Is there actually anything more annoying than all of those little things that build up in your head that you have to do? The list starts off small and you push them to the side of your head, promising yourself that you will get to them eventually. Then along comes a few more things. Before you know it you are snowed under, stressed to bits, and you have no idea where to start.
I felt a bit like that last week. It's the first week where I found it really difficult to find a balance between work and home. We've developed a decent little routine when it comes to mornings and evenings in the house on work days. It's been working really well for the most part. For some unexplained reason last week just seemed to get on top of me a little bit more. Work was that bit busier, I was that bit more tired, and it certainly didn't help that Peter was in an accident while cycling home from work. He's OK now, thankfully, but my God could it have been a whole lot worse. We both got a fright. Then at the weekend he damaged his knee. We were out for a walk and he kicked a football and heard something pop. We had to make our way home and he hobbled in the door in agony. He did something similar to the same knee 8 weeks ago and it was only starting to feel better. The poor guy had a fairly crappy week to say the least.
So my Mammy duties have pretty much doubled between last week and this week. Little things like Peter putting Billy to bed, and sharing the night-wakings. I have a really genuine respect for women and men who single-parent. It's exhausting.
In the midst of all of this my mind was beginning to race with all of these little things that were building up. I was finding it hard enough to juggle work and my home/mammy/domestic duties and therefore the extra things just inevitably started to build up. I am absolutely zero use at not doing things though. I hate having things hanging over me and I'm a do-it-yesterday type of person. Totally out of my comfort zone to say the least.
Those of you who have been following my blog for a while will know that I suffer with anxiety. I have it fairly under control most of the time but this would be a prime example of a time where it starts to rear it's ugly head. I could feel myself losing control and I needed to get my two feet firmly back on the ground, check in with myself, and well... get shit done.
That is genuinely the most profound way of dealing with that type of stress. Actually doing what needs to be done. It's hard to see it at the time because the actual stress of all of these little tasks clouds the fact that you need to just start doing them for them to disappear.
Before things got the better of me I decided to be pro-active. Peter took Monday off work and we decided to use it as our day to get shit done. Apologies for my profanities, but I don't think any other phrase could capture the enthusiasm. I was absolutely buzzing to just get some of these things out of the way. I knew I would feel tonnes better.
The main things that I needed to sort were actually fairly important. Firstly, Billy's vaccinations. His 13 month vaccinations were due and yet I found it difficult to find a day where someone could bring us on one of my days off. I usually get the bus (or buses) everywhere but I'm always a bit wary of getting public transport in this type of situation, just in case Billy got upset after the injections or had some sort of reaction. If I drove it would make life much easier as the clinic is only a 10-15 minute drive from our house, rather than a 3 hour round-trip on the bus. No big deal really, but when you have nap times to contend with it really complicates matters like this. This brings me nicely to number two on my list of shit that needed doing. Learning how to effing drive. I am twenty bloody five and I don't know how to drive. It never really bothered me before but having a baby totally changed my perspective on this one. We love getting out and about and the bus is handy most of the time, but there are those times where you get caught in the rain, or you are on a crowded bus with a grumpy teething baby, and it's as clear as day that driving would make life much easier. I also love attending the Cuidiu coffee mornings on Fridays but can only go to the ones that are in my area or are easy to access by bus. If I drove I could go to most of them. It would be a simple case of hopping in to the car and I'd be on my way.
Not to mention the fact that Peter cycles to work so the car is actually sitting in the drive teasing me. So yes - driving is suddenly important to me. I did the theory test in January and it's taken me 6 months to get the application sent off. Hear me out though. They really don't make it easy. There is a fair bit of running around to be done between the mandatory eye test, downloading and completing forms, and then showing up at the centre and waiting for what feels like 15 hours for them to call your number. Well it's done now. In 10 working days I will be the proud owner of a provisional driving license and I can start lessons. And by start lessons I actually mean pass out with nerves because I am terrified.
I write this on the other side of the "niggly things". A really busy day was had and poor Billy spent most of the day in and out of the carseat but it just had to be done (Nana made up for it by letting him run (crawl) wild in Marley Park for hours today). We brought Billy for his vaccinations in the morning (he was a champ and just had a little cry. Yay for no more vaccinations for a couple of years) and then I had my eye test in the Optometrist right beside the clinic. Turns out it was free and covered under my PRSI. It's the little victories, right? We even managed to fit in a little brunch after this which was delightfully yummy. Next stop, home for Billy's nap. He was asleep by the time we got home and peacefully transferred to his cot without waking. Peter then went off for some physio for his sore knee and I pretended to myself that I was going to sit down and read a book and instead spent two hours cooking and cleaning. I was delighted with myself though.
As soon as Peter got back we all headed off to the NDLS centre to apply for my drivers license. Another stroke of luck when I ended up being the very last person to be seen that day. We only had to wait for about 40 minutes which is significantly better than we had initially thought. It was then time to head home for dinner. I spent the rest of the evening sorting out the house and organising/packing for the work week for myself and Billy. By the time I sat down it was 9pm and I totally forgot about the few things I had to iron. Ironing done and I was only fit for one place. I did my usual trick of falling asleep while watching Snapchat stories. Rock star right here.
And then it was Tuesday. Time for another week of work and busy times. I feel so so delighted with yesterday though. My mind has been totally cleared away and I can now fill it with various other things to stress about. There is room now. I joke. Kind of...
So watch out everyone, Tracey is going to be on the roads soon. It means I can do more of this...
A little Woody swimsuit - would you actually be able?