Dreaming of a Little me Time
have a long-held theory that any political party that introduced tax-deductible time-outs for busy working mothers and carers – preferably somewhere warm and sub-tropical with a swim-up bar - would be on a winner. Sure, plenty of people would moan and whinge about yet more middle-class welfare, etc. but honestly, forcing women to take some time out once a year to totally relax would return the costs of such a measure in spades. I’m sure the same could be said of most men as well, but they can fight their own battles.
Think of the mental and physical benefits, the boosts to productivity, the reduced downtime and sick leave. Not to mention the generational benefits of not having a screaming harpy wiping away the tears as she stuffs yet another Tim Tam in her mouth and wails, ‘What about me?’ loom large in your childhood memories.
I know that I’m coming to the end of the year in a virtually catatonic state, and I am surrounded by women who are as equally exhausted. Life is just so, so busy. Although, I am sincerely heartened to think that if you are sitting down – hopefully in
a comfy chair, relaxing cafe or in a lovely shady spot outdoors – and reading this summer edition of Ruby, you are very rightly and sensibly taking some time out just for you. You wise, wise woman.
From burnt chop syndrome to rushing women’s syndrome to the inevitable neighbourly conversations where you blushingly apologise for the morning tantrums only to find your neighbour was just about to say the same thing to you, almost all of us know what it is to feel the cup of life overflowing with stuff to do.
In between the tantrums and the exhaustion, I genuinely believe being busy is good for us, for the most part. It keeps our minds active and engaged, it keeps us socially connected and it goes a long way towards propping up our sense of self. But too much of a good thing comes with its own problems and I can’t help thinking, as I reflect on the rapidly closing year, that at some point this crazy pace of life has got to give.
Will 2016 be that year? The one where we actually grasp that long-held dream and make it a reality? Because all of us have that little voice inside that whispers, “I wish …”
So, dear Ruby ladies, my wish for you for 2016 is that you find and hold on tight to nothing less than your heart’s desire. I hope you have the time to enjoy the very best parts of your life, whatever they may be, and that the very worst parts take up as little of your time as possible. I hope you find the time to just be you.
To the French motto, that is such a profoundly simple reminder of all that is important in this uncertain world of ours, I would add:
Liberté, égalité, fraternité … time for me.