28 April 2005

I Double Dare Myself

Laurence, my ever patient friend and upline at The Utility Warehouse, went through a period (as did I) of extreme frustration at my inactivity.

Put it this way - I signed up in January. Already I have two people signed up beneath me and one of them has recruited, but I have nix, nada, zip in the way of genuine customers. Whatever you have heard of companies that use MLM, this one is based firmly on seeking and looking after customers, more than distributors.

I would gladly tell anyone who asked that this is a great deal from a safe, solid, reputable and long established British plc. The thing is that I havent actually gone out and about looking for anybody who might ask - life's little crises just got right in the way for the last ten weeks or so (three of which were the school Easter Holidays).

So, yesterday, during an extended phone call, which made it obvious that Laurence had thought long and hard about it, he told me that I wasnt achieving anything because I was too busy fire fighting - too busy with emergencies that demanded my attention to put any thought into things I'd actually choose to do.

I have to be honest, the mood I was in, I was biting my lip - it looked to me like I wasn't achieving because I just couldn't be bothered to do anything at all, whether it was a crisis or not!
This morning, then, fate stepped in and underlined things.

I overslept, by a good hour.

The kids overslept, too.

I forgot to turn the tumble drier on last night and their school uniform was all still soaking wet.

Imogen has swimming today but couldn't find her swimming hat. We all stopped to help hunt in and behind drawers and in all the improbable but possible places it might have got to. I saw sections of carpet I had forgotten were there. No joy.

Drier stopped, I got their uniform out, only to remember that Lewis had torn the crotch seam on his only pair of dark grey school trousers.

Hunt changes to looking for a needle and thread.

Twenty minutes later he has a bodge job mend on them, done with white thread and a darning needle from Imogen's cross-stitch kit (my fingers still hurt from forcing it through the close-weave trouser fabric).

So are we ready? No, we're flaming not. Lewis ran ahead with my door keys yesterday and let us all in. I forgot to get them back from him, and he forgot where he put them.

There are several surfaces in our house that are generally used for putting things down 'temporarily'. Catch 22 is they are all already thoroughly covered with 'temporary' things. Gary, my husband, is one of the worst offenders, with his tie and newspaper going on the nearest clear-ish top the instant he gets indoors. By clear-ish I mean that it could be covered in a three foot tall pile of laundry, but if theres a space to balance his stuff, that to him is good enough. It feels like he doesnt look in his wardrobe for a tie anymore, but round the spare sofa, on top of the treadle sewing machine, on top of the tumble drier etc. My whole house could be compared to England with its illegal immigrants and asylum seekers - so far behind with the paperwork that they are scattered all over the bloody place, either waiting for a real home or a trip to the bin; just hanging about, taking up space and resources and gathering dust.

We found the keys eventually- nestled in a pile of ironing on the spare sofa. By that time we had pulled the sofas out, emptied the top of the sewing machine and cleared two kitchen surfaces of cereal boxes and the like. The very next step would have been to disconnect and pull out the tumble drier to check down the back.

Half past ten this morning I got my two kids to school, an hour and a half behind schedule. I have been non-stop busy since eight this morning and what has it achieved?


Here I am then, two hours behind on even starting my day, totally confused about what needs doing first, demoralised and feeling like I have run a marathon already. Its like climbing up a glass hill in rollerskates and if anything could have convinced me of Laurence's point, this morning was it.

There, had my whinge, had my cup of coffee, off to make a very, very, very long list of all the really crucial things that I ought to have done already, so I can start crossing them off, if I can find the be-bothered.

The goal is to get to a point where I can write a short list each evening covering urgent stuff, necessary stuff, basic stuff, and treats /nice idea stuff, then spend the following day feeling increasingly smug and competent (hahahahahaha) as I tick them off.

I think, given a world paper shortage, I will have to start with just the screaming red-letter 'do-it-or-suffer-the-consequences' stuff and see where we go from there, but one thing I know, I need to whip myself, this place and the rest of the family into shape or I will go in increasingly backward circles until I dissappear up my own agenda, Thwup, braarp.

Of course, thats all very sensible in theory. Watch this space.

Update at 5pm.
Day's achievements: (from 11am) 1 hour blogging about how much time I have wasted. 2 hours in complete slump, telly watching, pottering, self pity and procrastination. 1 hour lost in the mists of time. 1 hour collecting kids from school, on foot; consoling, discussing days, separating during multiple attempts at fratricide. 1 hour relative peace with one kid on my computer and the other glued to the goggle box - so I got the washing up done and planned dinner. Now 5pm. Going to start dinner -this will take an hour and a half, clearing up included.
Conclusion: my only solid plan so far today - sit down at 6.30 this evening and make a solid plan for tomorrow. yeah, right, we'll see...................

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