I sit and write this after my virtual Parish Council meeting on my sofa, bottom half in PJs and top half in workwear (blouse, not hi-viz and hard hat!) way past any reasonable time to be thinking work, and I realise that the merge has begun. That slow creep of work into life and life into work. I have always been a compartmentalised person – I like things in boxes, in order and in their place. That’s not to say that I won’t work silly hours when I need to, but I like control and boundaries. This new normal has thrown a spanner into all of that. In many ways its good – this morning I pulled up a carpet, whilst home schooling and jumping on and off work calls. But sometimes its bad, that separation that you need to be healthy, to have winding down time. The mania ensues, even when you have done time you fill it.

The diary is starting to get more full…how? Why? I should stay strong and keep this calm that was created in lockdown, this focus on the fundamentals, home, family and work (oh and horses of course!) rather than racing around….yet here I am the picture of anarchy in my lounge (with no carpet) and the realisation that I now have to find time to restore this parquet floor!!! Sure, easy. I will fit that around, my 5am starts for work, apparently getting my 3 years old ready for her GCSEs and home schooling a reluctant 8 years old, taking on DIY projects that Nick Knowles would be proud of, my 2 Parish council meetings at 7.30pm this week, my webinar from 8pm tomorrow, food shopping for 3 older neighbours in my village oh yes and sleeping!!

We have all had moments like this, they aren’t new, but why do I feel different now? This situation puts everything into perspective – I am finding the humour in this situation rather than blind panic – there is a good vibe going on in the world and that is to be embraced…maybe I am going soppy in my old age, or maybe I am losing my mind, but I quite like this new normal and the old fashioned personability of people. That willingness to lend a hand and muck in if we see someone struggling – it is good! So as we enter our 3,872nd week of this strange lockdown/not lockdown time, what have you learned and what are you going to do to make sure that you keep hold of it, even as things do slowly return to normal?

I am off for an elderflower cordial….of course home-made!!!