A Growing Day

It’s not even 3pm and I’ve achieved my day’s work. It’s been one of those days when you see the fruit of ‘growth’. The last six weeks have been hard, at times really, really hard, but I have also been aware that I was learning, growing, achieving..

Well today I decided that if another person told me that if I don’t look after myself, I can’t look after Mum, I’ll swing for them. It’s a very logical thing to say but it doesn’t address the basic issue. How exactly DO you look after yourself? I’m very good at looking after Mum, but I don’t look after me, she does that.

I’ve had a really bad head cold this week and things look bleak when you see them through a veil of industrial strength phlegm. I also haven’t been able to visit her as much as I’d like and when I do, it’s a bit of a covert mission. In, done, out, before the dragon-woman on reception can run after me yelling about ‘bugs’.

So I took my eyes off her and focused on me. What do I need to do to maintain the energy I need over the coming months. I made a list….I LOVE lists. First you have nothing but chaos and the fleeting thought that you must remember to do this and that…when you write them down and prioritize, you have ORDER and a plan.

Yesterday I made a list and wrote “Things to Do: July” on the top of it. Second to the bottom is ‘finish MS and send it to Carolyn’, a position which in no way reflects the importance of finishing the rewrite of ‘The Secret Keeper’ and sending it to my editor at Harper Collins.

Since yesterday I’ve cleaned my bathroom, vacuumed the house, rung and organised a gardener to do a winter makeover of my dying and neglected garden, and several other things on my glorious list. And I have started a plan to look after myself…

How did I look after Mum? I kept her warm. I keep warm, not hot, don’t like the hot, and it is cold enough in the mornings here. Check

I cooked for her, delicious and nutritious food that was good for her. Am I doing that for myself? No, not at all. I am eating what I like and what is fast. I happen to like pasta and Thai much more than I like vegetables. But it is time I started cooking…so I am going to thaw out the meat in the deep freeze and cook it with veges into one person servings and refreeze it. Then I can take it out in the morning and it will be ready to heat by night time! Brilliant. And I am going to start to thaw out the ten tonne of frozen fruit, container by container, so I can have porridge and fruit for breakfast.

I entertained her. Hhmmm. TV is good entertainment and writing is necessary and I do love it. What I’d really like to do is join Toastmasters. I love making speeches and there is a chapter right here in Cambridge…perhaps I need to get out more.

So it’s been a day of moving on, moving up to taking care of myself, using my time to make myself stronger. Who knows, I might even treat myself to a massage one of these days. You’ll know I’m serious about that when it appears on my list.

 

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