It’s not the move (or, to use corporate terminology, the international relocation). It’s not the scrabbling around trying to find the financial paperwork for discussion at mediation services (and realising you are about 4 years out of date with everything and your pension is worth nothing). It’s not even the lack of internet or frenetic preparation for school, while trying not to show your older son that you are anxious about his lack of confirmed school place.
It’s not even when all of your devices conspire to let you down all at once. Unrepairable. Making you buy new ones or inherit other people’s used ones and resetting everything all at once, on a new system, on a new service provider, in a new language and keyboard. Verification after verification. Forgotten passwords. I could have handled a single phone or a laptop or a tablet, but all three at once! Then discovering you have invested in the wrong new tablet, which does not support Netgalley documents, so more than half of all your ebooks have disappeared.
Let’s add a little bit of extra seasoning to that, shall we?
It’s discovering that your younger son has been a little too eager to construct his Ikea furniture and has done it the wrong way (and now those screws can’t be taken out without causing damage). It’s finding that your walls are not receptive to ordinary nails, but require power tools so you can’t hang anything up. It’s having your parents (mercifully at a distance) blaming you for other people’s unhappiness (past, present and future) but pshawing and downplaying your own. It’s waking up every morning with backache and worrying if you will be strong enough to guide the children through the heart-breaking months to follow. It’s searching for jobs online and realising that the ones you like don’t pay enough for you to live on, while the ones you don’t like require you to travel excessively and/or make people redundant. (Think George Clooney in ‘Up in the Air’) It’s having your soon-to-be ex-husband coming to visit for a long weekend and being laid up in bed with a bad back for the entire time (when I was hoping he could help me bring some things down from the loft).
In short, it’s waking up to cumulative and repetitive reality.
Luckily, I’ve now found another old tablet (long may it last!) and have solved my Netgalley problem, so at least I can have my daily dose of reading escapism.
On Monday, school starts. And hopefully, so will my writing. Now we’re cooking!