework is another thing. I’m finding that, in order to do everything else, housework is coming very much at the bottom of the pile, which I find frustrating, as I like to keep a clean and tidy house. But, I’ve realised that I just have to accept where I am with it, do what I can and as long as Little Man is well looked after then that’s the main thing.
I think that when looking for balance in life there also has to be a degree of acceptance too. After all, if you can accept where you’re at, it’s easier to find a balance.
At least, that’s what works for me.