Mermaid

I am sat in the most beautiful azure blue bath, sparkling with gold glitter, feeling like a beautiful mermaid.

My daughter bought me a relaxation bathing kit for my birthday in April. Since we don’t have the fire on until winter, I’ve waited until now for hot bath water.

The bath bomb was blue and the top looked like golden crystals:

I’m not a bath bomb fan per se – I’ve heard stories that they’re not always great for your skin – but this was a beautiful and expensive gift that I’ve waited to use. The bath looks and smells beautiful and I feel like I’m in a tropical lagoon.

I’ve always had a vivid imagination. As a child (teen), long before we worried about the price of electricity, I would have long showers pretending I was in a waterfall or tropical pool. I could construct a whole narrative.

I also used to play outdoors alone, imagining myself in magical worlds or giving myself superpowers. On my pony, I would imagine we were winding our way through narrow cobbled streets on a quest, not exercising in a grassy paddock.

I love being imaginative and creative. At the moment, I’m starting on the decorations for my step sister’s wedding cake. I craft, sew, paint and draw.

One of the many things I loved about being a teacher was planning exciting lessons. Having to complete pupil voice each year, it was pleasing to note that my schemes of work were often the most popular.

It’s what I miss about teaching. Now, lesson plans are standardised. Everyone teaches the same. And, I get it. Shared schemes save workload and support new/inexperienced/ supply teachers. I introduced shared schemes as a Head of Department. But, I rarely enforced them. We had common assessment points. We had set assessment objectives. But I allowed the creativity of the teacher and the necessity to adapt learning for the climate of an individual classroom to dictate how those assessment objectives were taught. Today, many schools feel like examination conveyor belts. Pupils and teachers are bored. I was bored.

Being a tutor means I can plan bespoke, individual lessons to allow these vulnerable and disengaged children to enjoy learning again and feel successful. I love it. I love this job. But the pay and conditions are poor. I’m not compensated for printing and buying resources, or the many miles I travel between houses. There’s no security.

Following my dabble with Mindvalley’s Lifebook earlier this week, I found a few additional resources online to help. I can’t afford the $500 price tag. So, I’ve got to do it myself and I’ve found maybe 1/2 of the tools to help me.

One area of consideration is career. I’ve realised, and probably known deep down for a long time, I no longer care about my career. I have no ego. I’m proud of my successes and sad about its demise but I don’t care anymore about titles and power and notches on my career belt. What I love, is helping children and being creative.

And that, in a nutshell, is what my long desired business is about.

For now, again, it is parked. I can’t afford it at the moment and my focus needs to be on making enough funds to survive, my son and my own mental health.

Today was horrendous. My anxiety had hit tsunami proportions. I was actually shaking – something I’ve not done for 5 years. Tomorrow I have a meeting in my son’s school – the school that ended my career – and I have to face going in there again and try to be strong and fight for what my son needs.

Thank you to my recent reader for liking ‘glamorous’, a post of mine from last month. I always read the post if it’s been liked and not recent. It’s amazing how coincidentally, my own words are pertinent. This was exactly that.

Wish me luck tomorrow.

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Apples

Here’s a question for you… do you know where your happy places are?

Now, before you answer that – as I am sure certain things jumped straight into your mind – think carefully. Really think. Don’t answer with what you are supposed to say. What everyone says. Just let yourself think.

Yesterday, as my post spelled out, I was not in a great place. I haven’t been for weeks.

If we rewind six months, I was contemplating my future. Unsure of what to do, I spent weeks…months not deciding anything, and feeling the pressure of the decision.

In the end I chose to go back to my career. I was swayed by the job I was offered and the money it would give me. I made a plan. How I would use the money wisely this time to build the future I want. How I would take the job offered to me to ease myself back in, rebuild confidence and learn. Find myself.

There and then, as 1st September loomed closer, I felt positive. Excited. Nervous, yes, but up for the challenge.

From day one, it has been awful.

Everything I had been told was a lie. Whilst I had been told the road was tough, I accepted the role on fabrications of ‘solid teams’, ‘high staff morale’ and ‘recent improvements’. I was swayed by ‘major investment’, ‘forward thinking management’ and ‘good behaviour’.

Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope and Hell No.

From day one, I saw the divided senior team of which I was supposed to be part. I wasn’t part of either side. I wasn’t invited to meetings. I was ignored.

