Time for some w(h)ine(ing)


I really, really need to have a grump.

I thought about popping into that Thai massage parlour I am driving past on a daily basis at the moment. It has an anti-stress massage advertisement in the window: Head, neck and shoulders for just 29€.

The place looks a little seedy. And I felt kind of concerned in case I was offered more than I bargained for. But my husband has assured me, here, in Germany, the brothels are well signposted, flashing their red love hearts all over town.

Of course, I’ve seen them.

As have the children who were mightily disappointed when I told them it’s a place you go to pay for sex not some romantic place of lurve.

And 29€ may be a special offer, but it’s still 29€ and WordPress, on the other hand, is free.

Plus, in the last couple of weeks I’ve spent enough money to finance a luxury cruise.

For two.

Dear Husband,

If we didn’t have kids we really could be floating off right now… Instead of buying new shoes, coughing up for haircuts, bankrolling the replacement of a full forest worth of necessary books, splashing out on bus passes, not to mention the half a weeks wages we had to invest on a pair of children’s glasses…

Dear Mr Optician,

I did not appreciate you trying to guilt trip me into buying a second pair of glasses for my child. I definitely did not appreciate you telling my daughter her current glasses are old-fashioned and need to be replaced. Are you trying to knock her self-esteem? She likes her glasses. She does not want to change them. She only needs a replacement lens. And you made more than enough money out of that, charging me 41€ for the privilege. Your glasses are well-over-priced. I have British TV and I happen to know that Boots are selling two pairs for £79. You wouldn’t even give me half a pair for that! Anyway, today I found a cheaper optician than you in the shopping centre. So stick that in your pipe…

Dear Baker at the Department Store,

I am very sorry that my four-year-old stole half of your cream cake with her hair. I hope I didn’t offend you, helping myself to your serviettes, but really, the cream was weighing her head down. And I couldn’t let her walk around like that. She already had chocolate smeared all over her face…

Dear Arrogant Chemist Bitch Woman,

I know that you said you would call me when the prescription was ready. I know because the prescription was urgent, and as I told you, it’s bad enough having had to drive back and forth to the hospital every day for the past ten weeks without having to drive back and forth to your bloody chemist too…

Dear New Teacher,

In his defence, I do think my son’s intentions were good, picking up that little kid by his coat. While he was dangling him, my son just wanted to let him know that it’s not nice to hit other kids. Unfortunately the little shit the youngster did not seem to comprehend as he just ran off and thumped someone else…

Dear Dust,

Please pay rent!!

Dear Family,

My son has been back and forward to the hospital every day (bar weekends) for the past ten weeks and not one of you has called to see how he is…

Dear Bloggers,

I am sorry, I am very behind on my reading. I’ve been so busy running backwards and forwards, scowling at discussing the merits of good service with chemists, cleaning up vomit, therapizing pubescent teens, running around shopping centres begging for ice to inhibit a black eye, explaining the black eye, complaining about the cost of books, guestimating the weather, badly – sweating in excessive clothing, or shivering in short sleeves, blocking toilets…

Dear Toilet Cleaner,

I am a little bit sorry that my daughter and I ran off leaving the loo in that state. We went with the ‘save water – share a flush’ plan. And it backfired. Miserably. We didn’t stuff the loo with anything untoward. Honestly. OK, we did, perhaps, I suspect, I confess, use more than the average amount of toilet tissue. What with periods and poos. And several wipes of the seat on the loo. I am normally a responsible parent. That time the little one removed all the price tags in the cheese section of the supermarket’s fridge, I handed them right over to the unsuspecting assistant, did an about turn and left her to get on with her job.
No, I did not leave you a tip, but to be honest, your services weren’t really fully-functioning, were they?

Dear Sore Throat, Migraine and Period,

Kindly, piss off…

Dear Santa,

I thought I’d get my list in early this year. I’ve tried to be good. Honest.

With optimism:

  • 1 – 2 Weekends away with husband but without children
  • 1 x Reasonably large Unreasonably large lottery win
  • 1 x New, improved memory
  • 1 x Large dose of patience
  • 1 x Small, painless op to remove all traces of menstruation
  • 1 x 5 x Extra hours in the day
  • Wine, a lot of wine

And I know I’m pushing it, but

  • 1 x unripped sofa

Dear Psychiatrist,

Tuesday? 9am?

59 thoughts on “Time for some w(h)ine(ing)”

    1. It was an in the middle of the night post, whilst supping tea to soothe my throat and with intermittent interruptions such as cleaning bedding and carpet in the middle of the night after a little accident (not mine).

