Dear Friends, Sorry I Haven't Replied
"Sorry it took so long to reply" is probably the most used phrase in my Messenger feed.
I am especially sorry to my friends without kids. I know it doesn't make sense, and probably feels like I've forgotten you, or that I don't like you, or that I'm just rude. You might even think I don't have time for friends without kids, as if I've moved on in my life.
But the truth is, I think about you every day and wish I could just reply today. I miss you so much. I miss our chats, I miss our catch ups, I miss our laughs, I miss our D&Ms, I miss our conversations which are so entertaining and insightful that "we should have a podcast". I miss having the freedom to reply. I miss having the time. And I miss being able to talk for five minutes without mentioning anything related to babies.
The truth is, I just can't get to it. I rarely sit down for more than five minutes at a time before someone needs me immediately. Any time I have a genuine chance at time without children, it is usually filled by essentials first - clean up the dishes, wash the nappies and clothes, prepare snacks for tomorrow, go to the toilet, and maybe even (!) have a shower. Also on the list is to acknowledge my husband's presence at some point - to try to give him five minutes conversation at least once a day. Everyone says 'self-care' is so important, and sometimes I need to read a book or have a cup of tea without going on Facebook, literally for my sanity and actual wellbeing.
Sometimes I'm so exhausted I fall asleep on the floor. If I’m lucky.
So I'm sorry I haven't replied. I am waiting for the chance to 'reply properly'. One day.
In fact, I probably want to reply more than you want to hear from me. So please don't give up on me. One day I will re-emerge from this bubble of busyness and sheer exhaustion. I can't wait to see you. And if by then you're in the bubble yourself, well then I will be on the outside waiting - as long as it takes.