(I snapped this photo of the purple sky during one of my evening walks.)
This year started with an almighty bang!
So much has happened in the last couple of months… and I haven’t really stepped back to take a breather and review everything.
What’s been happening?
1) Travel. I was in London for 4 weeks. I popped over to Paris too. I was away from my husband and kids for the whole time. I absolutely loved the whole experience of travelling / freedom / exploring / wanderlust / no responsibilities.
For me, it cemented the fact that I’m on the other side of parenting young children. I had my first child at 25, while all my friends were travelling, partying, establishing their careers and enjoying no responsibilities. At the time, a small part of me was sad that I was missing out on all that – but hey, here I am on the other side, travelling, partying, establishing my career and having no responsibilities – haha not really, but kind of!
2) My freelancing business is growing! Work is on the increase. Lots of new projects are rolling in. I’m having lots of pinch-me moments in terms of the kind of projects I’m working on. Things I do right now: I run my blog, I do freelance work as a photographer, a graphic designer, an art director, a content creator and a social media consultant and manager. Phew.
Sounds so pretentious when I say it all like that. I basically sit on my computer all day and make pretty stuff ha!
I’m still working on a part-time basis. And I’m so so grateful for the work-life balance.
3) Birthdays. My children’s birthdays all fall in March & April, so they will all move up a year. I will soon have a 14 year old, a 12 year old and an 8 year old. Yikes!
Basically, I have two kids in high school, one in Year 9, one in Year 7, and one kid in Primary School, Year 3. Yikes!
4) I have mini-teenagers now. However, they are not very typical teenaged boys. You see, they are all really chatty.
Lots of parenting articles and advice columns talk about how to get your teenagers to talk… how teenagers go through a “grunting” stage… how parents can initiate conversations… how parents can talk to teens so that they’ll listen…
Not my boys. OMG I can’t get them to shut up!
My boys are really chatty. As soon as they come home from school, they will fall over themselves to tell me the latest news of the day. I get an hour-by-hour run down on what happened, who said what, who did what, what they think about their teachers, their teaching methods, the subjects at school, about the new kid in class, about upcoming events, what kind of sneaker they should buy, what happened in the latest online game, what kind of job they want in the future, their latest ideas for a fast money making scheme to make them millionaires, what they think about the latest Ed Sheeran song… omg it just goes on and on and freaking on.
I listen. I don’t get too judgemental. I laugh. I roll my eyes at them. I join in with their banter. I mock and tease them. I throw in some pearls of wisdom. Or add my own entertaining story. But most of the time, we just talk shit.
Anyway, I feel it’s a blessing that I get to hear all the crap in their heads! Better than nothing right?
5) School work. In terms of their studies, my kids seem to be doing pretty well. I have backed off all my help and assistance. I let them work out their own time management, due dates, assignments, revision and they seem to be on top of things.
However, I can’t STOP being an Asian parent. I have to BITE my tongue whenever they come home with 19/25 on a test.
Yes yes, you tried your best, but, seriously dude, how hard is 22/25?
And one day, one of my kids said to me – Hey guess what mum? I made a very cool discovery this week. I realised that if I pay *just a little* more attention in class, I can get an A in my tests. Can you believe that? It’s cool. Who’d have thought it’d be so easy?
6) Exercise. I have slowed down significantly in the last few months. I blame my increasing workload. I do a bit of swimming, a bit of yoga, a bit of cycling and a bit of running per week.
Key words here: a bit.
7) Next family holiday. Omg people! This is epic! We’re planning a trip to Central Australia. We’re going to drive to Uluru. Yes we’re driving! Personally, I’d prefer to fly there, but it’s all about the journey right?
It’ll be simply amazing for our family. But there’s so much planning and preparation. And I’m a little tense about it all.
8) Anxiety. Usually I’m pretty stable in terms of my mood swings, emotions, temperament, confidence, self-esteem and overall positive outlook on life. I’m usually a happy and easy going person!
But two/three days in the month, I’m a total wreck. Little things send me into a blind panic. One word, or comment, or news article, or Instagram post from someone will send me into a deep dark pit of darkness. I think I’m shit. I think all my work is shit. Everything I do is shit. I think life in general is meaningless, pointless, and just total shit. It’s a brain-numbing paralysis. It’s totally irrational. It’s hard to breathe. Hard to think. Hard to function.
I console myself in the fact that it only happens once a month, it is not my normal, and it goes away. No doubt it coincides with my monthly hormone cycles.
9) Brooklyn Nine-Nine has been my go-to answer for finding meaning at the end of the day. Only joking. It’s how we de-stress in the evenings. I am literally snorting with laughter and doing the whole “ugly laughing” thing. It’s so good haha.
10) I’m Currently Reading two books at once. Far From a Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy. I’m halfway through. The language is just lovely. But the heroine is really annoying me at the moment. Three men have fallen in love with her and vying for her attention, and she chooses the worst one. Ugh.
Just like Anna Karenina, I want to slap some sense into her. I hope she redeems herself soon. Probably not. It’d be a short novel if she did.
So I’m reading Catch 22 by Joseph Heller. I’ve always wanted to read it. My husband has kept his high school copy, so that’s the version I’m reading. It’s hilarious so far. And a bit weird. I’m loving it.
OK ten points will do for now.
Thanks for reading! I’m off for a run!