Monkeys in a Greek Restaurant

Right, ok first things first, I am terrible at blogging so let’s not consider this a blog post. Consider it more that I know it was about time that I added more content to the website, and the Facebook page and the Instagram too… I will. I mean, I intend to. I will do my best.

So, the reason that I haven’t been doing much of any of the online social media stuff is that I am kind of tired of it all, social media fatigue (is that a thing? It must be.) After the 12 marathons in July, I needed a break for me and my family. I’ve spoken often at great length, about not doing it all, especially when it is implied that somehow, I do (I really don’t). I drop the ball on things all the time. All. The. Time. After July I needed time to myself, to spend with my children and my husband, the 4 of them tirelessly supported me through all the training leading up to the marathons and then the marathon month. They are really cool people. I just wanted to be with them. So being with them meant being less with other people, in real life as well as virtually… and I am sorry to all my online friends, but it was pretty nice switching off for a bit and not feeling the pressure to update in any great fashion (30 secs to update Instagram seemed about the most I wanted to manage). I am aware of the irony of the fact that now I am updating to explain this, but yeah, I think it is important to say. We all need to switch off, drop the balls then pick up the ones that are most important to us.

To be honest I felt like I wasn’t so much as dropping balls but smashing plates like you see them do in the movies in Greek restaurant scenes… is that really a thing? Smash. Smash. Smash. Of course, this isn’t solely a social media thing, but when you have real life and then a little virtual world in your pocket pinging away with WhatsApp, and messenger and emails, and notifications and twitter (seriously, I tried so hard to get on board with it but that’s the most “pingy” one of them all!) Anyway, getting back to my point, on top of the 12 I spread myself too thin in terms of my relationships with people and I needed time to take back who I was for a bit, because while my social media feeds may imply otherwise, I don’t just want to run about all the time and talk about it. Marathons are great… and fundraising is fantastic, but what is also great is bubbles baths and glasses of wine. Or watching a crap tonne of cartoons with your kids, who btw are into Power Rangers in the same way I was.

Or potty training your 2yr old (and sending photos of his achievements to my husband. You are welcome, Darling!) Also, great? Reading books, and listening to podcasts … or mountain biking with my eldest who tells me to “keep up the speed mumma, keep it up!” as I watch in terror as he flies down the trails ahead of me… My house got messier, and laundry piles grew and the circle of friends that I saw got even smaller… but it was all necessary because I was kind of done.

I felt so exposed last year with the 12in12, and then the 12in1, and I guess I am not the kind of person that copes well with that. So many people were saying such wonderful things, but not all of it sat well with me, because while very flattering, it was hard to be held in high esteem like that. That wasn’t what any of the 12 was about. It wasn’t for my personal gratification, which made me feel icky in a way that I struggle to explain. (You understand why I am not a blogger now, right?) As the ping ping pinging became too much for me a friend uttered (ok she typed as she was also a “ping”) the phrase “not your circus, not your monkeys”. This was the point when I had to stop even trying to cover all bases, and deal with all the issues that were cropping up that I had no influence over…or a desire to be involved in. My own circus and monkeys needed me, the Big Top was closed (ha, that metaphor went too far didn’t it… dammit.)

That time I bought a jumper that made me look like an actual monkey.

I switched off my FB messenger, I put my phone on silent and now I even turn the thing off. Ok, so now I have a new issue where I forget to reply to people or I completely miss group chats… but y’know, balance. Oh and for your amusement, here I am in a jumper that makes me look like an ape.

Anyway, this all said, time out has done me the world of good. What’s the take away from this? I guess if any, just look after you and your monkeys. Now I feel like I am more myself and back to prioritising the things that I want to the most. 2017 was a good but stressful year, we achieved a lot and learned a lot. Fingers crossed 2018 is going to be even better.

Roll up Roll up… it’s still not working, is it?

C xx