It’s been a crazy, busy few weeks for the Cams and life has been very stressful. We’ve had appointments nearly every day for the boys or myself, Craig has had a full on work schedule and it’s December which means there’s lots of extra things going on and lots to prepare for Christmas. Then there’s the everyday things to keep on top of like washing, cooking, housework and school schedules all in between the craziness! When we go through crazy, busy times like this people will often say to me “I don’t know how you can do this”. I’ll tell you my secret: I just keep swimming. There have been many moments where I’ve felt like I’m in the middle of the ocean drowning in the sea of appointments, to-do-lists and demands but I can’t let them pull me under – I just have to keep swimming. The more you keep swimming, the more the shore comes into sight. These crazy, busy times always pass, we always keep our heads above water and we always make it to the shore eventually – I have to remind myself of this when I’m in the middle of the ocean, then, I keep swimming. So there’s a few things I’ve learned while swimming through the crazy, busy times and these things make it easier to keep going:
1) Focus on one thing at a time: when I’m swimming through the ocean of craziness I can only see the day ahead – try to think about how crazy the next few days are and it’s too overwhelming and starts to pull you under. I make a list for the one crazy day I’m in and tick it off as I swim through the various tasks to be done. I may appear disorganised when you ask me how my Christmas shopping is going, I might come across as chaotic when I haven’t thought about the dinners or the school calendar or the weekend or the invite that’s 3 months away but trust me I do have it all under control – it’s just under control one day at a time because that’s the only way I can keep swimming.
2) Talk it out: During these crazy, busy times I’ve found it’s best to keep talking things over. It’s easy to shut down when things get busy but that will only make it harder to swim through the craziness so keep talking, keep checking each other is okay. When we’re in the crazy ocean we usually go over the next days plans every night – where everyone will be and at what times. We don’t really need to have big, elaborate conversations during crazy times – that wastes vital energy that we actually need to keep swimming but we always check everyone’s okay. We go into survival mode and talk in bullet points; have you done this?, I’ve checked that, what do we need for this?, I’ve organised that. This is fine for crazy times because when we reach the shore and stop swimming we can be us again. As long as we keep swimming together it’s always okay.
3) Take the pressure off: when we are in keep swimming mode we take all the extra pressure off. We don’t make any extra plans, we probably won’t see much friends and we only prioritise the essentials like hospital, school and work. If I send you a really short message or just an emoji it will probably be because I’m currently swimming through my crazy day – please don’t think I’m being rude – when I catch my breath, I will message again. When crazy, busy times hit us my freezer is stocked with easy dinners and some nights we even order a take away because I don’t have the energy or time to be cooking masterchef meals – take the pressure off – it’s not going to harm anyone for a few weeks to eat a few freezer meals! The world isn’t going to end if my living room hasn’t been hoovered or my washing is piled up or I’ve missed a phone call – I just need to take the pressure off in order to keep swimming.
So, I’ve made it to the end of a crazy, busy time, I’ve reached the shore. I’m tired, I’m drained but I kept swimming. I have my p.j’s on and glass of wine in hand and I’m catching my breath again. I will chill but only for a little while because I know for sure I will be swimming again – it’s the only way to stay afloat in this different kind of normal – just keep swimming.