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  • Writer's picturegalpod

Playing Catch Up

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My mom and sister (and baby nephew!) are visiting, and staying with us in London. I love it when my family comes to visit. My friends always look at me as if I'm from another planet, which is entirely plausible. But I do. I love spending time with my family, being a tourist in London with them. I rarely do it when they're not here, which is a shame. I also love just hanging out with my mom and my sister. There's something about spending several full days together that strengthens the bond in ways even daily phone calls can't.

The only thing is, when my family comes for a visit, everything else goes out the window. Before they arrived, I planned to get up earlier than usual and get an hour of writing in before we start the day. It didn't happen. It didn't happen because I was too exhausted most days to even think straight. When people come to visit a new city, they want to see ALL of it, and London is pretty big. So I've had intense days and I just can't even. Luckily I had a thrilling bedside book this week (book review forthcoming, I promise); otherwise even my reading goals would have gone out the window. I did get all of my steps in this week though :)

Not only did I not write, I didn't even have time to read emails or follow the discussions I usually do on FB and Twitter. And now comes my least favourite part: playing catch up. I hate unread emails. I hate it with a passion typically reserved for much more critical issues such as mom-shaming (it really is none of your goddamn business. None of it) and pockets inequality (how is this still a thing?). And my email app currently has an annoying red dot with the scary number of 35. Now. Don't tell me that you have thousands of unread emails. Or hundreds. It's not the same thing. The reason 35 unread emails is worse than 500 is that I can actually get to 35 emails. If I had 500 unread emails, I would have deleted all of them and hoped there was nothing major. But if I have 35, I'll have to read ALL of them. And just that thought makes me anxious, and I can feel the start of a major headache coming on. I tend to fuss about unread emails (and broken rules).

I know. It's a silly thing to fuss over. It's a first world problem and a small and stupid one at that. I know several people who are dealing with much more severe issues right now, things like unemployment and addiction and illness—physical and mental. Even in my privileged life, I have much more important things to worry about, such as our visa status and taxes and my son's upcoming performance at the school's talent show (I had to brag. Sorry). But I can't control what my brain decides to pick on. I can only acknowledge it, laugh about it, write about it, and move on. So, here I am, sitting at my kitchen table on a sunny weekday, while the Western world is seemingly falling apart at the seams and people are shooting each other because they can't afford to get therapy and people treat each other like crap because they're scared. And I'm worried about the 35 unread emails in my inbox. But you know what? There's something I can do about these 35 unread emails, which is more than I can say about the rest of it.

Anyway, that's where I am right now. My family is still here for a couple more days, and I hope to get back on track next week. I'll do my very best to keep you updated.


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