Apparently, it’s all about age. The response from friends about taking on a renovation project is that Mr M and I are crazy or brave. No one batted an eyelash when we did something similar in our 30’s but now? It’s very different.
While our contemporaries are downsizing and pulling out their passports, we’re tightening our belts and rolling up our sleeves. However, our choice is based on the same premise as theirs; having worked hard all our lives, we’ve earnt the right to do this. We are feeding our souls. Isn’t this exactly what life is about at every age?
I confess I’d rather be wielding a mattock than lying on a sunbed. My day is purposeful from the moment I wake up until the second my head hits the pillow. I know exactly what I need to do; the main problem is prioritising from the long list.
This is very different from the last few years. Looking back, I think I was suffering from acute empty nest syndrome. The push from behind you get from running a family while working is a unique experience. When one side of that equation was gone, I felt that filling my days, my mind and the bank account was creating busy-work. Some women can be afraid to admit this, and of course many do not feel this way. However, I did.
Now I feel back on course. Just like running a family, what I’m doing won’t make me rich, famous, particularly notable or give me millions of followers. But I do feel a part of something again.
Renovating a 400-year-old building is a privilege and responsibility. What I do here will be judged by those who follow when I’m dead and gone, and the house is still standing. Doing this on a budget makes the task even more challenging and thankfully, more rewarding.
So I guess taking on this renovation project in my sixties makes me neither crazy or brave. Just very, very grateful.