The hardest thing about working from home is the blurry line between work life and home life. And when you’re a work from home mum? You have to physically draw the line, so to speak, because otherwise it’s non-existent.
Over the past few years I’ve come to realise that scheduling down time is just as important as getting the work done. It’s literally a matter of closing the laptop, ignoring the phone and its endless beeps and notifications and immersing myself in something entirely unrelated to work.
Yesterday it was the vegetable garden which, if I’m being completely honest, is more of a weed garden. Alas, there’s an abundance of curly kale (it’s growing faster than I can eat it), the beans are racing up the salvaged gate (now used as a trellis) and the cucumbers are heading skyward too, albeit at a slower pace. It is by no means the garden of my dreams but it is a garden, all the same. And as each day goes by I discover that the rumours are true; sticking your hand in the dirt is a very effective way to relax. Walking barefoot on the grass works, too.
This morning it was a yogalates class – more of a scheduled necessity as my lower back has been playing havoc this past week. An hour-and-a-half on the mat by myself. Precise and controlled movements in the pelvic bowl, deep breaths into the belly and 15minutes of total relaxation at the end. Essential self-care because I need my back to work without pain.
And then this afternoon when Percy started rubbing his eyes I lay on the bed with him and breastfed him to sleep. There was no fussing, no kicking, no trying to sit up and look out the window. Instead he lay still and content, feeding till his eyes closed and the weight of his sweet chubby body fell against me. Afternoon naps with baby are one of my very favourite things; a small pocket of time where I completely surrender to stillness and rest and the bliss that is a full-bellied, soft to touch, sleeping baby.
So: make some space and schedule some downtime. You probably need it. Don’t you?