There is a saying that I have heard, if you want something doing, then give it to a busy person. Before we had Joshua and I worked full time, I used to think that I was busy, then we had a baby, and after 6 months maternity leave, I went back to work for 3 days a week, then I felt really busy. When Joshua was 4, he went to school, and I began to work four days a week, but they were shorter days as I would collect him from our local primary school, so I felt busy then. Joshua moved to a special school and he was transported by taxi, so I increased my working hours, but always kept my Fridays off. In 2011 Joshua moved to his current special school, so he was still transported by taxi, and I started to get involved more in school by becoming a School Governor, volunteering in class on my Fridays off and three years ago, I started to run a coffee morning for parents on the last Friday of every month and I felt busy then, as I was virtually working full time.
I have not worked or volunteered in class on Fridays for a while now, but I am a member of a committee that holds its meetings on some of my days off at school and the Coffee mornings are still thriving, but most Fridays I am able to choose how to spend them, whether it is with haircuts or meeting friends for lunch, that is still my day of rest, while Joshua is at school. Then almost 4 weeks ago, my Mum was admitted into hospital over two hours away from home, and I had to work out how I could make regular hospital visits. Since then, I have been over visiting Mum a couple of times a week, sometimes with overnight stays, so that I can make visits on consecutive days. So now I know what busy really is, when I have been juggling home, Joshua, hospital , school and work, and I realise that I was not actually very busy before this time as my life has expanded to find time for this new, but hopefully short-term, commitment
So, yesterday , while Joshua was at respite, we took time out to do nothing! We visited a spa for three hours in the afternoon, with my sister and niece, and it was blissful. As soon as we arrived, we sat in the outside jacuzzi, surrounded by stunning scenery, watching the neighbouring sheep and horses in the fields and the rhythmic sound of wind turbines whirring on the hills behind us. It was a perfect antidote to how life has become recently and I did not want to get out. I tried a sauna, steam room and foot spa and then went to the relaxation room where I promptly fell alseep on a giant beanbag for a siesta. When I woke – no idea how long I was sleeping for as there were no clocks in the spa – I returned to my favourite location in the hot tub. There were no mobile phones allowed and so I was not expecting a phone call from respite or a text update from Mum, it was just total relaxation and it was very much needed and appreciated.
I keep being told by a range of people, that if I am to take care of Mum and Joshua, that I need to primarily, take care of myself. Certainly yesterday, I put that into practice and I finally realised what these well-intentioned people were talking about. While I will not visit spas every week, I have committed to make some time for myself in my hectic schedule, at least until things settle down.