I've been feeling a little frustrated lately.
Perhaps it's that it's been over 5 weeks since Cary left and I've had very little time to myself. And I miss him.
Perhaps it's that, if I don't keep on top of the cleaning and the clutter, it really starts to bother me. But it only takes 10 minutes to get it all back to tidy again.
Perhaps it's because the 3 kids recently had worms. Worms! They've never had them before. Is that from living like this? No, research shows they are very common. But still, it had me wondering. And doing a LOT more washing than usual.
Perhaps it's because the "honeymoon" period of this new lifestyle is wearing off. The initial "oh we're living like we're on vacation all the time" is over and we're moving into a new acceptance of actually living like this. It's still good, but I have found myself focusing on little annoyances like having to wait for a washing machine (it is school holidays so there are more people in the park at the moment) or try and fit all of our clothes onto a small space of communal clothes line and last night I had to wait for the oven in the camp kitchen because I got there too late and I haven't figured out how to use the oven in our camper, and the tray I had the home-made pizza on for the kids was probably too big for it anyway.
The practical side of living in a small space was bothering me. Some little things I wanted were stored under the seating area which also gets made into the boys bed. I used to undo the bed every day but that was getting too much so now I only undo it every few days. Yesterday I wanted something that was just really hard to get to. I ended up showing my kids how to have a good hissy fit! I need to shuffle things around a bit to make it easier to get to the things I need sometimes and move the things I rarely need to the parts that are harder to get to. Then comes the thought "do I really need some of the things I've brought with me?" I have hardly looked at any of the books I've brought for myself. But it is just nice to know that they are there in case I want to (or get the time to).
Ooh - here's another thought - if I really wanted to look at those books (or do any of the crafts, play the games, etc), then surely I would make that a priority and would find a way to work it in. Like when I read the last Harry Potter book in 3 or 4 days time. So why can't I be more passionate about following my other interests and make certain I get time every day to devote to them? To a certain extent I am just living my passion in the way that I am living and growing. But I'd like to do ..just more of the things that interest me.
Perhaps it's because my little frustrations are rubbing off on the kids and they have been annoying each other and that's been adding to my frustration.
I am trying to turn this all around. Get back into the moment. Focus on what's good now. I often see the faces of the families as they are packing up, preparing to leave. No one looks happy. The parents are probably thinking about the drive ahead of them, what needs to be done when they get home and back to work and into the routine of their lives. The kids are probably wishing they could stay and play all the time. They're probably all sad that their vacation - and their relaxed, fun time there - has almost ended. I remind myself that this is a choice we've made. We could choose another way if we wanted. Do I want anything else? ..No.
I'm learning about myself and these frustrations are all lessons. (I feel I've blogged about this before, but it's coming around again so I want to express it here, and tell it like it is as we adjust to living on the road full-time.)
I love living simply. I love the freedom we have when we're ready to move on. I love living outdoors. I love my kids. I so want to be a really great mother but right now I don't feel like I am as I've been focused on keeping things organised, and concerning myself with the daily tasks. The kids have been getting little bits of me in between all of the other things we've been doing. Even when I have had time with the kids, I've often been thinking about the other things that still need doing that day (gotta pick up more bananas, get the washing off the line, empty the toilet, charge the phone, make sure the internet bill is right etc.) That is so back-to-front! I'm going to switch that so that I focus on my kids and the daily tasks are things that get done in between all of the things that we do together.
It will all be easier when Cary gets back and he can help with some of those daily things as well as make sure I get time for me which I think is what I'm really needing. I used to think that a "good" mother could totally focus on her children, and time for herself was a selfish luxury. Now I know that, for me, it is essential for my sanity and serenity. But for now, I'll take my selfish moments whenever I can whether it's for one minute or 20 (if Nuke takes a nap and the other two are playing with friends), and remember to recharge myself. I still do yoga most mornings, sometimes if I wake up really early, I light some candles and do yoga by candlelight just before the sun comes up. It's very special. I'm eating well - simple fresh foods - and my energy is increasing. I think I'm moving into a new phase of me and these frustrations are old conditionings being noticed and released.
I am here now. This moment is perfect.