Femme de la Maison

For various reasons which I won’t go into at the moment, I have been a person who was always overwhelmed. With everything. There were many days, particularly in my early and mid-twenties, when I felt so anxious that I could barely leave my room, much less set my mind to reading a book or painting a wall or cooking a three course meal. I managed to hold down full time employment and I used to think that the very act of going to work, sitting there for 8 hours, and coming home was a miracle and that anything beyond that would send me to the breaking point. (I still think that, really, but rarely say it out loud…)

I remember being invited to a friend’s home. She and her husband had bought a house and it was decorated with care and good taste. Amazing! During my visit she got up and made lemonade and served it on a wooden tray, in matching glasses and pitcher. Again, amazing! I kept thinking, “how did she DO that?” It never occurred to me to have matching furniture, pretty glasses, or even to think to whip up a pitcher of lemonade for guests who might be parched on a hot summer day. Everything seemed so big and complex that I couldn’t get my mind around — life.

As a woman of a certain age, my extreme anxieties have lessened and not only am I able to serve food on matching plates, but I am capable of working in the morning and then doing ONE THING in the afternoon. Yesterday I defrosted and cleaned my fridge/freezer. Afterwards I was swollen with pride. I even wrote to a dear friend to gloat and she responded with support and enthusiasm at my incredible self-discipline and tenacity. And everything was just fine until I read this.


I cannot imagine what a chateau/guest house/conference centre would look like under my watchful eye.

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