Last Monday I handed in the manuscript for my second book. It has been a crazy few months since I was given my November 1st deadline and I am thrilled that I have made it. And forget the ‘I Don’t Know How She Does It’….. quite frankly I have no idea how I did it. I have three kids, one who is high maintenance and one who is a pre-schooler. My husband works around seventy hours a week, often more. And I have a ridiculously white house which shows every dirty mark, and after school activities every day of the week. It is bloody hard work, running a family almost single-handedly, and I take my hat off to any woman who can do that and hold down a job as well.
People often ask me: When do you write? And the answer is, every spare minute. I write the second I get home from school drop off, and continue until the moment before I have to leave for pick up again. Of course, as any parent of primary school kids knows, that often adds up to a working day of just five hours, which is insanely short. Once the kids are home, it is after school activities and supervising homework and making school lunches for the next day and putting something together that vaguely resembles dinner, before spending two hours trying to get them all into bed. And I haven’t even mentioned laundry or paying bills or occasionally stocking up on food so that said dinner doesn’t comprise of plain noodles with tomato sauce. Again.
Then, after the kids are asleep, it is back to the keyboard for another session of writing, before collapsing into bed at some ungodly hour, only to be woken early the next morning to the plea for “Chocolate milk and Spongebob!” insistently in my ear. And so a new day begins, and I’ll do it over again.
At least, I would, until last Monday. Tuesday, I dropped the kids at school and came home and surveyed my horrendously messy office. “I might just have a quick lie down before I tackle this,” I thought. Three hours later I woke in a pool of my own dribble. It was fantastic.
Wednesday I slept for two and a half hours. Thursday I slept for two. Friday I slept for an hour and a half. And both Saturday and Sunday I slept most of the afternoon.
I feel like I could sleep every day for the next year and still never fully catch up. As a working mother, my sleep deficits have run very high. And yet, now that I’ve slept every day for a week, I don’t even feel like I’ve made a dent. I fully intended to do some research and present you with some fascinating statistics about women and sleep, but it’s not going to happen today.
Though the sun is shining and my computer is buzzing, I am ready for another nap.
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