Saturday, 8 November 2008

Eternal juggling

What the hell did I do with my money and time before I had Sproglet? I think I ate out all the time, took cabs, had long wine fuelled phonecalls, compared martinis across hotel bars in London lay in my bed (oh to have a lie-in)read more books, bought products that I didn't need and heels I actually got to wear.

Cut to now. My life has lost all spontaneity, and is an endless rush to and from work, nursery and Sainsburies. I have no money, live in flats, am too exhausted for phone chats and haven't had a martini way back when. I'm not bitter that my life has stopped being about glam restaurants and sexy bars and is now a fraught hour in Pizza Express with a pooey nappy break. My beauty regime is remembering to take off my mascara and shave my pits once a week rather than a cleanse, tone, steam and scrubathon of yester year.

Obviously I wouldn't swop life post Sproglet for life pre - but feck me, I am knackered. Every morning getting out of the house feels like a production in itself -a swirl of teeth brushing, wetting bed hair, cereal across the floor and shoes on beds. I achieve more before 9am these days than I used to in a week.

My mate Hannah rang me last week with overflowing guilt about not being a better friend/being in touch/sending birthday cards etc etc. We made a present amnesty to stop buying gifts for each other's kids as it was becoming a chore rather than a joy and an added stress to our already stressful lives as full time working mothers. Hannah admitted that she felt as if she was failing in all areas - as a friend, mother, wife, colleague, worker, daughter etc etc. Now Hannah to me is simply Wonderwoman. An amazing teacher, brilliant Mother, top friend and the best cook I know. Yet she was beating herself to a pulp. I admitted that recently I have felt the same - like I was just keeping my head above water and sometimes sinking under...

I wake up with lists dashing round my head - buy a birthday card, pay the nursery, buy milk, remember tampax, get scripts, have we run out of raisins, I should facebook Chris about our NY visit, I must call bank about going over my overdraft limit, did I switch off the heating, has Finn brushed his teeth etc etc I never feel like I get on top of anything and am constantly wondering when it will all collapse in a heap. This week was a tough one at work. I got screamed at my a frustrated writer - who vented all their anger at me. Tired, stressed and at the end of my tether I tearfully rang a friend at work - Caroline - who was brilliant and soothing and supportive. Word went round my fellow workers and they all were incredibly protective and helpful the next day - which is so great - because when your head is swimming and you feel kicked when you are down - having people become like a human blanket to you is very comforting indeed.

Anyway, I digress. By Friday I was melted down - ready to curl under a blanket and just watch X factor and read papers and do jack all, all weekend. I had a kid's party to attend today (Sproglet loved it) and one tomorrow that would have involved a 3 hour drive (alone) which I sadly declined. I felt like a crap friend. But I swear I am spent - physically and emotionally - I just need a break. My body craves the comfoting needles and drops from my acupuncturist saint-like woman Mary and about a months sleep. Memo to self - buy some multi-vitamins... I have no idea how some women manage to juggle everything and still look amazing, cook up masterpieces, claim to have sizzling sex lives, have immaculate houses and never forget a birthday. I hate these women!!! I feel like I am spread thinner than lo-fat butter on Victoria Beckham's gluten-free toast on a morning. I need to have a word with myself and work out I can't be all things to all people but somehow I still try.

Thank god I escape to NY this week... for a much needed break. I can't wait to wander in Central Park with a coffee and just breattthhhhhhheeee... I won't have much money, but hell I'll have time - and that sounds pretty damn good to me.

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