The rooms hadn’t been renovated. Instead, nothing worked. No whiteboard, electrical or otherwise. No ability to print.

No key, no pass, no induction.

Timetables and rooms were wrong. Resources were given two days in advance of teaching and yet I was expected to be leading a department who had not been led for years.

Behaviour…. well. They ignore you. They bully, fight, swear. They’re obnoxious and intimidating. But it’s ok, ‘once they get to know you they’re good lads.’

What has been made apparent from my five weeks there, is actually, there is no team. There is no care. There is no leadership. People will tell you they feel sorry for your situation and then load you up with an unobtainable and excessive workload.

Within two weeks, I’d burst in to tears. I wanted to walk out. I was told about how ‘mental health’s an important part of the school’ and maybe I was ‘expecting too much of myself as a perfectionist’. I later found out that this leader had huffed and puffed when she’d found out I was upset and had to speak to me. More lies.

The new academy is hopefully taking over soon (I was told they already had.) But, one teary outburst and lots of happiness since, I know that my card is already marked no matter what they say.

The last few Sundays, working all day, I’ve been miserable. Snapping at my children. Fighting with Wildcard. Crying. Feeling sick.

Tuesday, I woke up ill. The flu-like symptoms that had threatened descended. I planned one day off then back in. At 6am, my whole body screamed differently.

And so it continued.

Whilst I was unwell, I realised that probably half of it was stress. I didn’t want to get out of bed. Work dominated my dreams and waking moments.

After a few heartfilled conversations with friends, family and ex-colleagues, I made my decision and called the doctors. I have two weeks off and a resignation letter ready to send.

I’ve probably thrown away my career. Not sure I care anymore. I’ve cried more about letting family down and worrying about money. It has passed for now.

So, step one complete, I’ve forced myself out of bed.

Yesterday, I made myself pick the apples on my dad’s tree. I waded through 6ft nettles and weeds. I got stung and scratched. But I felt a sense of achievement.

I sat in my happy place – a place I have avoided- and I wrote in my dad’s journal for the first time in 3 years.

And, gazing at the basket of apples, journal on my knee: I felt at peace.

A beautiful life

Ok, I admit it. I’ve not been taking my medication. My antidepressants. And it’s for no other reason than I keep forgetting. It’s been a few weeks now of having the occasional tablet.

Interestingly, no one has noticed. There hasn’t been a noticeable shift in my moods. I don’t feel much different either. I’d always hoped that once the stress of work had gone then I would be more like myself.

However, work stress hasn’t left me completely as I have said in previous posts. But that is not what this post is about.

I’ve discussed it with my sister and I think I’m going to lower my dose and try to remember to take them. It seems the best plan.

I’ve been thinking about the past year. It was just over a year ago when I had my anti depressants upped the first time. And then again when I was negotiating leaving my career.

I still can’t believe it sometimes. But – as hindsight is such a wonderful thing – I can see how unhappy I was there. In fact, I wonder if I ever was truly happy there. Convenience, and I guess success, made me stay there so long. But no, I wasn’t happy.

But what the academy did to me was worse, I realise that now. I lost complete faith in myself. They stripped me of my confidence and my self esteem. I have spent 10 months doubting everything I do. In those ten months I have put on two stone. I’ve stopped all the healthy habits I once had – like reading, facial care, taking tablets, sleep, eating well, exercise. I’ve stopped putting makeup on each day. And whilst a bit of make up doesn’t matter, what it shows is that I gave up. I gave up.

I was so proud of my weight loss and how it made me feel. I want that back.

I’ve had a disappointing week- my business has not taken off like I’d hoped – but I can’t let this haunt me or put me off.

This is just the beginning of the new life I am going to lead. It’s a very short period of time in my life and it will come and go.

I’ve had a beautiful life so far, despite everything. I had a full childhood and experiences that many have never had. I’ve been loved. I’ve been successful. I’ve had children. I’ve travelled. I’ve built relationships.

I could list the negative things, of course I could. But I won’t. That was my life then, and this is my life now.

I’m not giving up.

Sleeping Beauty

I’ve dreamed about school over the past two nights. Strangely, about my primary school, not where I work. Or worked.

The first night, I dreamed I was helping out tidying, and I sneaked a look into the attic. Inside were boxes and boxes of memorabilia, items from the last. O couldn’t set foot in the attic because the floor was made of split bamboo canes so it was precarious to walk on. (Even in my dream I wondered how all the stuff was up there). I saw children’s ballet shoes and reminded myself about my little ballet bag as a child.

