I haven’t written for a few days. This is what I tell myself. It isn’t an accurate summing up of my writing status. I have been writing, and it hasn’t been the sort of writing that can be uploaded for the world to see. Even there I’ve second-guessed myself. I could upload it. I have chosen not to.
I’ve been writing lists. Many, many lists. Lists of things to do, people to speak to, tasks to be completed and diary entries to make sure I don’t forget to do those things at the right time. I’ll probably be late anyway. I don’t mean to be late. I have a tendency to believe that I can get more done than I can in a day. I am still unsure whether I procrastinate or am fantastically over-optimistic.
I have written a lot of lists. The curse of motherhood or busyness in the so-called modern age results in lists. They make fascinating reading: pay x, wrap present, call the local hall for a birthday party booking, check cash, call y, research z, yadda yadda. It’s what I do to attempt to keep things under control. Control is such a futile pursuit. I cannot control what goes on around me even though I would like that to be so. I cannot even control when I complete all the tasks on my lists – so many of them are dependent on other people. What is in my control is how I respond.
I don’t always choose the best response. I respond impulsively when I could, and maybe should, take a pause, breathe and choose another. How tired I am makes all the difference in the world. You can imagine how challenging this was during the first year of my daughter’s life. An extreme lesson in sleep deprivation. I don’t mean what you expect with a small baby, but what so many of us have to go through. Sleep deprivation where your baby refuses to nap, and where you manage a total of 2-3 hours sleep a night for months. Yes, months. I kid you not. Where if another mother tells you they had an awful night and only had five hours sleep you not only want to scream and tell them they had an amazing night, but you want to physically punch them. Hard. I barely remember those times. I am not proud of how I behaved. And I know that it was sleep that made all the difference to being able to make choices in how I respond.
There we are. An unplanned, unstructured and unedited piece of writing that requires work to become something worthy. Yet it’s my piece for the world today. I have chosen to respond honestly and without edit because life is sometimes too short for over-editing. Go well.