What the hell is ‘quality time’ please?

Sometimes life can be freakin’ overwhelming huh?

Without divulging too much there’s what feels like a ton going on around me at the mo, from a mum with a condition i’d never even heard of to a house extension and I know some problems are great problems to have, like the latter which I wouldn’t even call a problem as it’s mega exciting and I’m hugely lucky but sometimes balance goes out the window hey.

It’s made me think more about what ‘quality time’ means.

Some days I come in from work and hubs and I sit to have dinner; he’ll be on his laptop, so i’ll check my phone. I’ll be on my phone so he will check his. Conversation turns into weird little bites, sometimes random single words that the other person is supposed to decipher into some sort of coherent meaning. The best is when one of you goes ‘oh my god!’ at something that has happened on the phone so the other naturally goes ‘what?’ and the other one doesn’t offer up the goods as they are so engrossed, eyes flickering up and down like a hungry crazed loon at whatever is playing out on the screen before them.

This isn’t a moan, it’s just life now huh but I think it’s a bloody shame.

Quality time.

So what is it?

Is it night after night watching your fave Netflix obsession together with phones tucked in next to you too just in case?

Is it an impromptu suggestion of a walk together or a bite to eat out? A quick look at cinema listings to see whats on in the next hour at your local picture house?

Is it researching and planning a proper date night (or whatever you want to call them as MEGA TOE CURL SQUIRM) that you know your other half would love?

Is it your friend spontaneously phoning you and suggesting to do something that very day, just because?

Is it alone time, with whatever makes just you happy, totally guilt free? A book or mag? A bottle of gin? A bath? Fuck the to do list.

Is it a whole load of nothingness, free schedule, without feeling the compulsive need to fill a day with ‘stuff’ that means you have been productive or that you can gloat about on social.

It might be doing something for nothing, like charity work or helping a friend out when you know they are struggling with something at that very moment.

Does it automatically mean you have to enjoy doing whatever you are doing too? Like, if I took someone out to something *they* would enjoy but me less so, is that quality time purely because you are serving them?

Does it have to be a grand gesture versus a 5 minute, precious moment?

And how do we plan for quality time now days? With our attention carved up into smaller and smaller fragments and distractions coming at us from every turn, in my case via multiple to do lists saved in the depths of my phone. Have we reached a point where we really have to schedule it?

It’s got to be about attention right? We have to start there. Giving someone or thing our undivided attention has to be a good place to start. Hearing, not just listening. Seeing, not just looking.

And spontaneity. Another humdinger. Because one day we’re going to wake up and things might not be so possible any more.

I dunno, I didn’t plan to write a blog just now and this isn’t my best work but I just want to know what it means to you? How do you account for it with other halves, friends, families, pets, kids…yourself? I’m genuinely intrigued. Do you think you have the balance right? Does the term alone make you eye roll because you’re pretty sure you’re already great at it…but maybe just maybe…

Right now i’m looking at Rupert the saussie dog who is curled up in his bed. I mean he’s happy enough just there but what would make him 100% happier and in turn make me happier (less so the new neighbours) is if I simply get his new red ball and throw it a few times round the garden that’s what.

So that’s what I’m gonna do. If he rolls it in mud and walks it in the house, so be it.

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