Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Things I miss...

Chinese Steamboat last night - a roaring success!

I've been working full time for just over a year now; oh what a year it's been.  Two different schools.  Two different year levels...three actually because I currently teach a composite.  Lots of highs, lots of hard days.  Lots of learning how to do what I've been trained to do.

I think that no matter what you do for a job and no matter how much you love it and jump out of bed in the morning to get into it, there are things about what you do that aren't so fun or exciting.  In the last three weeks of last term I keeled over and crashed a bit before I really could.  I went on school camp one week, got sick the next, recovered and pushed hard to get all those end-of-term assessment tasks completed.  I have felt blanketed by heavy exhaustion.  And these things lead to some self-reflection about the things I miss, because I work full time.  Things like:

  1. Balance.  This is just the season I'm in, with a new career; one that consumes every waking moment, plus many of the non-waking ones.  Almost every thought I have is about something I haven't done, something I need to do, someone I need to follow up, finding some way to reach that kid who has that problem with that thing....It means many nights are spent curled up on the couch with my computer, never fully relaxing.
  2. Time with friends.  I dearly miss having the space to catch up with a friend during the week.  I go many, many days/weeks without having that input.  Whilst my colleagues do fill this void, it is often when rushing between this thing and the next thing.  Just not quite the same.
  3. Cooking.  I'd love to feel like I had the mental wherewithal to cook a meal at the end of the day.  At the moment the thought of making dinner causes me to lose the will to live.  And I miss those slow food meals that take time and attention....like handmade pasta or gnocchi.  Or even lasagna!  And having people over for a meal?  Oh my goodness, that feels like climbing Mt Everest!!!
  4. Time for self-care.  One thing I need to do and have been unable to figure a way forward with, is things like exercise.  My work days are long so finding time to walk, even, seems impossible.  Especially through the winter when the only time I'm at home is when its dark.  But I also don't seem to manage to get to things like doctors appointments, or taking my kids to doctors appointments, or orthodontists, or optometrists.  
The antidote?  Do all some of the things I've been missing.  As I type (Monday afternoon), we're preparing to have a Chinese steamboat with a friend from work, and her two adult children.  We share a surname, although we are completely unrelated.  Our children have adopted one another as 'cousins' and I'm sure our evening will be filled with laughter, because we all love a good laugh....and all these kids are just very funny!  Perhaps this is the antidote to the things I miss and the feeling of overwhelming and exhaustion that crouches just behind the door.

I have two pots of stock simmering delightfully.  Miss Mischief will make a mountain of wontons.  We'll lay everything out and take our friends to China, via our dinner table.  Slow food.  Good company.  Yes, I think this may just be what the doctor ordered!  So.  A little chopping now and plenty of fun later.

Edited to add:  We had a great night (see photo above!).  A fun meal, lots of laughter and chatter and shared memories with people we adore.  So good.
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4 comments:

Min Write of the Middle said...

Hi Tracey - OMG that chinese steamboat looks delicious. It's so hard when you're working full time and have kids to keep up with everything, including making some time for yourself. If you can try and do one thing per week (meet a friend, go out for dinner or get your hair done) you're doing well! :-)

Deborah said...

I left full-time employment and took a redundancy almost exactly four years ago. I took a little time off but am single and needed to earn an income.

This year finally I found a part-time job that pays pretty well and is 5 days a fortnight. I realise it's perfect.

Recently a full-time position came up which paid okay and would have been interesting, but... I needed to remind myself that - while the money would have been great - I have all of that balance you mention, so I'm really really lucky!

Renee Wilson said...

It really is hard to keep on top of everything when you work full time, have a family to care for etc etc. It sounds like you're doing an amazing job though. I hope you can find the right balance to keep you feeling happy. #teamIBOT

Lisa Berson said...

That food looks amazing. Hope you take care of yourself and enjoy your night with friends.x