I’ve been painting.
But not that kind of painting... the other sort... where you climb up a ladder and get a stiff neck and a bad back and splodges of white paint in interesting places. It’s been exhausting and time-consuming but really worthwhile. The house looks fresher and brighter and ready for autumn.
I get into a kind of daydream when I’m working hard like this. I think I’ve finally realised that ‘it’ is never going to be ‘finished’ or ‘done’... the house, the garden, my lifestyle, whatever. I’d really love this not to be true, for there to come a time when I could sit back and relax and know that everything was beautiful... but when you do that, the weeds grow, the dust settles, the unexpected pops up. And when you concentrate on one thing, another thing gets forgotten. It’s endless.
The challenge of course is to accept this truth and not fight it, to learn how to weave in the other things and not to get frightened of things getting out of control, to know that it will all work out ok.
I'm going to be honest with you: I didn't do all those things on my list every day. Some days I did most of them, some days I did some of them and one day I did nothing except the housework. I found that what I thought would be a helpful prompt ended up being a nasty laughing reminder that I can't even manage the basics of life...
... and that's not good, because it's not true. I'm just not a list-and-routine sort of a person, that's all, however much I'd like to be - I work in rushes of energy, and then I daydream and rest - that's how I've always been, and that's how I suppose I always will be. Better start working with it, and more importantly, accepting and enjoying it... we can only be ourselves.
I did do a little painting though. Just to see if I could.