I’ve always been a busy person, always taking on more than I can manage but it’s the way I am and the only way I know myself to be. Thinking back to as far as I can go I’ve always managed to juggle a lot more than thought capable from one person. As my boss said to me when I started a fair few years ago, “if you want something done, give it to a busy person“.
It’s times like these when I think back to my secondary school and detest the days I had PE, my violin lesson and cookery on the same day. Not just metaphorically would I be juggling but actually swinging stringed instruments and masses of boxes and bags (which normally contained eggs and milk). I’d be cramming them on to the school coach fighting for a seat and heavy with the burden of the day ahead. That’s not to mention the rehearsals I’d have at school, in other schools and groups in other towns – the social life I had as a child which I now crave as an adult – the dance classes – the acting exams – the writing of plays as a small child – the voracious reading habit I conjured as a child which I’ve now lost – the cinema trips which now put me to shame … the list goes on. I’m oddly melancholic and miss my childhood because for some reason I seemed to have more direction back then. I wanted to be an actress and I did everything I could to say I was. I barely stood still long enough for people to ask me to do something, I was already there and doing it.
Recently I’ve found myself doing a lot of running and not standing still. Almost running on the spot and I look back at the week and wonder what the fuck I’ve been doing. The time zones of the weekend slow right down and I have to wallow in my royal blue uniform and serve people with a smile which 90% of the time is genuine for both Saturday and Sunday. I get so motivated and intensely engrossed in my own work that I falter in other areas. As a consequence I do fall into the trap of being emotionally retarded at times. Having such a lack of social life and concentrating on my own work with no one to forcibly make me do nothing and relax can make for a dull Katie. But once again it’s the trap I’ve fallen into. Being in a creative field where the only person to put you up for something is yourself can prove tricky because I always feel like I’m never doing enough. And I know I am, to a degree, paving the way for better things. But with no real sense of time and accomplishment the nights get longer and the fingers tap faster.
I was discussing with a close friend the other day the notion that I’ve worked Sundays for the past seven years. For me the weekend denotes a strong sense of work because it’s the boring job I have to do to get me a bigger jar of pennies. People look forward to the weekend and I look forward to the week. It’s painful and tedious and all other expletives but it gives me the money which doesn’t last long. At uni if I wasn’t working one job on the Saturday/Sunday it would be one of the others that took its place (Ann Summers/Decadence/Ryman/Other job…). I’m a self confessed workaholic, I fully admit it. Whilst at university studying hard for my degree I held down five jobs to keep me afloat in money terms.
And once again I find myself in a position where I’m holding down five jobs most of which I love and cherish and still that one that gives me more pounds lingers around. Because financially it’s keeping me doing something, I wouldn’t say comfortable as I’ve not seen the black since before I went to university. Recently I made a big decision which has taken me over a year to reach. I’m going to be claiming my Saturdays back from the clutches of retail and giving myself a whole 24 more hours to work. Like I say, a workaholic. Although I’d love to stamp out Ryman completely I’d be foolish to give up the Sunday that gives me the more money. And I’m very much a person who has to keep looking back self-referentially to understand how far I’ve come. So come back round a year I’m hoping this will be one of my wise decisions and that I’ve been brutal enough with myself. It’s not a complete scrub out, but it’s a start. One that I’m equally sickened and excited by.