And so, as the sun sets on our two week half term ‘holiday’, and I look to a week of getting stuck back into work next week, the inevitable roundup occurs.
Here we go. It’s been…
Two weeks of hanging out with people.
We hung out with some good ones. Starting out with old friends who’ve known us from those dim and distant lands when we were housemates rather than married with kids. We then stayed with the grandparents and abandoned the kids for a night. On our return we saw Brighton people in parks, for cups of tea and small children chaos. We welcomed some good friends into our road and delighted in introducing them to the Giants Castle in the woods up the road (you’ve really got to experience it for yourself, come stay some time..). We hung out with lovely family to celebrate son1’s birthday and then saw lots of our excellent God family for walks and crazy golf this week. More parks, a long afternoon with the Greatest Showman with son1’s excellent friend from school and his little sister- son2’s future wife (apparently…) and we are at the end of the week. The less said about the long Monday this week where I cried at the boys all day because we ‘had no friends’ the better. Clearly we have friends. Clearly my head gets it wrong sometimes…
Two weeks of sunny autumn days.
OK, not all days were sunny everyday but it has been amazing weather, I’m kind of ok with the clocks going back thing knowing that we’ve had lots of time outside getting some vitamin D on our skin and endorphins in our bodies. I’ve had much joy staring at the pretty autumn leaves and sunsets across The Downs. I’ve also loved getting out running again after a cold. Have I mentioned my addiction to endorphins?
Two weeks of reading books.
The boys love books and we’ve read oodles and oodles over this half term. I’ve enjoyed their new birthday ones, ‘Stuck in the Stone Age’ by The Story Pirates team is a great read (I would happily read it to the end to son1 but son2 won’t let me, so chapter by chapter it is), if you haven’t heard the Story Pirates Podcast then you should. It’s hilarious fun with real stories from small kids brought to life in crazy adventures and song by the Story Pirates. Seriously good. Husbandface is loving reading ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ with son1 and I’m desperate to wrench it off them so I can read it too. Son2 loves any of our growing picture book collection and the 14 books we got home from the library this week. I loved reading him the latest ‘Oi’ book, ‘Oi Platypus’ is a pretty funny addition.
Two weeks of gigs.
I turned 40 this year and part of my celebrations involved booking in three comedy gigs that happened to be around this time. We saw Dara O’Briain, I saw Sarah Millican with a friend and then last night we went to a live recording of the ‘No Such Thing as a Fish’ podcast. I had such a different experience at all of these gigs. Suffice to say Sarah and the No Such Thing people won the day and I felt most me and comfortable in my skin with the audience at No Such Thing. There is a blog post somewhere in how I coped with being out in the evening in each of those settings. I was mightily relived last night to find people who looked as geeky as me and dressed in a similar way, I was beginning to think I was some kind of social freak (that may be true but at least there are others out there). The comfort of being around people who look a bit more like you is an interesting thing to ponder, as is the sense of disconnection I had when surrounded by people who didn’t look like me at all (I’m just not a make up and glittery kind of lady and for a week I felt uncomfortable about that all over again until I was reminded last night that loads of other ladies aren’t either… phew.). Anyway, I have issues, who doesn’t? On with the roundup.
Two weeks of trying to find balance in the force.
I’ve been a bit more aware recently of what affect my monthly cycle has on me. A friend (the lovely Adele over at Beautiful Tribe) recorded her state of being over the course of her’s this last month. It woke me up to the way women’s menstrual cycles affects all of our month, not just the week before our bodies say, hey no baby this month, lets dump out all that unnecessary blood and stuff we created just in case.
I could see clearly my high energy weeks in the last month and then I’ve been battling through lower energy, more irrational thoughts, irritable tearful times in these last couple of weeks. Adele helpfully said some wise words when I had a rant today about the way I seem to have imbibed the idea that because my hormones are involved then my feelings have no value (I think due to years of feeling like I have to hide talking about these things because no-one talks about this massive thing which happens to most women’s bodies each month. Why is no-one talking about it?)
Anyway. She said:
“The premenstrual and menstruating days of our cycles could be thought of as time when we can’t hide as well as can as other times of the month. There are real things being exposed and it’s an incredibly powerful time, a time when women should be able to go away and go into themselves and find answers. As it is, we usually have to keep going in a noisy world.”
I wonder why don’t we acknowledge what is going on with our bodies? Why do we feel the need to push through and pretend everything is normal? Why don’t we go with the ebbs and flows of our energy and listen to what our bodies are telling us? My menstrual cycle affects the way I think about life and the experience of life I have. I want to listen rather than think that for 2 weeks of each month I’m a bit mad and irrational. (Clearly another blog post is coming…)
There you go. The last two weeks from these parts. As I look around I realise we’ve hit November, fireworks, mist, dark nights and more await us before the wonder found in Advent. Into the night we go. See you out there.