For those of you who so kindly take the time to read my blog, I apologise for the rather long absence.
My excuse…? Well, to be honest, there isn’t an excuse per se – I’ve just been incredibly busy, thoroughly enjoying the Olympics and having a fantastic time with my kids and friends.
In addition, I think I have been suffering ‘blog fatigue’. And rather than write a whole pile of nonsense, I decided it would be better to abstain from blogging until the writers’ block dislodged itself.
My kids are now off on holiday with their father, which has given me time for reflection after the hectic first few weeks of the school holidays. I have been thinking about how different I feel this summer, compared to last year. I miss the kids a great deal, but last year, in their absence, I felt quite alone. This year, I am struggling to find enough time to spend on my own. I’m not complaining, quite the opposite, I am relishing the hectic pace of life – even though I wish there were a few more hours in the day.
Before the kids went away, having got through the excitement of all the end of term events, it was no time at all until the Olympic torch was making its way almost past our house, en route to the stadium. With six kids and four adults in tow, and after 20 minutes waiting, the torch passed us in a split second. But hey! We were there and have the photos to prove it! And I hope that in years to come, the kids forget about ‘being bored’ and waiting around, and remember eating ice creams and being part of something extraordinary, that will never happen again in their lifetimes. And of course, there was the obligatory party back at my house afterwards!
During the week before the Olympics started, I was lucky enough to be invited to watch the rehearsal for the Olympic Opening Ceremony. It was a fantastic evening. I’m not especially nationalistic, but it was definitely one of those moments that made me feel proud to be British - not just because of the show that was put on, but because everyone was so well behaved and polite. There was rapturous applause for everyone taking part in the ceremony and as we left, no one pushed or shoved. No one complained about being kept waiting to get onto the tubes and trains home – everyone just felt thrilled to have been a part of the whole event.
Having failed miserably to get tickets to the Olympics, we were invited to a friend’s house two days on the trot, to watch both the men’s and women’s bike races. Quite apart from the great party my friend laid on, having such a close view of the cyclists going past and soaking up the atmosphere was fantastic. And the kids loved it!
I have never been all that interested in the Olympic Games before, but this time I am addicted. It must be the combination of my starting to do triathlons this year, the fact that it’s all taking place in my home town and having friends who are really interested in it all. I’ve downloaded the BBC Olympics App and have found myself checking the tally of medals! On my eldest’s behalf, I even worked out the ratio of Chinese to British populations, to demonstrate just how brilliantly our tiny little country is doing per capita.
Sadly, this weekend it will all be over! But then I have the kids return from their holiday to look forward to – not to mention another triathlon, which the kids are coming to watch me compete in. So I am making the most of the kids absence to train hard and get some really boring jobs done at home – with the TV on in the background, tuned into the Olympics of course.
As I cycled home from a friend’s house the other evening, using the pavement, as I had no lights on the bike, I felt an extraordinary sense of freedom and lightness. A bit like a teenager! I have one more week to relish this feeling before slipping back into my role as a responsible mother.
I think this must be the first summer holiday I have had, since the kids were school age, which is going to go by way too quickly.