Unsettled by September

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It’s now midway through September and rather than feeling uplifted by the start of the new school term, I’m feeling unsettled, frantic and dare I say even anxious.

I’m not a particularly anxious person by nature, as a litigation lawyer for 15 years you get used to arguments and anxiety and aggression, dealing with it in others on a daily basis.  You have to have a certain amount of steal about you, an armour that you wear when you go into battle so you don’t get hurt by the constant fighting around you.  Having finished that job around 18 months ago now (and working from home for myself) I wonder if I’ve lost the steal plated coat.  I wonder if that’s all it was, a coat that I put on when I went into work, and now I don’t put it on anymore, whether the little things can get through in a way they never did.

I’m feeling odd about things that probably shouldn’t matter.  Have I booked them in for too many after school clubs – should they be doing less, or doing more?  I worry that it’s selfish that I encourage/make them go to the same two clubs so I can work until 5pm two days a week – but that’s what would happen if I worked in an office, right?  I’m worried about their relationships with other kids and the fact that I don’t book in enough playdates – probably due to the fact that they now go to too many clubs! It’s a circular argument and something that’s been taking up too much space in my head since the beginning of term and I can’t seem to make it stop.

I’ve taken on more work and more responsibilities and I haven’t booked in enough childcare to cover this so I’m working late into the evening.  I’m at that stage where I don’t know if the extra work I’m doing is financially worth it, so don’t feel as though I can justify the extra costs.  I’m also now ‘just a Blogger’ but I prefer Freelance Writer if I’m honest, that’s where the job seems to be going with commissions coming in on a daily basis that need negotiating and writing and then invoicing and chasing.

I also have this overwhelming feeling that I shouldn’t be worried about these little things when there are far bigger problems in the world – you hear talk about Middle Class Mum guilt – and how ludicrous it is, and that seems to be what I have in a nutshell.

Add all that to the fact that I’m also feeling old and that isn’t helping.  September in our house not only brings with it the new school term but all our birthdays too.  Lily was 7 in the first week of September, Izzy and Eve are 6 mid-October and I’m 40 next month too – yes 40! How on earth did that happen and where did my babies go.

So September is making me feel unsettled, and anxious and frantic, and something needs to change.

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10 Responses
  • Sarah Christie
    September 20, 2017

    Do you feel better getting all that off you chest? No matter what we do in life there is always compromise and juggling needed, you are doing fab so stop doubting yourself, you are there more for the girls than ever before and they will be loving that. But you and they need a little time to have fun away from each other and 40 is no biggie it was my fave birthday ever. Stop chasing you tail and prioritise and if things dont get done it’s not the end of the world just do it tomorrow x

    • karenbeddow
      karenbeddow
      September 20, 2017

      Thank you love I think I do feel a bit better for saying it! I definitely need to be kinder to me xxx

  • barjerow
    September 20, 2017

    This is what I felt at 30, so you’ve done well to get to nearly 40 before it’s kicked in. Relax, don’t overthink the small stuff and all will be well. (That’s from someone who used to worry about everything every single day!!)

    • karenbeddow
      karenbeddow
      September 21, 2017

      Thanks I will try!!

  • Gemma Chedgey
    September 20, 2017

    Karen,
    I think it’s a phase of the school mum thing. I definitely remember that. The exhaustion of the summer replaced by the bereavement of school. Just relax and by November you’ll be loving the freeedom, dreading the xmas holidays.

    As for mum guilt, just remember that your girls did their part to better the world this year and you are raising socially conscious and loving girls.

    Have a fantastic fourtith birthday, you look wonderful and wrinkle free by the way! Looking forward to seeing the celebratory photos.

    Hope sept blues go away…..dog ???

    Gem xxxx

    • karenbeddow
      karenbeddow
      September 21, 2017

      No no no to a dog Gemma – I don’t need anything else to think about when we go away! Thanks for taking the time to comment though xxx

  • Lucy
    September 20, 2017

    Lovely post Karen – you should be so proud of your new direction.

    I recognise all of those feelings, as I am pretty sure most mothers do at some stage or another. I would say though I feel much happier on this side of 40…. the time for reflection has passed and now I am just going to crack on with enjoying life and worry (just a little bit) less!

    • karenbeddow
      karenbeddow
      September 21, 2017

      Thanks Lucy – I am proud I guess – and good to know I will feel better once this birthday is over!!

  • Rachel S
    September 21, 2017

    Oh God, Karen. There must be something in the air. I thought September would be a time for me to finally take on the world but all I’ve felt is a massive weight on my shoulders. I’ve not had so much time to decide my own schedule for years but now I do, I feel an immense pressure to use it and use it wisely and pack in as many things as possible. But last week, I felt completely burdened and I realised that I just want to potter for a while so I’m now pushing back on anything that’s not absolutely essential or makes me super happy. You have nothing to prove, you know. Do what makes you and the girls happy and not what you think you should be doing x

    • karenbeddow
      karenbeddow
      September 21, 2017

      You know you are right Rachel, I don’t actually need to do everything I am trying to do and don’t know why September has made me feel like I should. Off for a run this morning to clear the head a little!

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