So it’s here. Here I am. It’s the start of term and here I sit, alone alone-o.
No work to do. No kids. Nothing but time running through my fingers between drop off at 9-ish and pick up at 3.30ish from now until, well – until half term I guess.
At various moments I have felt a sort of panic, or horror or sadness or something rising up behind my solar plexus, but I try to smooth it down, press it away.
I have wanted my kids to be out having fun with their friends at school and nursery since they were born. I’m crap at entertaining kids and they know it, so when they see me they bellow “Can I watch telly can I have a biscuit??” because they know I will probably say yes. So it’s better for everyone, more fun for them, if they’re off running about with their mates.
I don’t miss them, because I know they’re coming back. And I’m not worried about them because I know they are at lovely places having a lovely time.
And yet, it’s hard not to panic. Because what now? What? Now? I have taken a look at my paid work and decided to call time on doing the sort of journalism I’ve been doing for the last 5 years – sad mummy stuff, endless photoshoots, personal pieces. I don’t want to do it any more. I’ve backed myself into a rather tight corner and the only way out is to set fire to the entire room and stunt roll out of a window. So that’s probably the end of my career in journalism.
So then there I am, staring blankly into the abyss, like Dory – waiting for help to appear out of the gloom to remind me who I am and where it was that I was going before I lost my way and it was… and then… and… then…
I’m not panicking though. I’m really not. I’m not going to get a puppy or any other small creature to take up my time. I’m not going to enrol on a curtain-making course or re-train as a yoga instructor or an aromatherapist. I’m not. I won’t! And I’m making it my mission over the next year not to do any of those things. If you can’t focus on a positive, focus on a not-negative.
Anyway while you’re thinking about it, here are some photos of some lovely Moroccan rugs from Larusi, who has a studio round the corner from my house. She didn’t start importing and selling rugs as a business until she was 40! So there’s hope.