Sorry. That’s stuck in your head for the rest of the day now.
This blog is brought to you by our fab speaker and former teacher Andrew Howie…
Recently, I had the pleasure of buying a house and moving.
Now when I say pleasure, what I actually mean is, I had the most stressful, hellish, horrific ordeal of buying a house and moving!
And I know that this is an experience that is not unique to me.
For the last two months, whenever anyone asked how I was, I replied saying ‘I’m buying a house’.
And those who knew, just looked at me with great sympathy and muttered ‘it’s awful isn’t it’. Because they knew that the whole thing – buying, selling, missives, moving – they knew that every part of it is as awful as Ronan Keating’s cover of ‘Iris’!
However, whilst they looked at me with pity and concern, there was also a glimmer of something else…a slight glint in their eye – the happiness that they did not have to go through the experience again. They were sympathetic to my pain, but joyful it was not theirs. I think it is called Shadenfreude (I know this because of the wonderful Avenue Q song with the same name(go listen to it now(is this too many brackets?))).
The only thing I have ever felt similar is when I find out friends are having children.
When I find out that someone is expecting their first child, I am full of congratulations, love and advice. As I have been through the experience and know all the joy they are about to experience.
However, if someone tells me they are expecting a second child, I feel the urge to laugh and wish them luck!
With two children everything changes! You always have one of them with you. The regular conversation in our house goes like this:
“I’m just nipping to the shops”
“Which one you taking?”
I have discovered that ‘neither’ is not a suitable answer. Taking my daughter, our first born child, is also not a suitable answer.
In fact, the conversation should go like this:
“I’m just nipping to the shops”
Everyone who knew about buying and selling a house, knew already that my life was going to be hell for a few weeks and months, and all I could do is ride it out.
But here is the difficult thing, I work at Tree of Knowledge, a company knowledgeable about mindset, stress and being positive. However, no matter how much I knew what I could and should do in the difficult moments, I still struggled to do those things.
But I kept trying, I kept reverting to the things that I knew would help me and trying to get through each day as best as I could. For me, that is running, reading, gratitude and working. These things help in the moments of pressure.
And when they didn’t work, I tried to focus on ‘controlling the controllable’. I made two lists, one with all the things I could not control (who wanted to buy my house, how much they wanted to pay, when my solicitor would return my call etc), the other with all the things I could control – all I could control where my actions and my reactions and that is what I needed to focus on.
However, the last weekend before we moved, all the strategies and lists did not seem enough to get me through. That weekend what I really needed was to go see my mum and have a cry. I just needed to get a hug and let her tell me it would all be okay. Cause that is sometimes exactly what we need isn’t it. A hug and some reassurance.
And who better to get it from than my mum. You see, I am her second child, and even though I was definitely the energetic one she tried to leave at home whilst she went to the shops for some peace, I know she loves me more than anything (definitely more than she loves my brother).
And she was right, it was all okay. It all went through and here we are a few weeks later and everything is looking up.
I still feel drained from it all and I need to look after myself and get back to running, reading and gratitude. And I will – but I have a lot of painting to do first!