Last night I was back at the school again. This time, the school was renovating a classrroom/kitchen. I was helping to peel wallpaper. There was much discussion on how it should be decorated with people changing their minds. I carried on with what I had initially been asked to do. Then it was open evening and parents and small children were there. I walked around with my school ID and explained I was there to support the children.

I kept wanting to leave though as my dog was locked in my car. I had stayed longer than intended. I kept walking round the maze of the school, trying to find my handbag and keys. At one point, I was asked to help as a first aider- a woman had a hole to size of a ping-pong ball in her arm. There was no blood.

I eventually found my things and spoke to the new Headmistress of the school who congratulated me on my work stripping wallpaper. I toured th school with her, pointing out how it had been altered since my time there. I then let my dog out of the car, and walked him towards the school field where a carnival was starting. He turned into a pony, as things do in dreams, and some students of my current school petted him.

🕥

So it is 10.30am now. I’m still in bed. I haven’t walked or jogged or even had my coffee.

Yesterday after a really positive start, I slid into exhaustion. I couldn’t keep my eyes open. I waited patiently for my union rep to get in contact as he was making the first move to me leaving. He contacted me at 2.30 to say a meeting was planned for today. I then went back to sleep.

This morning, I slept through my alarm. I woke at 7.45am and hurriedly got my youngest ready for school. Once his dad had picked him up I went back to bed and to sleep. I woke again at 9.45 when Wildcard called me.

He knew something was wrong – when doesn’t he – but I didn’t want to talk as I’m not sure what is wrong myself. Only when he mentioned the meeting did tears suddenly appear.

I still haven’t got up.

My head is woozy and all I want to do is shut my eyes again. I’m thirsty and hungry and I know if I take the dog out I will feel better but I just can’t. My sadness is like a weight in my head, dragging me towards sleep. I’m tired of everything and everyone. Even Wildcard.

Will I wake from a long sleep, the worst over, beautiful and with a full and happy life ahead of me? My body clearly thinks so.

I did it!

This morning, I got up at 6.15am. I put on my exercise clothes which I had set out the night before. I got my dog on the lead, started the podcast and completed my very first session for the Couch to 5K NHS programme.

I’m proud of myself.

What I noticed:

  1. I love being put early morning in the sunshine.
  2. Having everything ready was a great motivator.
  3. My dog enjoyed it.
  4. I probably need to be out earlier to avoid other dog walkers and to feel less self-concious.
  5. 60 seconds of jogging isn’t as long as I thought it was.
  6. I couldn’t brisk walk by the end.
  7. My legs felt like jelly on the last run.
  8. Completing a 6 minute stretch routine at the end helped.

Tomorrow is a rest day but I’m going to go out again for a leisurely walk and do some yoga.

It is only 8.45am and I could go to sleep!! I found it really hard to get to sleep last night, maybe because I knew I was getting up early. I aim to be in bed by 10pm tonight.

Other developments which caused my insomnia are that work called me yesterday and requested a meeting on Thursday. I have a meeting with my union rep this morning to discuss and plan.

I know I can’t go back. There is a war in my brain as I keep thinking I could, this isn’t happening, I’m over-reacting. But then, I consider the truth. I had one day off for a migraine and I was sent a letter offering a settlement to leave. This was before I had phoned the doctors for a sick note. I need to face the truth that they just don’t want me.

I’m leaning more and more towards the tutor business but I’m scared. How will I make enough money? Where do I even begin?

I think, once the meetings are over and the settlement is signed sealed and delivered, I will feel better and resolute and ready to go.

For now I’m going to take a shower and hopefully wake up.

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Hello…

Hello out there. I disappeared again but I am back. I’m hoping you haven’t disappeared too.

I’m sipping coffee on a chilly, autumnal morning. I love autumn. The feeling of change in the air…the colours, the warm sun and cooler breezes…the fires, dark nights and bright mornings.

My dad loved autumn too and he has been in my thoughts a lot recently. I miss him terribly.

There has been some development though. I have been on my increased medication for some weeks now and it is having a positive effect. I feel calmer. Proof of that was when I listened to a set of songs from my Dad’s death and funeral. And I didn’t cry. I was sad, yes, but the overwhelming wave of emotion didn’t crush me. I felt like that was progress…I hope it was.

