First off, apologies for the Americanism that is the title of this blog, I couldn’t come up with anything better! Urban Dictionary defines ‘keeping it real’ as ‘being authentic in every way, staying true to what you believe’
When I started out writing my Best Knickers Always blog I vowed I’d write the truth, the ups and downs, the highs and lows and all the crap in between of real life as a woman in midlife. I would keep it real at all times. I knew that at times it was going to make tough reading and even tougher writing and I would make no apologies for that. If you want frills and fluff then call by at the newsagents on the way home and pick up this month’s copy of Glamour! This is my life, warts and all and it may or may not be representative of the average life of the average midlife woman. I think it’s about time I started work on the book – the real midlife handbook.
Life has been bloody tough this week, in fact I’m not sure I’ve know a period quite like it………….not since depression, daughter’s anorexia diagnosis or explaining to the children that their parents didn’t love each other anymore. God, if I could have spent the week under the duvet crying I would have done. But, of course life goes on and I had people relying on me to perform my roles….
So I’ve been a bit quiet this week on the blog front. You may well not have even noticed (which is fine)! I’ve been giving myself a hard time about it though. I have been overwhelmed by so many things – and feeling rather like the person in the photo above………..not quite sure whether my head is above water or whether I am in fact slowly sinking. I’m sure I’m not the only woman or man to have days, weeks or even months like that………even years.
My week has been like the week that many of us share – a circus juggling act of work, children, housework, shopping, cooking, cleaning etc etc etc……….some days I just don’t want to play this game anymore, especially when sleep doesn’t come easily (resorted to Nytol). For me this is the reality check of being a single parent too – the buck stops absolutely with me. Some days my head is just above water, my feet thrashing around under the water just to keep me from sinking…………and does Mr Ex ever understand that when he’s fighting over reducing maintenance? Does he hell.
So, now with coaching hat on, what have I learned this week that may be of benefit to you in your day to day life?
- lighten up on yourself – you’re the only one beating yourself up.
- no one is really Wonderwoman or Superman (although my eldest comes very close having bagged himself a 1st class degree from Nottingham University – and you know what they say ‘behind every great man is a woman who got him there’!!)………..and every great woman got there herself, naturally!
- Something’s gotta give – we do not live in a show house it is our home and dust and dog hair are part of the package.
- Guilt serves absolutely no purpose in life – unless you were raised a Catholic!
- I’ve learned just how independent and self sufficient my children are.
- Delegate – I don’t have to walk the dog everyday – she is the family dog after all and my kids are old enough to iron their own clothes.
- If the laundry is piling up and the weather is crap and the tumble-dryer is broken put the heating on and as I’m out all day working I won’t see the socks and knickers draped over the radiators!
- Make life as easy for yourself as possible – sometimes standards have to be lowered unless your mission is to become insane.
- Perfection is a myth, it exists in magazines and coffee table stylists books ONLY.
- If you want to make it hard it will be – do something about your attitude in that case.
- Make choices – what was important for me one evening was not the pile of ironing but curling up in my bed with my children crowded around my laptop watching an episode of our favourite TV drama………….Now I know that was absolutely the right choice to set me up energised for the next day.
- I surround myself with people who love and don’t judge me. I’ve got a great friend – younger guy who lives in SA, there’s no emotional attachment and he just kicks me up the arse when it’s needed – he keeps it real for me.
- Know that this crap period will pass. This will be a phase and the sun will come out again.