I don’t want to turn this into a diary but it is entitled ‘…and stuff.’ so I feel empowered to write a little bit about something that I have done not directly related to writing. Especially as it should, with any luck, have a positive knock on effect on my writing (volume if not quality!).
I have been a school governor for roughly the last 11 years and Chair of Governors for the last four. Until last week when I decided enough was enough and I stepped down.
It had been my intention to take a step back and hand over gracefully and help the transition. However the last three years have been fairly stressful. At the end of last academic year a natural conclusion was reached in one respect and after the holiday when I came to pick up the reins I found I just had no energy for the post. It wasn’t that I wasn’t interested. I was and remain very committed to the welfare of the school. It was just clear to me that if I continued I would be doing so purely out of that sense of duty and it was also clear to me that the post required more than that. It needed a vigour and enthusiasm to move forward which I possessed intellectually but was drained of emotionally.
I had had some off line discussions with a couple of people, one a very helpful but challenging (in the nicest possible sense in that she did now want platitudes, she wanted real, genuine answers to serious questions) parent. Talking with her made it clear to me that there is a point where experience, although useful can be a drag on enthusiasm. It also made it clear that what bodies like governing bodies need is a flush of new blood every now and then, and probably more frequently than every eleven years!
So, a good decision I feel. Better to go when (nearly!) everyone is saying nice things and ‘please stay’ rather than waiting for the positions to reverse to where nearly everyone is saying ‘Thank the Lord! At last!’
I am content with what I did and where I left everyone.
What will this do for my writing?
Well with any luck it will free a considerable amount of time for the activity. How much of that will reach this blog? Who can tell? A decent proportion I hope. I also have high hopes of finishing several short stories and a couple of longer pieces fairly quickly, now I can concentrate without the telephone ringing or emails popping up that have to be dealt with NOW before going to a meeting for half the day.
Before I sent the email tendering my resignation I hesitated, wondering how I would feel after such a long association and whether I was doing the right thing by everyone. Now, after a week, it seems such a weight off my mind that I know it was the right decision for me. And if it was the right decision for me it was the right decision for the school and the other governors. They will be able to move on and others will bring different skills and talents to the table.
So onwards and upwards (might put my feet up for a week or so first though!)