Yesterday the worst thing of all happened. I came home after a busy day at work and for the ten minutes I get between that and picking the kids up I sat down. There was no tv and worst of all no internet.
I could not check my Facebook newsfeed. I could not order the emergency pet food that was required because the fecking shop was being refitted. I could not browse holidays and pretend we aren’t in an eternal winter. I couldn’t read the BBC news page or check if it was going to snow. I couldn’t check my emails for the millionth time to see if I actually got the job interview that they seem to have mislaid my application for.
The mortifying thing was I was actually a bit lost. What did I do with my spare minutes before the internet? I genuinely don’t know.
I went and picked the kids up – four of them who all played (relatively) nicely for two hours. I had some time. But there still wasn’t any internet. And that’s what I do to avoid the washing.
As a result I fed them and actually tidied up the mess afterwards before bedtime. I even made them angel delight. (Well it’s more time consuming than my usual yoghurt from fridge removal).
They went back and played some more. I danced around the kitchen (because no-one was watching). I did a very small amount of washing – enough to make me feel I’d achieved something but without breaking my spirit. Then I played piano. For twenty whole minutes. I was pretty terrible but I felt freed in some way. Yes it was the same piece of been trying to play for years and I had mastered when I was 13 but it was something.
I am determined to use those minutes when the kids don’t need me for something else. Those snatched ten minutes. Not tidying, or cleaning, or cooking, or browsing the sodding internet. It needs to be things you can do for just a few moments at a time. Limericks. Origami. What on earth did I used to do before the internet?