Lego Party Bags

I spent this morning cutting out circles.

There’s nothing like a monotonous task to make you reassess life. And there’s nothing like trying to cut out neat circles to make you feel like a failure. (Try it, it’s impossible.)

September is like January for me. It’s a time of new beginnings and resolutions. A mixture of hope and ache, looking forward and feeling lost. The mornings are chilly but the days are warm. The children go back to school, and I’m free. But free to do what?

It’s also a birthday month. I love doing prep for birthdays because it’s fun and creative and the sole purpose is to make someone else smile. I like doing things for other people.

I’m not so good at my own birthday. I want to feel special, but don’t like being the centre of attention. I want people to lavish me with gifts, but I hate waste and can be a horrible sulking six-year-old feeling sad and guilty in equal measure if I don’t like what I’ve been given.

Poor family.

And today, for the first time in a long time, I feel lonely. Crazy, huh? I’ve spent the last six weeks pining for five minutes to myself and now I feel vulnerable in the emptiness.

The first week of school was okay. There was so much to catch up on, and I was on the ball. I organised clubs and Brownies/Beavers uniform. I dug out football boots and ironed shirts. Filled out forms, wrote cheques, and monitored homework. I even got around to finishing and posting off my first proofreading assignment.


Can you tell what it is yet?

But now the novelty and urgency has worn off. I still have birthday party prep to do – I’m dreaming about Lego cakes and spending my days making chocolate bricks and a Lego head pinata. But I’m trying to do it on a budget because I’ve had a spending splurge recently and no income to off-set the guilt.

I don’t even feel like knitting.

I think the gaping hole is meaning. Without the children at home, I don’t have an identity or a purpose (or an excuse). Without working on my books I’m not an author. But I’m also not a very good house-person or a very nice wife either. I don’t want to iron or paint my daughter’s room. I don’t want to do romantic things for my tenth wedding anniversary. I don’t really want to do anything.


My equivalent of the January blues, except it’s sunny outside so the weather doesn’t match my mood.

Maybe I should carry on writing, despite the metaphorical bruises from bashing my head against a closed door for six years. Perhaps you can be a writer without anyone actually reading what you write.

Maybe I just need a really good idea for a new children’s book.

Or maybe I should shut up, stop feeling sorry for myself, put it all down to deafness-caused-by-a-horrid-ear-infection and get on with things.

Answers on a postcard!


4 thoughts on “Circles

  1. I always feel a bit this way right after the kids return to school — rather lonely and lacking….something, structure maybe. I’m not sure what the flip has been for me (something to ponder for sure) but I no longer feel much guilt about the time I spend reading, writing (that likely won’t be published) and staring off into space. I honestly think these acts make my writing better. I only wish I enjoyed the party prep you speak of, but alas, though it’s creative, it is not something I do well or particularly enjoy — I think it’s the planning & needing things to turn out in a visually pleasing way is the issue for me. It always takes longer than the time I allot. This post inspired much thought. Thank you!

    • Party Prep certainly always takes five times longer than it should! And I completely understand about it being visually pleasing: I’m making a lego cake out of fondant icing and the bricks I’ve made so far using a mold are just awful. I’m trying to remember I’m only out to please my son, not win Great British Bake Off! 🙂
      Thank you for understanding, it always helps not to feel alone.

  2. Straight up, if you’re on antibiotics for that ear infection they could explain a big part of the bleh feeling. They always do that to me anyway. Whatever’s causing it I hope you feel more energised soon and in the meantime try not to worry about it – so easy to say, so much harder to do.



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