Work has been ridiculously crazy. Unless you are working in the education sector, you have absolutely no idea how difficult it is the moment with all the Covid restrictions. School is a maelstrom of stress and anxiety and concern: caution, change and long long hours. Staff are exhausted. Pupils are unhappy. It’s not easy but life goes on, of a fashion.

Added to that for me, is that my school is in the process of becoming an academy. More stress. More anxiety. Rumours of job losses and change. Certain staff in school have been particularly stressed and that has made for a very uncomfortable atmosphere in meetings. Other staff are out for what they can get, maneuvering themselves into a better position and not caring who they step on. It’s horrible. I value my integrity too much for that, so I’m sticking with honesty and working the best I can.

Interestingly the Covid and academy situations have come together to create an interesting situation. At one point, five of our leadership were absent, leaving the four of us in charge without a Head or Deputy or the capacity to cover the duties as normal. We came together and worked better as a team than we have ever done. And then, the academy staff came in to help and having worked with them for two weeks now, some of my anxiety is gone. I like how they work. I just have to hope they like how I work too.

Which leaves me with Wild Card.

I’ve had weeks of things being really, really great. He’s reassured me. We’ve talked of our future together. We’ve laughed and we’ve loved.

And boy, do I love him. More and more and more. More than I thought ever possible. And it terrifies me that I feel so much. Because what I feel isn’t enough, is it? It has to be both of us.

There have been real signs and conversations that he feels this way too. Equally, some off moments. This week has been challenging as he had some issues at home and even though he said it wasn’t me, his behaviour towards me changed. It’s not the first time this has happened and I need to remember that. He told me, ‘I’m not ok, but I will be. It’s not you, everything between us is ok. You don’t need to worry.’ But it’s hard when he is emotionally distant even though he is in contact as much as ever.

Last night he was more himself again so hopefully things will return to normal. There’s still no sign of being able to get over there and it is now nearly nine months since I have been with him. It’s heart achingly hard. I sometimes wonder how this can ever work out but I have to keep positive and jeep faith that if it is meant to be, it will be.

Take care everyone.

Contrasts

I am sat on a park bench. The sun is blindingly hot but there’s a wonderful breeze which is just taking the bite of the heat away.

The park is a hubbub of people and noise: groups of teenagers lurking; juniors on scooters or cartwheeling across the cool grass; babies in pushchairs accompanied by proud grandparents or tired mums.

The play area is crowded. Families are dotted on picnic blankets around the park. Every bench has an occupant or two.

I’ve just enjoyed eating my lunch on one of these benches after my first day back in work.

Sitting here, you wouldn’t think that Corona is still destroying the lives of so many people. You wouldn’t think that it’s keeping people apart as borders remain closed. Or destroying businesses and industries. You wouldn’t think that tomorrow, my colleague is burying her mother after waiting four weeks and suffering in the knowledge that the death could have been prevented. You wouldn’t think that I’ve seen children cry today because their ‘exam’ results are just another unfairness , added on to all the others they have faced in the last few months. You wouldn’t think that I’ve learnt that the academy will take over my school and that people will lose their jobs or their careers are going to change. Mine, more than likely.

For a few minutes I can sit. I can forget it all whilst listening to children laugh and while I feel the breeze and the sun in my face.

Teetering

I know I haven’t posted much recently. There’s a lot been going on but also nothing.

I went back to work. I don’t mind being back in work. I like interacting with the few key worker children that are coming in. I can work without disruption in my office.

But it really scares me. My anxiety has intensified at the thought of the increased risk of being in full time and the fact that my children have to be in school more and learn nothing on the few days they are at home now (their dad works from home).

I don’t agree with the decision to make us come back full time. It’s not safe yet – schools in my area are not open yet. But I spoke to my boss, made my point and whilst there was a suggestion of understanding and support there was an underlying message of ‘this support is limited:get back to work’.

The anniversary of my dad’s death hit me pretty hard too. I was a mess all weekend and cried repeatedly.

Things with Wild Card are OK. We are still in regular contact and I love him as much as ever. He was very supportive about my Dad. And you know, its probably my mental state at the moment but I’ve found that his joking has not been as funny recently and has actually hurt a little. When he realises that he stops and apologises or makes it up to me… But even so.

