I certainly am appreciating the work/life balance that a reduction in working hours brings.
I am poorer financially but so much looser if you know what I mean...less tightly wound.
There may not be the same amount of money in the paycheck each month but my-oh-my a 3 day week is fan-bloody-tastic. Who cares if you can write your name in the dust on the furniture in these here parts......housework is very over rated. As long as the bed is made and the dishwasher is on
then s'all good with me. I do wish I had fully realised this really important fact when the kids were at home.
Sometimes, now, I stand on the landing and look into the empty bedrooms and recall those years when the rooms weren't empty and tidy. When the kids were in them, either alone or with friends, and there were books and uniforms scattered around and music playing and I seemed to spend lots of time frowning and worrying and dusting and hoovering and picking up clothes and towels, and cooking and washing up and dealing with dentists and school trips..... daily life and work and school and activities and sleepovers and.........y'know.....was immersed in the whole, noisy, busy, blessed, gorgeous, tiring, laughing, crying, shouting amazing familyness.
Which, as you probably know, goes by in a ...look....there it was...gone. Sigh.
And as much as I tried, it was hard each and every day to stand still and appreciate the now..relish the loveliness....relish the love.
So, now, semi-retired that I am, I hardly ever dust, or worry about tidying up.....and do sometimes feel sad that I wasn't a little more cavalier with regard to all the chores etc., back when the kids were with us. That I was a little less tense. I was tired and I didn't have the sense to see things differently back then.
You just do the best you can I guess.
Now, with just the two of us here, the place stays fairly presentable and we devote more time to being just us. I am certainly a little older and I hope wiser...more relaxed I like to think.
So we love this little window of time we have together.
Which is not to say that we don't love it when the kids visit. This weekend our girl is here with us for a flying weekend visit from that-there-London and our son and daughter in law are joining us for lunch later....and I have given some thought to what is important today....so I'm not going to dust or hoover .....but try to listen really hard to the people in my life that I love.
I telephone my parents less and less now (although the weekly visits continue) because daily calls became such a ....chore. Sad, but true.
So. As the kids will be here today I will try to pay attention - to them and what they say. I know that I'm not terribly good at keeping quiet .... I'm an 'interrupter' and I hate myself for it...it is a constant work in progress with me ......so more listening........more really listening.......because I suspect that one day it might not just be their physical presence I miss.....but the sound of their voices.