Surviving Summer (E20)

So. Last day of the summer holidays and I'm breathing a very loud thank fuck as we enter back into the safe and predictable routine of life....
Ha! If only. Nothing is ever predictable. And things most definitely aren't safe with the B-boy around. Hats off to you Cath Kidston types who can juggle homemade playdough and tandem breastfeeding in a beautifully clean vegan organic home while still looking like you just stepped off the pages of the Joules brochure. Good for you.
But I'll admit. I dragged my kids through the holidays and survived by the skin of my teeth. There was mess. And dirt. And chaos. And much beige processed shit which somehow passes as food. My general motto in life is fuck it, feet first and figure it out-much to the annoyance of the planners in my family. At this point in time, the Teen Queen is heading back tomorrow in last year's too-small shirts thanks to my epic organisational skills. We also noticed the last time we'd signed her school diary was September. 2016. Oops. But in amidst the frustrated shouting, the catfighting, the exasperated disorganisation and last-minute-dot-com-ness there's also love. At the risk of going all Insta-inspiration on you, I really do think love wins out. Despite the frankly unfair madness we have to wade through every day, my kids know beyond doubt they are loved. And that's sadly so much more than so many.
By this point in the holidays, I'm entirely exhausted. Looking after B for prolonged periods is a tough physical slog- chasing after him as he tries to faceplant random ladies' crotches, or grabbing him before his water obsession leads him into Poole Park lake. When he has a wailing flailing meltdown and I have no other option but to remove him from wherever we are, that shit is physically demanding. He's ten now, and albeit small for his age, still pretty damn strong in a fight-or-flight episode, which occur regularly and at random. I'm always achey by the end of summer, but this year it notched up a gear, and it got me thinking. What if there comes a point where I literally CAN'T? Pretty scary stuff. I can usually mind over matter, but what if my body just isn't strong enough? And honestly, I have no idea. It's not great, especially when you're me, to realise there might be some things that are beyond even your bedded in stubbornness.
On the upside, an incredible friend treated me to a Lush massage specifically for achey breaky (read old and verging on decrepid) bodies. I am so much looking forward to that. And carrying on with the upsides, I just spent an incredible weekend in the woods with some great mates at a festival. It's become a bit of a tradition, and is always the end weekend of the summer holidays- perfectly placed for a yes-I-fuckin'-survived celebration. The music was amazing, the memory making even more so. This was a definite shiny bit in the dimly lit dirt road we find ourselves on. Three full days when the only person I had to think about was me. And the biggest decision I had to make was which beer to get pissed on... can you even imagine?! It was fantastic, well needed, and a great escape for a little while. If anyone fancies starting up a self-sufficient festival community, I'm there...
So, friends, we made it. I'm bedraggled and a little bit broken, but I survived. While others may be kissing fond farewells to their beloved summer break, I'll be middle-fingering it all the way, before heading to the pub for a celebratory pint or five.


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