Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays are reserved for catching up house and school work. I wash laundry every weekday, a different person’s clothes each day to cut down on sorting time. Once I’ve done the washing and drying, the girls are responsible for their laundry, and I am responsible for Bob’s since he dislikes ironing even more than I do. I also schedule appointments on my free days—with my counselor, my psychiatrist, my hairdresser, and an occasional lunch with a friend.
We have a cleaning service come over on Tuesdays because I cannot cope with the entire house anymore. My kids are responsible for keeping their own rooms picked up and neat, and I usually tidy up quite a bit before the cleaning ladies come over. I know how to do everything, but I either do a slapdash job at it, or I get obsessive to the point of organizing everything in the kitchen, closets, or cabinets within an inch of its life. That’s bipolar disorder talking, too–an obsessive focus on the mundane.
On one or two Thursdays a month, I work at our church food pantry, handing out canned and dried goods and other nonperishable items. I am the youngest one there; most of the other workers are retirees. All of them know of my condition and are very nice to me anyway—a response that is becoming more common as the stigma of mental illness continues to lessen every day.
In between all of this activity I try to schedule an hour or two to write each day. Sometimes I don’t actually write anything except in my journal. Other times, like today, I’m so caught up in a project that I will forget to eat lunch because I’m so fixated on the task at hand.