Sunset in Swindale

After a lazy day, I did decide to go walk over to Swindale just to have a sit down and think. It is one of my most favourite places in the the world. There’s something about sitting on the verge of that valley and looking around that just cuddles my soul. It’s both calming and it also stirs up plenty of emotions.

I had a great and much needed chat with a friend on Facebook yesterday and it gave me plenty of ideas to chew through. One of the drawback of stepping away from social media has been no longer being in touch with goes on in my friends’ lives. But a beautiful thing that has emerged is that in the last couple of weeks, a few people, whom I haven’t really been in touch with for a while, have messaged me because they haven’t seen me online and asking if I’m alright. It really means a lot to me. One of the reasons I felt I needed to step back from Facebook and Instagram was that it made me feel so alone and isolated. So to have people notice my absence has been a huge surprise to me, but in a very good way.

Anyway, at 7pm last night I packed my notebook, book, some wine, my badass wine glass and a few snacks in my backpack and headed towards my spot. There wasn’t a soul about except grazing sheep. I found a spot that gave a good view of the whole valley and settled in with my book and a glass of wine. As it had been an overcast day, I didn’t expect an amazing sunset but in the end I think I got what I came for.

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I got back home just before 11 pm. Straight to bed and enjoyed a good night’s sleep. With all the thoughts that ran through my head as I was sitting there, one certain decision that I made was to buy a new camera to take better photos and transfer them in a better fashion.

Lazy days

I’ve been so tired lately. I feel like my whole body is exhausted. And today I decided to succumb to it and accept it.

It’s Saturday and last week has been pretty busy at work. Wednesday night we must have served about 40 covers, which is a lot for our establishment. It was pretty full on night making sure all the guests got looked after, getting all the orders right and trying to stay smiling all through it. I didn’t finish until after 10pm and I was back at work just after 5am the next morning. Thursday night was late again with some added drinks (because I’m an idiot who thinks she can drink on school nights). Friday was a again a 5am start (with a very bad head) and busy day of getting the house ready. Then I got a lift to Kendal straight after to do my food shop, back home for a quick tidy up, shower and a minute in the deck chair before heading to town for a few beers with Employer and the Monk.

I was so tired that I even forgot to put on my shirt for going out and didn’t realise it until half way to town. I wasn’t exactky naked butbI did feels like in in just my strappy top and shorts. Now that dogs are no longer allowed on the window seats at the Fell, I occupied it myself and I really struggled with staying awake as we sampled the beers. I really haven’t felt so completely knackered in ages. I could barely concentrate what was going on around me. It got to the point of exhaustion when nothing really matters anymore. I did seriously considered just closing my eyes for 10 minutes in the bar… just for a quick kip. I didn’t. But I was early to bed last night.

This morning I still feel tired but I decided I’m going to embrace it. I worked hard and I’m allowed to be tired. I’m allowed not to do anything. So instead I’ve been reading in my PJs on the deck, caught up with TV and genuinely lounged about. Normally I’d feel bad about it but I decided not to today. As I walked to work early Friday morning, the hills looked so lush and I want to play in them so badly but I also want my body to have a chance to recover. So when my Employer suggested dropping me off at Shap Fell early morning, I told him to jog on. I as much as I feel the need to be in the hills, I also needed to have a good night’s rest. And I am thinking about maybe heading to Swindale for sunset to catch the light and have a little moment there.

Until then, I’m just going to be lazy and not feel bad about it. I’m taking my first steps in trying to listen to my body and offer it what it needs. And today it needs a couch, loads of water, fruits and chocolate. And that’s okay.

Work talks

It’s been the usual mad days. The season has started at work and this means that I’m fully busy. We started with minimum staff for the first 4 weeks, then our help from last season came back to take a full-time position reducing my hours to somewhere close to 40 per week. Until last week when she told us that she’s leaving. Yesterday was her last day.

Our immediate reaction to the news was to down a couple of pints midday last Friday. Not the most adult way of dealing with things but seemed like a necessity at the time (which led to quite a lot of beer by the end of the night). We’ve managed to cover some of her shifts going forward but inevitably, this means that my work load is about to increase again. I will be doing every breakfast and every dinner shift from today onwards till early October.

I’m not too stressed out about having to work a bit more. I know I’m good at what I do. Last week, I had so many guests leaving and shaking my hands and expressing their gratitude. However, I know that I will probably lose myself in my work and it will be so difficult to recover from it. It will be difficult not to be empty and broken by the end of the season. I already struggle with fitting anything but work and sleep into my week and I know it’s only going to get harder. This last week I’ve felt so tired already and it’s only June. I’m not trying to blame it on work, it’s just me. I know that I have trouble switching off and stepping out. I’m a workaholic and not in a good way.

I am lucky to have an Employer who doesn’t take advantage of my inability to stop working. In fact, the only thing he ever tells me to do at work is to step out and take some time off. He keeps telling me that he doesn’t want this job to become like any of my previous jobs where I had essentially burnt out. Unfortunately, I’m a stubborn cow and hardly ever listen to him. It’s not in my nature to leave when everything’s not finished. I’m a team worker and I like working with other people. I prefer to work in an environment where everyone puts in the effort to collectively achieve the result. I take work seriously, that’s the only way I can have fun at work. So that’s why I get stressed out and grumpy when others don’t work that way. When others take it easy because I’m already doing everything.

There been many moments where I try to help but it only seems to backfire and I feel like I’m doing just more harm. I can’t stand not knowing what is going on. This is why I took over the job of writing up rotas for work. Well, that definitely backfired. It’s complete brainfuck anyway to get the rotas done in a way that everyone gets the hours they should and it all still seems fair. So, obviously when there’s an awkward shift, I would put myself on it rather than anyone else. The Employer wasn’t happy with that and we’ve had more than one argument over it. The good thing about losing a member of staff is that there’s no longer the need to play around with rotas…

All in all I feel the deadline is closing in on me and I have to decide what to do after this season is over. Whether to stay or to go. I’ve tried to be as honest as possible with the Employer about my thoughts and doubts but I am still so confused myself that I don’t really want to say anything. A couple of weeks ago we talked a bit about plans for winter and next year and I feel guilty about not knowing. I told him that I know I owe him a decision but I just don’t have one yet. To which he obviously replied (in many, many words) that as far as work is considered, I am not just needed but wanted. Which is always nice to hear, I suppose. However, as I’m trying to figure out whether to stay or leave, it does make me feel guilty about even thinking about leaving. After all, work, in many ways, is more of a reason to stay rather than the thing that’s pushing me to leave. I can’t imagine finding another job where I would be appreciated trusted as much as I am here and that would offer the freedom that I have here.

But work is also all that I have. I don’t have a life outside it and I am getting to a point where I no longer like that. I want to have a life outside work. I want to be something else than just my work. But as I have never really known what it’s like not to put work first, I’m not sure I know how to do it. I am starting to feel being burnt out and I know it’s not because of work but because of me. I love my job but I can’t figure out a way of doing it without it breaking me in the process.