And then yesterday, it all got worse. I came home from work and was called by my ex. His housemate has suspected corona. My kids were there this week but are with me at the moment. We all need to self isolate.

I’m sure all of you will understand the crippling fear that took over in that moment – the thought that my children could have corona, even my ex could, I could.

Let’s just add a bit more stress though. Let’s add my work suggesting that even though my children are with me and need to isolate, I don’t need to so could come to work. Which mean I leave them at home alone. Which means if they have it and have given it to me, I then pass it on to people in school.

I’m losing all faith in our school’s leadership and that is not a good thing.

I called my doctor and he suggested some time off work for my anxiety (not going to happen) and an increase to my anxiety meds. He gave little advice about the corona other than my kids need to isolate and ‘as a twacher’ I am ‘intelligent enough to work it out and make a decision’. Thanks for that Doc.

So, I have told work that I wi isolate with my kids as I am not leaving them home alone. I will get us tested if anyone has symptoms. And with that, I will leave my anxiety teetering until my Med’s kick in.

Flourish

The weeks are zooming by. There’s only two left until Easter and the day I take my three children to France, alone.

I’m really excited about showing them France and about spending time with them without distractions.

I’m petrified about the airport and driving abroad, neither of which I have even done without another adult or at all in the case of the driving.

I certainly don’t regret the decision. Since Dad died, I’m more focused on creating memories with my children. If the memory is mum getting arrested for driving on the wrong side of road, we’ll so-be-it.😁

In essence, I’m trying to fill a massive Dad shaped void in my life. All year I’ve been booking trips and days out and it has helped. I’m doing things I enjoy, things that distract.

I’m the final weeks of Dad’s life, when he was in hospital, my sisters and I were leaving the hospital and stopped at the pay station to pay our parking. On top of the machine was a book, brand new.

There was no one around who could have left this book (we were leaving late at night) and no volunteers on the help desk to hand it to. We decided to take it with us, in order to hand it in when we came in the next day. All good intentions.

I hope whoever forgot their book that day forgives me for not handing it in. It wasn’t intentional. I can’t remember exactly why I didn’t, my only excuse being that my Dad was dying – my head was not thinking of much else.

Nine months later and I have started to read the book.

The book is about using positive psychology to help patients with depression and anxiety overcome their negative thinking patterns. It couldn’t have been more relevant to me unless God had handed it me himself.

I’m only a few chapters in so far and it has been interesting. It gives you exercises to try and a link to their website where you can take free questionnaires/assessments. I have taken the rather long but intriguing personality test which revealed things that I didn’t expect but completely now understand. (The idea is that if you do more activities which use these signature strengths, you will be happier).

I expected creativity to be pretty high in my personality list. I write, craft, bake and design cakes, make learning resources and lessons etc..It wasn’t.

Top of my list:

When I initially got the results I didn’t think the top one was right. I mean, that is me, but at the top?

Thinking about it (yes, I know there is irony there) it is very much me. I need to think things through from all angles before I make a decision. When I haven’t thought things through, I get a real sense of uneasiness. When I have and a decision is made, I get a eureka moment or epiphany. This blog is full of them. This blog is me thinking: I start with an idea of something I want to write about and work through, and the act of writing often helps me work it out. I never know what I’m going to write exactly.

Two is not wholly unexpected. It is evident in my love of art and music and my obsession with the outdoors – trees and mountains and lakes. Maybe this is why the Lake District appeals to me so much – it activates a signature strength therefore makes me feel happy and content.

Three – my motto in life is ‘treat people how you would expect to be treated yourself’. Pretty significant, I would say. My job in leading behaviour in school makes sense too. It’s not the role I ultimately wanted but I don’t hate it.

Four – yep. I loved being a Head of Department, and only wanted a promotion when I felt that I was no longer needed: my department was running like clockwork and had developed into a strong entity. I wanted a challenge and so applied for senior leadership. Ironically, I haven’t had the same satisfaction in this role. I don’t have a team to lead and so this may explain why I feel so isolated at times. It also explains why I have used working parties so many times as I have planned and changed strategies.

And five? Well, I’m a teacher. Says it all really. As a teacher, you are constantly learning and developing yourself to teach better. I love teaching my pupils. And, I also have a long list of things that I want to learn – photography, landscape painting, piano, another language. I’d go back to Uni in a heartbeat; to learn the modules I was unable to choose the first time. I need to make time to learn things.

