Keeping track of the days mark II

Tuesday night:

E was still up when I got home, as she was tonight. This hasn’t happened before – she’s normally been in bed when I got in the last few weeks. Now, before we go any further, obviously I like to spend a little time with her when I’ve not seen her since this morning and obviously I know that S or anyone who spends a day with a small child will need a break as soon as they can, but there is still a small amount of resentment in me as I put her to bed. I don’t want to do domestic home stuff as soon as I’ve walked in the door from work. I’m trying to be honest here, you understand. The thing is, of course, that S got up at 4am today to start his shift at 6am and I remember from maternity leave the relief I felt when he walked through the door and I could hand her over for a while. It’s useful to remember this stuff before saying anything cross or snappy. The 20 minute bus ride, that’s my time. That’s it.

E’s new trick is to point at her nose and then at your nose. You say “nose!” in an effort to encourage her to learn words and the whole thing goes on for ages. She’s also on the cusp of talking. There’s a lot of words in there and so far, they’re gibberish but I don’t think they will be for long. There’s all kinds of different sounds and we can tell when she says Duck or Dog ‘Dah!’, and she’s started with ‘Dat’ for cat (but also other things). Apart from ‘Mumma’ or ‘Dadda’ the only discernible thing she says is ‘Djus’ for Juice. It’s all quite enchanting.

The animals are mainly as she likes looking at the animal wall decals in her bedroom. Any attempt to dress her is punctuated with pointing at each one and you making the requisite noises and telling her the name of the animal. And then walking down the stairs you need to stop and tell her who all the people in picture frames on the stairs are. I like to do this so she knows what family look like as they all live so far away.

I made a lunchtime trip today to the library – always an error as I can’t possibly walk out empty handed. I’ve been taking part in a novel-writing collaborative competition and have been preoccupied with developing my character and plot for that but this, as well as short story writing exercises for my writing group, mean that the juices are flowing and I’ve got all sorts of notes for the other novel I’m writing. This one is historical and requires research. I took out nine books today – eight were research and one was for fun. This is in addition to the two I already have out to read and the pile of books in the house I haven’t yet read. Bearing in mind my only reading time is on the bus and just before bedtime, this is going to require a concerted effort.

All the writing manuals ever written will tell you the best thing to do as a writer is just to write. Every day. To make time to write. So I have been. On working days I find it hard to do more computer work (except blog posts obviously) so I tend to do long hand stuff in cafes at lunchtime or on the sofa in the evening. At weekends it’s easier to do on the computer. My chapter deadline for the collaborative novel is next Monday but I’ve done mine already and tweaked it and I’m pretty happy with it.

So that’s one less worry this week. But I now have all this research. And the blog. And some knitting projects to keep on top of. And I might like to relax at some point. If only as there’s every possibility I won’t be sleeping easily again thanks to the new street lighting (see previous post).

I know I could just stop doing some things. But the thing is, I like doing all of them. And I’m quite proud of doing them. Last week, I went to work, had a Creative Nottingham website meeting after work, got home and worked on emails and bits and pieces online until 11pm. And then the next day I got up and wondered why I was so tired.

The longer days at work need discipline. Technically it’s just a couple of extra hours each day but it gets galling when you’re the first one in, watch your colleagues come in and then they all leave before you. I get a lull just after lunchtime so take my lunch later and get out for fresh air then. I also get a second wind around 4.30 till time to go home which is useful, especially after everyone else has left. On Thursdays and Fridays I tend to get confused as to what day it is, and this usually carries over till Saturday when I wake up and don’t know where I am.

So, this is the second part of the introduction to this week’s blogging daily diary. Normal service from tomorrow.

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