Of course, it’s not surprising. The house is a tip, we’ve had workmen of one kind or other in here almost every day since we’ve been back, which not only means rooms are out of action, but makes it impossible for the sproglet to nap and puts a vast array of exciting looking power tools within his reach if I take my eye off him for a second.
We could only afford a painter for our main sitting room and – after two weeks of the room being dust sheeted up and out of action – he has gone AWOL, never, I suspect to return, leaving the job half finished. We’ve run out of time to find someone else to take over, so our dreams of having just one room that was fully finished and painted before the next baby comes will remain unfulfilled.
To compound all this, I’m also knackered, at nearly eight months pregnant. I suspect looking after a toddler full time, even in a fully functioning, clean, safe and comfortable house, would be exhausting right now.
Any more first world woes to add to the list? Well, yes actually. The husband is working on some major deal at the moment, which means he gets home after 10pm and is also at work all weekend. So, no chance of house progression in any way at all until the deal is finished. Harumph.
As a result, I’ve turned into someone I dislike. Grumpy, short-tempered, permanently stressed out and worried because of all the things I want to get done, but can’t get done, either due to a sproglet in attendance or because my gigantic body runs out of energy within a few minutes of standing up.
I cast my eyes around a room noticing all the things I could be sorting out if only I had some time and energy: bare plaster walls, untreated wood skirting boards, light switches and plug sockets dangling a few inches clear of the wall. And I feel completely fed up. I can’t concentrate on playing trains with the sproglet because I’m making a gigantic to do list in my head. And then panicking because there is nobody to do the to do list.
So, rather than continue in this way, worrying myself into a gigantic hole which makes me thoroughly unpleasant for anyone to spend time with, I am going to try and force myself to think small and to appreciate the improvements that are already there.
45 minutes while the sproglet naps? Great, I won’t try and paint the kitchen (like I did yesterday) and then get frustrated when he wakes up early. Instead, I’ll focus on cleaning a single fireplace to remove all the grime and building dust. And then I’ll sit back, admire the sparkling fireplace, put my feet up and have a cup of tea.
And when I look at the sproglet’s bare plaster walls (in the photo above) I won’t stress about whether the damp patch on the ceiling is drying out or the lack of paint on the walls or the unoiled wood floor. I’ll think how nice the chair looks sitting in the corner.
It’s not a way of existing that comes naturally to me, focusing on the small finished thing, instead of tackling the gigantic list of unfinished jobs, but I’m going to give it my best shot… Wish me luck for the next six weeks!
And hey, after the new baby comes, I’ll be so sleep deprived I won’t notice any of my surroundings anyway.
- I’ve written quite a bit about the house recently, for the obvious reason it’s very much on my mind. Catch up on the progress in these posts: a new house, a study in wallpaper, sorting and organising and home.