My shadow work is done for now (see previous three posts) and I have cast off much of the protective shell I have carried with me for years – or at least I know the difference between the real me and the social-face of me. At last, I am becoming the woman I intend to be for the rest of my life.
I also got thinking about how I want the rest of my life to look.
Then I came to the grand realisation that I don’t schedule enough fun into my life. There is quite a bit of spontaneous fun as far as cracking jokes and being silly or absurd with the boys, but as far as scheduling fun times -nothing. Then I realised that even before the boys the fun factor was there but not regularly scheduled in my life. Time to change *that* I decided and I got to thinking.
As a family, we’ve managed to put the chores into weekend mornings and make time for adventures both Saturday and Sunday afternoons for the past couple of weeks - just going for a walk together or fishing off the pier for the concentration span of the least focussed boy, or attending school events and not straining to fit them into the day. But I need more: I work at home; I’ll swim alone; I often spend my day on the computer and alone.
So I invented something I have called Cackle Club (at the moment, this name could change) where many of the fabulous Napier women I get to see in passing can gather together on a regular basis for belly-laughs and, well, cackling. We had our first meeting last night. (Hastings friends welcome, it was just the way it worked out this time!)
There was the issue of my not realising that there was a rugby test on, which meant the pubs were full of rugby-heads watching screens and this in turn meant no seats inside the first pub we went to – and it was cold out. But most of the rugby-heads went home after the game and we had one drink on the deck overlooking boats on a quiet sea and then walked down the street to another pub, where there were seats inside.
We were all, pretty much, knackered. Many of us had been yawning as we left home and were joking that we were usually in bed before nine. It was quiet in the beginning, as people who knew each other caught up on news and people who didn’t know anyone else connected as best they could. Some went home early, the exhaustion of life catching up with them. But, the laughter came. The belly-laughs came. The cackling came. And the last four of us standing left for home at 11.30… It was a fun night and Cackle Club has already become a part of our lives.
We’re planning on meeting every three weeks from now on. Some people will be able to come sometimes and others at other times. We’ll make it work because we’re all craving a break from parenting, working, parenting and working, relationships, lack of relationships, it’s complicated relationships, mid-life crisis’ and general exhaustion of living.
The great joy for me was the pleasure on the faces of people when I invited them to come. Even those who couldn’t make it last night were saying, “Hell Yeah” to the concept and wanting to be told about the next meeting. The whole body language of so many of my lovely friends or friends-to-be changed dramatically when I mentioned it: their shoulders lifted; their eyes lit up; and their mouths twitched in anticipatory smiles.
Fun that comes as part of the day is great and to be embraced, I am passionate about mothers being available as much as they can and then a bit more when their children are younger than three years of age (those days are gone for me, so the timing works) - as well, scheduled adults only fun is essential for our mental health.
So, I call on you all to schedule some fun - gather together the most random group of people you can. Organise your first event today. Make a Cackle Club a regular part of your life. Today (Sunday), as I am full of a head-cold and barely able to keep my eyes open, it has been confirmed for me: Happy-Tired is so much more pleasant than Stress-Tired.