After thinking I was improving on Tuesday, I got worse again. Yesterday was the first day since Sunday that I was able to eat without consequence(!), and more than a mouthful at that. Thank goodness. Now I’m pretty fatigued and need to build up some energy again, but that won’t take long. I hope!
It’s been quite a grim week though. Being stuck in bed (or in the bathroom) isn’t great for your sense of self and after days without food and just being constantly ill I was getting pretty depressed. I’ve missed a week of work, I’ve missed two stables days, I missed all the glorious weather we’ve just had, and John was working or away for most of the week so I was all alone in my boredom and misery. Got very fed up and am irked at not being at the stables today as I am feeling a lot better. But was told that I’ll still be contagious for a couple of days after the symptoms stopped (yesterday, who knew that stomach flu rumbled on for so long?!) and that it’s not worth risking everyone else. Even so, I’d rather be cuddling a pony than sitting in quarantine at home right now!
So I have emails to catch up on and am behind on various things. And yesterday I was feeling very despondent about, well, everything.
This is the year our studio lease is up (November), so we need to decide whether to stay on a 6 month rolling basis, find somewhere smaller/different, or do something radical instead. And right now I’m not discounting any option. I am considering literally everything I can think of, as circumstances have changed over the past few months. I love my work, but I love other things too. How can I best structure my life to include both? How can I earn enough money through Sparklewren to both run an arts business and have my hobbies? The business costs more to run than my horsey hobby would if I were to own again, but I can’t currently divert that money for the obvious reason that the business running costs haven’t changed. But they could change, if I downsize or something.
Our marina has sold the car park. We’re in the centre of town which is great, really convenient for me since I don’t drive (and don’t much want to), but it’s very expensive for rather poor facilities to be honest. Losing the car park just makes it even more expensive. Really we need to move. So now we’re looking for other mooring options (indeed, we ventured out in the car yesterday to look at a couple), but finding something that ticks all the boxes is going to be impossible. We will have to compromise on something. So… what? Some options would limit my involvement at the stables, since the distance is too far and I would only be able to get there when John was around to drive me. Some options don’t save enough money to be worthwhile, but at least they have parking. Some options are ugly, but the pretty ones seem to be quite isolated. We saw a nice, quiet marina yesterday, but it’s not walking distance to anything. I worry I’d feel trapped. Some options are great, but right next to busy roads and though we are in the centre of town right now all the traffic around us is reasonably slow. I’d be concerned about the cat. One option is near the stables, but apparently has no proper parking either. And lastly, nearly all of the options are worse for work, further away, meaning we’d always have to travel, you couldn’t just walk 25mins and be there.
None of this stuff is insurmountable, of course, it’s just a question of finding the best compromise. And we don’t have to be stuck wherever we go, we can always move again after three months or so. But it’s difficult, because should we be thinking of this move just in terms of finding somewhere suitable for now? Or in terms of it being suitable for us with our potential change of studio circumstances? The parameters are different for each scenario. Plus, if I do want to own a horse again I need to think about that. So do we look for places near to livery yards or does that wait for now? Do we look for private land for sale backing onto the canal instead? Buying a field with car access could be a great option as it would give us scope to grow as we wished (a shed/studio perhaps, a field shelter if I go that route too), but then that does feel more permanent and would require some degree of conviction about *where* in the country we are. Plus, we’d have to find/save the money. And I do like it down here, but if we were going to buy a bit of land should we consider other places too? More rural? Or a different city? Closer to mum and my brother? Or further south for better weather?
As you can see, my brain hasn’t been helped by a week of enforced bed rest. And the stress of being unable to work is always a reminder of how precarious self-employment is. I suppose I’ve just run out of steam this week. Getting sick has given my ability to hustle and problem-solve a good kicking. And that’s annoying, as what else are you going to do when stuck at home for days on end? All you can do is watch Netflix and/or research things. I guess I just need to make these decisions as simple as possible, strip everything back to basics. What do we need? What do we want? What can we lose without too much bother?