Some truths …

by kath_red on 27/09/2012

in my life, Newsletter

This week I stumbled upon this blog meme things I am afraid to tell you, usually I don’t do memes – well never really. But this one caught my attention and spoke to me. Mainly because I too think that the presentation of perfection on blogs gets a bit much sometimes. While I don’t think I present a perfect front – I do of course gloss over the grisly bits. So here are a few things – some truths about me. Feel free to comment.

ps. This is my craft room in flux – I am not suggesting this is a messy space – rather a space in transition – I am in the throes of an organisational flurry.

I do indeed have a messy house — and it does annoy me even though I try to let it slide, I find myself yelling about dirty socks and cups of tea left all over the place — I don’t want it to annoy me, but it does. I have found some ways to compromise — family cleaning day, kids being responsible for their own room and bathroom — and me trying my hardest to not help them and not pick up their dirty clothes for them, husband cleaning our bathroom and me not being too anally retentive about it, I still keep control over the laundry though — whites turning grey is one of my bugbears. The biggest truth here though is that I am an inherently messy person — I probably needed to marry a tidy person, but instead he is messier and vaguer than me and so are the kids and I hate to have to be the tidy one.

I have moments when I crash and cannot be motivated to do more than the minimum to keep everything together. I had a few months like that recently, post-deadline depression, but not really depression, more like needing down time to recover from a period of high stress, high work load, high creativity — which I thrive on by the way, I love and need that adrenaline that comes with a deadline. And when it is gone I suddenly feel bereft, and all I want to do is read trashy novels and sit on the couch and drink cups of tea. I have to force myself to start a new crafty project, to make lists and do some work. I feel like I am in limbo until the next major deadline (which by the way is coming).

Motherhood did not come naturally to me. I love my kids and love my family — they are my whole life. But I struggled in the early years (and now those years are just a blur), I think I was afraid to follow my instincts, instead of sitting on the couch cuddling my baby to sleep I fretted about why she wouldn’t sleep, instead of enjoying the the oh so precious and short time of babyhood I struggled with losing ground on career and creativity. Looking back — if I could do those early years again, I think I would revel in being a stay-at-home mother instead of fighting it all the time. I am making up for it now — but the years are passing way too quickly, and I just want to spend all my time with my babies (pre-teen and early teen terrors) while they still want to spend time with me.

I struggle with my weight. And lately I have put on a little — which I will have to do something about soon. I love food and hate exercise — that’s the truth of it. And I have been awfully lazy lately. But the struggle has been a lifetime of self consciousness – I admit to having body issues. And at 40 I really don’t want to any more — I want to be happy in this body I have been given (short and round) — I am making a conscious decision to let go of body issues and take back control.

That’s probably enough for now – nothing earth shattering or gobsmackingly shocking — I am a (40 year old — yikes!) woman who lives in a nice house in the suburbs, works from home, struggles and tries hard to live an authentic life and loves her family — pretty ordinary! Not perfect, not glossy magazine stuff at all! Ha! Now what about you?!

Fun stuff and news

  • Latest Australian Quilters Companion magazine has an article in it by me!
  • Check out the Molo Wool Project by ClothRoads.
  • Did you know that Interweave was bought out by F&W Media — lots of staff have moved on and there no doubt will be more big changes over there. ”The immediate plans for Interweave include increasing the number of digital magazine / content launches through the Interweave digital newsstand; expanding the e-commerce, e-book, and digital pattern business; and expanding the live and online education and event business.” [Source]

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lori September 27, 2012 at 8:55 pm

love this post. exposing one’s imperfections just makes one more lovable. i hope. mine stick out all over! :)

i’m just bitter because you’re younger than me! ;o)

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2 Susaninfrance September 27, 2012 at 9:56 pm

I love this post! I have so many of the same issues. But that photo is neat, not messy compared to my garage….thanks for putting this out there.
xo

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3 kath_red September 27, 2012 at 10:07 pm

I agree – this is not a messy space – This is my craft room in flux – I am not suggesting this is a messy space – rather a space in transition – I am in the throes of an organisational flurry.

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4 Beck September 28, 2012 at 1:42 am

Hey Kath,
THANKS for sharing! 40 too (just!) and just say a very big thanks for your honesty, heart and what you share, both creatively and personally! You rock it, Sister! :)

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5 Zubeida September 28, 2012 at 2:50 am

Gosh, I can relate to everything you said above. Especially this :”The biggest truth here though is that I am an inherently messy person — I probably needed to marry a tidy person, but instead he is messier and vaguer than me and so are the kids and I hate to have to be the tidy one”.
Thanks for sharing this – it actually makes me feel more ‘normal’.

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6 Jo September 28, 2012 at 3:02 am

Reading through your post felt like I was reading about myself. I was not prepared for parenthood at all and wish I could have relaxed more. I have fits of creativity and momentum, then silence where even a sketch is an effort to create.
I definitely have developed an obsessive/compulsive streak. There is something very calming about having a clean and neat house yet I also fear that in cleaning, I miss out on a lot of the fun being had. I share out the duties as none of us got the neat streak in our genes! I do differ in that I love doing exercise, I just don’t always make it a priority.
I sighed at the end, a happy sigh for I think we have good lives. Recognizing that puts these little imperfections into perspective. Thanks for sharing.