So, to make myself happier, I need to plan more opportunities to use these strengths.

The other activity that I have used and have found helpful, is the ‘What went well’ log. We use ‘What went well’ (WWW) in school regularly. Pupils reflect on their learning and staff reflect on their teaching – it’s a familiar concept.

I’ve tried positivity logs before and I ran out of steam. The previous one was a ‘thankful log’. There’s only so many times you can write about being thankful for family and friends, health, wealth and opportunities.

The WWW log makes me thi k about my day. Sure, sometimes I struggle to find three but I work on it, think about it and I always do get three. I have downloaded an App on my phone to log them easily and this enables me to look back. In time I will analyse what I’m writing, using a signature strength of course.

This book is helping me. I’d like to think it was fate that we found it. I also like the idea that someone may have left the book there on purpose for someone else to use. (I doubt it as the book was brand new and still had the amazon receipt in).

Either way, my plan is to buy another copy of this book and leave it somewhere in the hope that fate will lead someone else to finding it and using it. In a sense, that’s what I have done here on this blog.

I will update when I have read and used more. Happy reading!

Day zero

I am not in work today – more on this later.

For the first time in weeks, I went back to bed yesterday (after the children had gone to school with their dad). I don’t know whether it was a reaction to knowing that I was in work the next day, or simply that I was tired after being ill the previous week and that it was still lingering.

I woke at 10.30 and felt pretty good. I did my chores, got ready and went out. Another small victory – this is the first time since my breakdown that I have gone out on my own without the need to go food shopping.

I had set myself the task to look into getting my completed cross stitch framed.

As an English teacher, you will not be surprised to hear that Jane Austen is my favourite author. Years ago, in a (very) rare moment of romantic consideration, my husband organised a road trip which included Stratford upon Avon (Shakespeare), Oxford (Phillip Pullman’s Northern Lights trilogy) and Chawton (Jane Austen). Despite husband not being a fan of these authors, we had a lovely time. And I got to see Jane Austen’s House and museum ☺. The cross-stitch was bought in the gift shop and is a representation of one of the only images we have of Austen – a watercolour painted by her sister Cassandra.

The cross-stitch is the biggest and most complex pattern I have ever completed. It has literally taken me years, partly because there was a long period of time when I simply didn’t do it. I find stitching very relaxing and so naturally, in an attempt to combat the stress and anxiety of my breakdown, I picked it back up again.

And so, the completed picture is very important. It is a memory of happier times. It is a beautiful image of my favourite writer and signifies a love of literature that lead to my English degree and career in teaching. It is a symbol of perseverance and my recovery.

So off I went. Turns out getting something framed is not as simple as I thought but I got a quote from one place and will be revisiting another framers at the weekend. I did do some shopping and had lunch on my own, book in hand, in a busy restaurant. Small victory number 2.

Last night I was a little nervous but no more than I am after the summer holiday.

I didn’t sleep particularly well but I expected that. I woke at 6am but knowing that I was only taking two of my children to school, I stayed in bed until 6.30am. It was then that I saw this:

This snow was completely unexpected. Typical I thought. First day back and I have to contend with snow. As you can imagine, a snowy school full of children is not an easy place to be in.

I showered, woke the children and started to get ready. It was still snowing quite heavily so kept an eye on the two school websites. Low and behold, at 7.30am, the message came through that my school was closed.

You’d think that this would be a welcome message. It wasn’t really. I had built myself up for being in school. I had been repeating my mantra all morning whilst drying my hair and putting on a full face of makeup (Confident, calm and controlled). When the message came I was ready for work and the children were ready for school. My daughter elwas ecstatic of course as this meant that she had a snow day too. Unfortunately for my son, his school has remained open. This through me in to a full scale panic. What do I do? Am I still expected to go into school (has happened previously)? Should I take my son in? What about my youngest’s nursery?

All of this was further compounded by my ex calling on his way home from work to say that the roads were treacherous and that it had tripled his journey home. I was in a headspin.

Ridiculous hey? It seems quite simple now that I have calmed, but for about 15 minutes I couldn’t think straight. I made him come round anyway.

He said that our middle son should not go to school despite it being open. We live some miles away from the school as we chose this one as it was near my work not near our home. Unlike other families who were in walking distance, we would need to drive. And if my own school had considered the roads to be too dangerous to drive on, it seemed silly to risk going that way for him.

So, I changed out of my work suit and here I am!