I was awake nice and early this morning. Too early. I lay awake at 4 am thinking… How will I be able to run if I don’t get more sleep? How will I get through the day? But of course, sleep never happens when we most want it. So I got up this morning, a Monday morning, and I didn’t experience that wonderful Monday morning feeling I was telling you about a couple of weeks ago.
Maybe you came to my blog looking for an inspiring story. And here I am telling a tired morning story. Sometimes bloggers’ lives can seem perfect. Unschooling is always a joy. We’ve got it all worked out. But not today… Today is not a perfect day. Today I am tired and all my enthusiasm has seeped away. I didn’t jump out of bed this morning eager to learn and share with my girls.
By 6.15 am I was finally ready to go back to sleep, but it was too late. Andy urged me out of bed.
“You’d better get up if you’re going for a run.”
“It’s raining,” I assured my husband. “I can hear it pouring down. Just take a look out the window. We can’t run in this weather.”
“It’s not raining,” smiled Andy. “Get up!” He’s usually a very kind husband.
So the girls and I headed down to the park for our usual run even though I hadn’t had the usual amount of sleep. Actually the run wasn’t too bad. I didn’t break any records and went so slowly I was in danger of stopping, but I ran.
Imogen and Gemma-Rose wanted to run two more laps than the rest of us, so we left them at the bush tracks and went home in search of breakfast and showers. A long time later, the girls hadn’t returned and I had to send Sophie back to the park to see if they were okay.
“What were you doing?” I asked when they finally appeared.
“We ran some extra laps. We ran 15 laps. That’s 9 K.”
Now I should have said something encouraging such as “Wow! That’s a long way. You must feel good.” Instead I said, “You told me you were only going to run two more laps. You should have been home a long time ago. What about the morning jobs?”
I listened to myself. I recognised the signs. I was tired, and I knew it wouldn’t be long before I was both tired and cranky.
The girls hurried to catch up with their jobs, but a short while later, someone dropped an empty glass jam jar on the floor. The girls were silent. They looked at me warily. The tension was increasing. We cleaned up the mess but five minutes later, another jam jar hit the tiles. Someone ran for the broom again. It was at that point I breathed deeply, and decided I needed to take action, otherwise today was going to be a total disaster.
So what did I do? I threw aside all those wonderful ideas I was going to share with the girls, and made the decision to do nothing more taxing than reading aloud. I find reading aloud good when I am tried. I can disappear into another world and forget all about myself.
So I read and then the girls wanted to read to me. They love sitting in the reader’s chair. Then I encouraged them to do something that didn’t need my help. I’m so glad they’re unschoolers and used to taking the lead. They practised the piano and then explored some online websites, played some games… And what did I do? I answered some emails. Oh yes, I did something else… I will admit it. I also visited FaceBook a few times.
I think about how I wasted time online this morning, time I could have spent with the girls. And I am not sorry in the least. I know that Facebook saved my children from having to endure an out-of-sorts mother. All those friends out there … I enjoyed reading their posts. I forgot about being tired. Facebook has its time and place.
According to my records book, it hasn’t been the greatest of days. Oh yes, the girls found plenty to do but it wasn’t an exciting learning day. I could get anxious about this, except I know that what we did on October 22nd 2012 isn’t really that important in the grand scheme of things. This day is only one day out of many. It will probably fade from our memories, and certainly no one else will ever know it wasn’t a perfect day.
“Go and rest, Mum,” my children urged, after we’d finished lunch. So that’s what I‘m doing. In days gone by, I might have struggled on making not only myself suffer, but everyone around me. But today, I’m not going to fight this tiredness. I have limits and I recognise that.
You know, I think I’m going to survive this day.
I didn’t get that wonderful Monday morning feeling today. I didn’t awake full of anticipation, eager to begin the week. But that’s okay. There’s always tomorrow… another day. Isn’t that the wonderful thing about life? We can start afresh each day.
I think about tomorrow. A little feeling of anticipation and eagerness is starting to return. If I sleep tonight… I might have enough energy to try out those maths puzzles with Sophie, find a poem in that new library book to strew in front of the girls, help the girls find some McCubbin paintings to add to their jigsaw collection, find the paints they need to finish their salt dough models… We might even take a trip to town. Yes, tomorrow could be good. It could be spectacular. I smile. I’m feeling better already.
PS Do you think that dog looks tired and fed up, with no enthusiasm for the day?