Thursday 10 July 2008

Episode Three: in which claudia wishes to get off the emotional rollercoaster

After all the excitement of the weekend, both J and I have had a pretty bad emotional crash. (Of course, J would object to me using the word 'emotional' about him, but it's true). The last few days have not felt very easy. We were so pleased with ourselves for getting our form done so quickly, and during that time of rush we didn't have much chance to actually think about this thing. So it wasn't until after we put the envelope through the letterbox and the dust had settled that we started to freak out. Things that have been difficult:

#1 We had to tell two sets of people about our plans on the weekend, because we needed to ask them to be referees. Both were extremely kind and supportive, and this was great. However, when you tell someone 'we're hoping to adopt', what they hear is 'we're infertile!' and then you have to have the 'how sad' conversation, and wow, that is emotionally draining. (Especially when it's not actually strictly accurate). We've decided that, in general, we won't be telling people until we have some concrete good news to tell them - for us, that would be when we have passed panel and are officially approved adopters. (If. I mean if). Hopefully then we can turn 'how sad' conversations into 'how exciting'.

#2: One of our VERY SMALL group of 'people who know' decided to tell someone else, which made me so mad that my vision really did go all blurry when I found out. (For reasons above, I really want to keep this quiet for now). I really need to learn to forgive and forget on this one. I know they didn't realise how much it would upset me. And J has done some damage limitation so hopefully there won't be any real fallout.

#3 I'm tired. I know - everybody is always tired, so I try not to let myself say that too often. But at the moment my whole being just feels drained. I've been wanting to get to this stage for ages, but now - I'm looking forward into the next few months and thinking about the number of things we are going to have to do to make this all happen and I find myself wishing that we could take a break! I know this is crazy - we haven't even really started. Life always, ALWAYS feels too busy but it never feels like anything can be cut out. The first things to go in my house are cooking and cleaning so if I don't get some more sleep we're going to be hungry and living in squalor pretty soon.

#4 I'm photographing a wedding in a week and a half. This seemed like a REALLY good idea when I volunteered (almost a year ago) but seems like the most insane kind of foolishness right now. Of course, a year ago, I didn't realise that I'd be starting an international adoption the same month as the wedding! However, it's given me a great excuse to go and buy a proper flash, which is something that has been on my wish list for ages, and I really should have bought before now. This arrived on Tuesday, and I feel like a fool for having left this so long - partly because it is fantastic, but partly because it is complicated. I googled 'flash 101' - thinking that surely someone has put up a beginner's guide to flash photography - and they have- but practically the first sentence was 'Photography using a flash is at least three times as complex as photography using ambient light'. Oh, good. Ten days should be plenty then. Speaking of first sentences, the first sentence of the instruction manual for the flash said 'if the batteries begin to leak corrosive liquid, and this liquid gets in your eye, rinse your eyes immediately'. Very helpful advice, thank you Nikon.

#5 I still have to go to work every day. Obvious, but annoying. If there was any way I could drop my hours down to 0.9 I would do it immediately. One whole day off a fortnight! The bliss! I feel that if I had a bit more space to do 'life' things (eg, apply to adopt a baby, just to pluck an example out of the air) then work would get a better quality of me. However, that is simply not going to happen at the moment for workload reasons that are waaay too dull to go into. And at least work is okay at the moment, and that is a real mercy.

Errr, that's it for the moment I think.

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