My name is Lucy Keeling, and I am writing this blog post, to tell you that my amazing Superhero Powers might be on the fritz.

As I sit here, typing at my kitchen table, I am Lucy the Author, tackling one word at a time. Earlier today I was Lucy the Mummy, talking with other mummies about being a mummy, and how much CBeebies is too much. (I still don’t have an answer on this one). Tomorrow, I get to be Lucy the Public Sector worker, where I marvel people with my Corporate Double Speak. I have other guises too, Lucy the Wife, Lucy the Friend, Lucy the Sister, Lucy the Perpetually Exhausted etc.

I am not the first to be a part-time mum and part-time worker, with part-time ambitions, and I will not be the last. You could argue that I have the best of both worlds, and on a Tuesday evening when the kids have been particularly spirited (feral) you’re right. I can’t wait to get my Professional Costume on, the one that is clean and not covered in kid snot and other miscellaneous grossness. I look forward to driving to work and listening to the radio or podcast, basically anything that isn’t the nursery rhyme playlist that has forever ruined my previously cool looking Spotify home page. But then I get to my desk…

Whilst I may look like Lucy the Public Sector Worker, my brain is still trying to get up to speed. I wait for my emails to load, but my mind is still thinking about whether or not my eldest is having too much screen time, is my youngest walking about confidently at nursery and I’m missing it? Were they ok at drop off with daddy? But look, there’s eighty new emails and from a quick glance I can tell a good chunk of them are urgently demanding responses today, and I can’t help but groan out loud. My brain still trying to shift gears. I just hope that my manager understands (I’m very lucky that she does).

By the time Friday comes around Lucy the Public Sector Worker is well and firmly in control, she’s cleared the emails, she’s blasted away at the problems, and she’s achieving her goals. Go girl. The best news is, I get to finish at lunchtime. Yay. Work week finished.

"The guilt at not being able to switch from one guise to the other seamlessly, nibbles at the edges of my consciousness, preventing the sleep that I so desperately crave."
Lucy Keeling

Then I get home, and suddenly, without warning, my children want feeding, the clothes washing is out of control, the house looks like it is halfway through being demolished and despite my best efforts my children are not responding to my polite yet assertive tone. That’s because I’m still Lucy the Public Sector Worker and I need to put Lucy the Mummy back into action, but I can’t find her right away, and in the meantime my strongly worded email isn’t quite cutting it.  

I have a few minutes when they’ve gone to bed and I can check my social media, and like looking through a window, my little hands smushed up against the cold glass, I watch what everyone else has been doing, maybe just a little bit envious at everyone else’s perfectly polished lives.

But what about the other Lucy’s? Well unless my friends and family have called the Batphone, there’s every chance that I haven’t responded to txts, or whatapp’s or any other notification, and I haven’t spent any time with my husband in ages. So Lucy the Friend, Lucy the Wife, they’ve all fallen by the wayside, and I can only hope that at some point I get to be those too, but right now I’m exhausted and all I actually want to be is Lucy the Sleeping.

The guilt at not being able to switch from one guise to the other seamlessly, nibbles at the edges of my consciousness, preventing the sleep that I so desperately crave. But then I remember, that my friends and family are Superheroes themselves. They are constantly switching from one Costume to another, just as I am, and I turn over and drift off knowing that they will forgive me for not responding right away, because we are all in it together.

We are The League of Perpetually Tired Superheroes. Or, TLPTS. Well, we’re working on a new name, but frankly we’ve not been able to put a date in for the first meeting, but we will eventually.

((Sleeping soundly… Author Lucy has a really amazing idea for a story, and it HAS to be written down, and now Lucy the Sleeping just wants to kick Lucy the Author’s ass.))

This is a featured guest blog, written by Lucy Keeling. She can be found on Twitter here.

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