Rich is a dedicated sort, the kind that almost always needs to be doing something. I struggle sometimes to get him to stop and relax, or leave whatever job he gives himself and go out to have fun. It’s not that he doesn’t enjoy both of these things, and he lounges brilliantly and dances like a loon when given the chance. But he doesn’t like to do them too much if there’s something that needs doing, and Gwen always needs doing.
Nor is it that I feel any less pressure from my duties. I just give myself less than he does. It’s taken a while for me to stop feeling guilty about this, but I don’t any more. I know I need my space and rest.
This morning we woke to a glorious warmth and a brilliant lie-in, the kind of which we rarely allow ourselves. The sunny day was peppered with sharp showers that later turned to hail attacks. After breakfast we popped over to the boatyard for a bit so he could fix a bit of his campervan and got caught in a smasher.
From then on the day descended. We headed over to the shed with our own agendas, but Rich ended up watching (and eventually taking over from) me trying to sort out my bicycle for well over an hour. He’d hoped to do much more today – cut up some pieces of ply for our bedroom and remove the gearbox from the engine, but only managed to half-do the latter. This was partially due to my distraction, partly due to things going wrong (the electricity, the weather, the befuddling engine) and partly because of the indecisiveness brought on by his tiredness. I know it frustrates him.
We can let the pressure off a bit once I move on board, but until then he’s doing everything he can to get a thousand things ready. He works so hard all week, and will work out there again tomorrow while I’m writing essays in the warm.
When it yields results of any kind, it’s worth it, and he’s happy. When it doesn’t, like today, it isn’t. And you just don’t know until you’re halfway through whether it will be. I’m going to be able to start being of real consistent help to him again in a week when the Easter holidays start, like I was over Christmas. Until then the best I can do is try to cheer his frustrated head and get my bloody homework done.