Monday, September 01, 2008

Unforgivably Foul

I have been, it has to be said, unforgivably foul of late.

Bad tempered. Grumpy. Short fused. Liable to erupt into immense fireworks at the drop of a hat. I believe I’ve been attributed the nickname “Bird’s Nest” as a direct result of this.

Undoubtedly it’s all down to stress. Overworked. Underpaid. Pressure left right and centre. There’s nothing going on but the mortgage, food bills, energy bills, credit card bills, utility bills, child care bills... and Christmas is coming.

With typical good timing my web design business seems to be slacking of too. Work is drying up. Belts are being tightened everywhere I guess. And my efforts to find an extra part time job to beef up our income to a level somewhere above the bread-line have so far fallen on barren ground. See, things are so bad I’m even mixing my metaphors.

And should I even succeed in acquiring an extra job where on earth am I going to find the energy to actually do it? Gaah!

I’ve responded to this maelstrom of financial down-turns in a typical man-like way. Recalcitrant. Taciturn. Head down. Transferring my frustrations onto other less deserving targets – Karen, the kids, faulty household appliances, cold callers and anyone else who steps into my sights. With the exception of cold callers nobody has really deserved the amount of spleen I’ve been venting.

And I do dearly apologise.

Things have just got a bit much and the hill ahead seems somehow steeper than it used to be. I can feel my hair turning white and my mouth turning to ash...

It’s not a good look.

But anyway, the conclusion to this morning’s confessional is this: I’ve realized / remembered that the trick to surviving bad times is to focus on and preserve the good. Because the good remains and is always there. You’ve just got to keep seeing it. Karen, the kids, our home, our friends, etc...

But not the cold callers.

Never the cold callers.

15 comments:

Reluctant Blogger said...

Oh poor you, Steve - and your poor family.

It's hard to maintain a positive attitude all the time when faced with a long uphill slog. Be kind to yourself (and try to be kind to Karen too cos she must be pretty stressed about her return to work) but yeah vent at the cold callers.

Focussing on the good is a great idea and remember not to stare too hard at the big picture - focus on little things you can do or that are OK> If you get obsessed with the big picture then the small steps seem impossible to take. Well, that's what I find.

Things will get better. Having small children is hideously expensive - childcare gobbles up so much money. But it is a short-term thing.

Do you have any Premium Bonds? When I feel particularly broke I go and stroke my Premium Bonds (all £26 of them!) for a few minutes and dream about winning. I also dream about winning the Lottery but that really is a dream as I never buy a ticket!!

Big hugs xx

Steve said...

Thank for the sympathy and good wishes Gina, but I think you're right - Karen deserves it more than me! Tom also started his first full day at the nursery today, bless him: not being picked up until 3.15 which seems a horrendously long time. Both Karen and I were having butterflies about it this morning.

I myself don't have any premium bonds and only do the lottery by way of a syndicate at work... oddly I've never thought of buying extra tickets for myself. I guess my cynicism of the Lotto outweighs my desperate need for extra income - I am considering a bank job however if you know any good getaway drivers?

As it is I'm going to fill in a job app this afternoon and am considering approaching various agencies during the week. I might not have hit a six yet but I'm still batting...

Rol said...

Cheer up, you miserable bastard!


(You realise that was me being encouragingly ironic... or something... right?)

Steve said...

Thanks Rol. You've brought a tear to my eye.

No really you have.

The Poet Laura-eate said...

I do feel for you Steve (and also the pinch/crunch myself), though have not yet found a good way of generating extra income, or else would share the tip around!

But yes, sounds like you have all the blessings that actually matter, give or take a bob or two, so I guess you can do worse than count them and be nice to everyone except cold callers.

Just be careful where you hide the bodies :-)

Deirdre said...

the 'dont dwell on the big picture' advice is very very good...each time you breathe you are still alive - and all time above ground - however stressful sometimes - is so very much better than being 6 feet under....

Steve said...

Laura, that's what a patio is for! Seem to have lost your orginal comment by the way - it wasn't intentional in case you were wondering! ;-)

Deidre, oddly that has cheered me up no end. Tis much happier to be a miserable sod than a sod...

Brother Tobias said...

I too did the office lottery syndicate, just because I couldn't bear the thought of them all winning and retiring, leaving me behind (although the thought of a choice of windows and all those abandoned hole-punches was quite exciting).
Hang on in there. Maybe I can interest you in some double-glazing?

Steve said...

My boss is also in our syndicate for the very same reasons - he didn't want to come into the office one week and find us all missing and postcards from various exciting holiday destinations piled up on his desk... pity!

Can I interest you in a holepunch? One careless owner?

kate5kiwis said...

ouch.
but you all have so much change going on at once, so no surprises that there's a bit of a reaction.
how's karen feeling now that her world is so different too?
(off to check out the previous post lol)
X

The Sagittarian said...

Let me guess, the weather has also started to turn? One foot in front of the other Steve, something will turn up and in the meantime you have a a wonderful family to thank the little things for. I agree with RB...and odly enuf also with Rol.
Cheers, ears.

Steve said...

Hi Kate, Karen starts back to work today so is feeling nervous as hell. At least it's only part time though - being able to escape early makes it a little more bearable I think!

Thanks Amanda, I guess if enough people agree they must be right in their thinking. Unless they're Nazi's of course. Or Tories.

Daisy said...

i am sorry to hear about you being so bogged down at the moment...at times we all forget the big picture, what's important and how to keep level...the natural way to displace our frustration is on those we love the most (cold callers excluded, they DO deserve it)...the reason why we take it out on our loved ones is because they are SAFE...they love us...regardless
is it fair, is it right? no but it does happen...just remember to keep aware of those happenings an limit them...i got into one of those slumps one time and my son being the wise person he was at 9 years old sat next to me on the couch and asked me if i needed him to rock me...of course i said no and it was a ridiculous thought (i was really pissy that day)...he said he thought i needed it because i was not acting like i was loved and he always wanted me to remember i was...from then on when i would get up in the morning i would let him know i loved him as much as i did the day he was born by hugging him tight, taking the time to listen to him to at least hear the dreams he had that night, and by making up some really silly things to say to express love and get a smile...
it's hard to do...which i why i did it in the morning...before everyone had their shot at me...but i have discovered over the years that children do indeed live what they learn from their parents...and it's up to you to decide what lessons they take with them on their journey...

-eve- said...

*nodding* It's hard on your family, but it's good that you've noticed what you've been doing... much nicer if everyone at home was nice to each other, so that at least when you go home, you have a place to relax (if not, it'd be worrying around the clock...! :-))

Steve said...

Daisy, Eve - thank you both.