There is an Everlasting Song

There is an everlasting song on my lips;
I got up early so I don’t let that song slip,
And mighty is the voice I’m singing with –
It beats out all the dread.
Defeats the hours of darkness


Sunday night I went to bed at 8:30, and slept through to 6am, felt much better for it. Dragged myself out of bed and did a little light email / slack while I waited for the kids to dress. J got an hour’s solid work in before breakfast, then I settled into a day of meetings, and general hell. Things breaking, AWS suspending all c5.large EC2 spot instances in their Dublin datacentres due to demand for on-demand ones (and yes, I know, that shouldn’t be an issue; I wasn’t the one who configured the affected system in the first place).

Managed to snatch 5 minutes to wolf down a roast lamb sandwich, rather than the leisurely time at the table with the kids I’d imagined, then back into the madness. Yet another candidate to interview, this one not so good, a meeting about CI/CD pipelines that I had absolutely zero need to have been in, another meeting cancelled 5 minutes after it was supposed to start.

Next meeting: team catch up, which at least has good news. D, who’s been down as interim Head of Systems, has been given the job on a permanent basis. We have a quick private catch up afterwards and set some time aside for later in the week to discuss what we want to do next.

Dinner with the kids was at least enjoyable, as was putting up the rainbow pictures they’ve drawn for the windows. Funnily enough I’ve been feeling a lot better about things today; let’s see how well I manage tomorrow when it’s my turn to be the work/child juggler.


Woke up, started working at 6:30 to try to get some time in before juggling kids and the office kicked in. Made a decent amount of progress, then sat down to breakfast with J and the kids. That was nice.

Settled at the kitchen table, one child on his Chromebook doing his schoolwork, the other doing colouring during my morning calls. Helped a little with the schoolwork, which was good, and had some really lovely pictures from the other. Prepared lunch while they were both doing “PE with Joe” later in the morning, then wolfed down a toasted sandwich during yet another call before a final stage interview between 12:30 and 2:30. J was upstairs, on her work-without-distraction day.

Got a little bit of time to spend with them properly later in the afternoon while cooking bolognese sauce for tea, which was nice, but I wish there was more to be done. While we were eating got a Slack ping from my boss asking could I jump on a call to demo some work to the stakeholders. Didn’t get to replying until an hour later, by which time the meeting had long ended; that’s the way it’s got to be right now. I can’t sacrifice all the time I get with the kids regardless of the importance of this deadline. It’s not who I am.

Both kids are generally unsettled right now; after putting them both to bed and talking to J in the living room, a knock on the door was followed by a tearful Sleeper Jr. “You didn’t give me a cuddle goodnight!”. Took him back upstairs and got into bed with him, eventually getting to the gist which was that being home is nice but he’s missing having other kids to play with. Eventually get him to cheer up by getting the remote control for the toy tank he’s built from a construction kit working; he chased me around the room with it, laughing.

Downstairs, J was worrying that we aren’t giving the kids enough quality time. She’s probably right but I don’t have a good answer for that. We talk through some of the things we can maybe do to help. . She heads off to bed while I start cleaning my beer making kit. Tomorrow, there shall be wort!

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