Tired of sirens

I am writing a daily blog (Monday to Friday probably!)  on preparing spiritually and physically

to lead a Pilgrimage of 100 miles in September.

for details of the Pilgrimage, click on the dropdown Cotwold Pilgrimage bar at the top of this page 


I admit it. I’m tired.

We’ve been back from the States for almost two weeks; not only is the holiday euphoria wearing off along with the tan, but the amount of exercise and the lack of sleep is beginning to show.

The first month of Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project, which I began in January, is a time to take plenty of sleep; and I started well - preparing for bed at 9.30pm most evenings, turning off the light well before midnight after a relaxing read in bed. And I always intend to continue the habit, as recommended in her Project.

But with a Vicar for a husband whose evening meetings mean he isn’t back in the house until well after 10pm and who then needs to unwind, early nights are not easily attainable in this household.

And the time difference of two weeks ago took a while of adjustment – in a deep sleep when the alarm goes off each morning but wide awake late at night.

Yesterday evening was no different. Husband out, due back late.

Except that, after another day of powerplates,  hurtling into London, running up and down the escalators (all right, climbing swiftly) meeting up with old friends, hearing the London sirens going day and night, I realized by 8pm that I was physically and emotionally drained.

So I was a couch potato for the entire evening and read the newpaper cover to cover (except for the sports pages) completed the crossword and swooned over the property pornography in Country Life.

My light was out well before 11; the Vicar came in late from a meeting and needed to unwind, watch the news, do the Su Doku.

Inevitably I woke when he came to bed.

There were sirens several times during the night. It was oppressively airless again.

Sleep came and went.

So this morning has been leisurely. Be kind to yourself, people have repeated to me over the past eighteen months. Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome, bereavement, depression – they each take time for recovery.

Sirens cause flashbacks; the number I heard yesterday while sitting in the British Library forecourt was extraordinary. Each one meant taking control of emotions, a mental readjustment, a not giving in.

Sirens are constantly heard up and down the Broadway; they penetrate our house, my mind.

I am learning to adjust, mentally to replace them with another image.  But it takes time.


So I am being kind to myself today. No pressure. And no pedometer.

We are under grace, not law.

A morning to go slowly.

Grace-filled, grace-full, grace allowed,.