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7 Peggie September 28, 2012 at 9:30 am

OH I can so relate! However, I am in my 60′s and have no one to clean the bathroom or other rooms! My husband is a hoarder, I am messy and leave things around at times, but when there is lack of space it is hard.
Thanks for sharing all this.

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8 Julie Petrella September 28, 2012 at 10:27 am

What a wonderfully validating post to read today. Thank you.

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9 Kristine September 28, 2012 at 10:53 am

Thank you so much for your honest post. It can feel like everything is too sunny out in the blog world and it is always nice to feel that we all share the same insecurities and lows at times and that life isn’t always chirpy. I could relate to a lot of what you said
(although I am a childless 40 something) . Thanks! ( and love your blog).

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10 Deepa September 28, 2012 at 1:05 pm

Loved this post, Kathreen! I am inherently messy, and also deadline driven. And tend to be lazy without them. I am very slightly older than you but have young children so my parenting experience was quite different. I loved the time with my daughter (5) and particularly slowed down and cherished every moment with my son (almost 4). Of course I will be in my 50s when they are ready to leave the nest! My house is never tidy but that is ok. I always have a crafting project in progress and encourage my kids to be creative.

They do say nobody wishes on their deathbed that they had vacuumed more/worked longer hours/insert regrettable activity here. So there you have it…we must be doing something right! :)

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11 momma September 28, 2012 at 8:59 pm

I am on the down hill side of forty and carrying an extra 40 lbs and my home is not too neat…..but I play games with my son, am chairperson of the school book fair, am hosting an extended family craft day. I think my priorities are right and so are yours! The kids will remember the games, the baking etc. not the dust bunnies!

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12 kath_red September 28, 2012 at 11:02 pm

thanks for all the super lovely comments and validations – you are the best!

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13 Barbara September 29, 2012 at 9:01 am

You sound pretty darned normal to me – which is why I faithfully read your blog every day. To be quite honest, I am tired of the perfect bloggers who are perfect quilters, married to the perfect husband with the perfect house living the perfect life. Nausea in that falseness. That is not true life

thanks for your honesty !

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14 kath_red October 1, 2012 at 9:16 pm

And thank you for reading.

xx
K

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15 Emily September 30, 2012 at 2:57 am

“The biggest truth here though is that I am an inherently messy person — I probably needed to marry a tidy person, but instead he is messier and vaguer than me”

I had a good laugh when I read that, because it is so true for me. In college I had a roommate who was super neat, and over time I got better… but my fiance is quite messy and I’ve reverted back to my old ways since we moved in together two years ago… and maybe even gotten worse! We’re two packrats in a small apartment, so even when the dishes are done and the laundry is put away it still feels messy with all the clutter we can’t let go of.

Thank you for exposing your real life a little. Your honesty gives me courage as a blogger!!

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16 jackie murrant October 1, 2012 at 7:41 am

can totally relate & appreciate your honesty <3

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17 Kristy Bach October 1, 2012 at 8:35 am

I dont know you but I think I love you! For real, when I’m annoyed with a project I end up rearranging my sewing room. It class my head and sort of makes me want to get back to work. I think I’ve arranged it 559312668804231 times by now!

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18 Collette October 2, 2012 at 12:43 am

Thank you for this–I read it at exactly the right time. In fact, I’ve read it multiple times. I sometimes get those Why-don’t-I-do-X blues reading blogs, doing the big compare/contrast with me always coming out on the losing end. (I just read someone who remarked that we tend to compare their best with our worst–no wonder it comes out that way!). Anyway, I love that you were brave enough to be so honest.

I am definitely with you on the crash times and then worry about being “lazy”–despite the fact that everyone comes out alive and fed at the end of it. ;-) I married someone neater than I but careful, because I tend to rebel a little (or I used to). Having a focused, driven, neat spouse can be exhausting for a creative, curious, willing to follow a tangent person. What? Speak from experience? Me????

Anyway, thank you.

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19 Olisa October 2, 2012 at 3:42 am

This post is wonderful. Clear-headed & realistic about challenges, but not defeated or lamenting. So healthy! I have stopped reading blogs that present an overly (and to me, fake) rah-rah message about how great and perfect motherhood is. And how every creative project comes together perfectly and is some how life affirming. Come on!

As a 40 something woman, recently divorced and starting my life over, trying to figure out how to balance supporting myself with living a creative life… I appreciate your honesty and it makes me respect and admire you even more!

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20 Ansie October 4, 2012 at 3:41 am

Oh Kath! I think you are my twin! This sounds just like me.
Except for the fact that I think you are far more productive and creative than me.

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21 Zoe October 8, 2012 at 6:15 am

Thank you for posting this! Struggles are so often thought of as lonely “only-me” kind of despair… its lovely to have a reality check and realise that I’m looking at everyone else’s blogs through a window. I am so messy… And i sweat the small stuff and i don’t DO enough… I could go on… But i wont. Instead i will suggest a form of exercise that i recently came across and fell in love with: Nia. Its a bit hippe new age, but i always leave with a big smile on my face and feeling good in the body i have. Its kind of like dancing in your living room, but with a bunch of friends who are enjoying themselves so much that they don’t even have time to look at what I’m doing. Fun.

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22 Zoe October 8, 2012 at 6:16 am

P.S. you should all check out Aunty Cookie. She is a very realistic mum from Melbourne who makes me LAUGH out loud… Ok bye!

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