  1. Aw, I’m battling a rotten cold, slept lousy and NEEDed this post to make me smile… which it did, a lot!
    Our household has a seriously similar vein of events happening right now (ok not the hospital) and keeping on top of it all is bad enough when you are health let alone, on crutches, with a head like lead and a nose resembuling a leaky tap.
    Himself now shares the head cold, just when work from all quarters is flowing in like a flood.
    Kids are small heavily disguised money pits… sigh, but what a different life without them, some days you’s trade in a flash others give you gems of moments that no amount of money can ever buy.
    Hope your next week is better! How IS you son? every day hospital… not good, not easy.
    Progress?
    My thoughts and HUGS…. kiwi

    1. Hi Kiwi,

      I really hope that you’re starting to feel better now. I can only imagine how frustrating and debilitating it must be for you to have been on crutches for such a long time. I do hope that things are improving for you.

      I think I’ve been spoiled somewhat in the past, being British. Children’s healthcare and prescriptions there are free, as are school bus passes. And the school generally provides most of the work materials. Here it is very much expected that parents shell out again and again and again. Child allowance is much higher than in the UK, but the costs are so much more here that it doesn’t cover the difference. In the last couple of years prices seem to have really risen too, but wages have stayed pretty much the same and I know a lot of people are feeling the pinch. I think part of the problem is also a cultural one in our particular area in that I don’t think that many people like to admit that they can’t afford something. Also there’s a lot of expectation of what to provide for your child.

      Two of my children have dyslexia – there are specialists to help but parents need to pay privately and we are truly concerned about signing up for such a long term commitment in case we can’t afford to continue. However, when you say that out loud, it’s like you should feel ashamed that you can’t provide something that’s necessary for your children and then you’re already a failure as a parent. Another good example would be shoes. You can sometimes buy cheaper shoes, but shoes of any quality are really expensive. I think a lot of people would normally spend between 50 and 100 Euro on winter boots say. I have four children and then there’s my husband and myself so I end up often spending hours looking for winter boots that are on offer. If they’re cheap then they often don’t survive the winter meaning I need to buy another pair and actually I would have been better off buying the more expensive ones!! have finally found a shop selling *slightly* cheaper shoes, who’ve given me a guarantee they should last and if not I can take them back. Last year it worked really well, my daughters shoe broke at the same time she was growing, we got brand new boots in the sale, new size plus 10 Euros back because they’d been reduced to half price!!

      Thank you so much for asking: my son is up and down to be honest. We hoped that last week would be his final week, but he had a couple of setbacks and so he has to continue going every day. He has had a lot of problems, and I’m not sure how things will be over the next few weeks, but at some point in the near future hopefully the right decisions will be made. The good news is he’s been carefully monitored and we finally have some support. Last week when things got worse again, I felt myself cracking a bit under the pressure, but my husband calmed me down telling me we now have options and that’s something we didn’t have before. We’ve also now met a couple of other parents in a similar position which has taken away some of that ‘Is this only happening to us’ feeling.
      He’s had lots and lots of therapy and lots a lots of tests. But the answers and ways forward a still a little unclear. I haven’t felt able to blog about it as yet, it’s been hard-going at times.

      Thanks for the hugs.

      1. Head cold is now chest infection so I’ve been not doing much at all in recent days, everything muffled under the weight of bucket-loads of pills.
        Still, my situation is temporary and yours with your son is not, so BIG Kudos for hanging in there.
        One Day at the time is definitely the way to approach this and Yeah!!! that you have new Dr’s a new diagnosis and hopefully completely new treatment to help take you on a new and better way of helping him deal with day to day issues.
        Taking doors off hinges is one thing to try and live with, physical violence and wanting to take his own life is *completely* another so I’m delighted that the medical establishment around you is getting it’s butt into gear finally.
        The 10 weeks of hospital visits are a complete pain but he IS being taken seriously and teams of people are trying to help him, (and indirectly you) to have a safer, happier life.
        Your son *needs* this intervention NOW and so all this running is only positive.
        My thoughts are with you as you continue juggling all of this, life like this *isn’t* easy but as parents you can say that you are doing everything YOU can to support and help your kid(s), this affects them all one way or another.
        DO vent here… let us know what’s going on (as you want, and if you can) even just moral support on a blog CAN be “more than words’, lift your day, give you strength to do that next hour, day , or week.
        You also give us an insight into what a personality disorder means to a family, on a day to day normal level and how hard it is…for everyone.
        It certainly gives my grumpiness about a wheezy night a BIG reality check. You make me laugh but you also give me much food for thought. Bravo.
        You CAN and ARE strong and you CAN do this… BIG HUGs and kind thoughts… kiwi

      2. I read your comment yesterday, but couldn’t answer it right away, it brought tears to my eyes.

        Thank you!

        It is a subject I find very difficult to write about, if I’m honest. But you’re right, the supportive comments do help.

        I do see a difference in my son. At least in his ADHD. He’s also trying to hold his temper, but it’s really hard for him.

        I think what’s making it all more difficult at the moment is that I’m pretty exhausted. I want to be able to do more and I just can’t find the energy! I’ve hit a time when I need to find more time for myself, but there’s actually no time left.

        It’s been beneficial meeting other parents too. We’ve exchanged numbers (you’ll be glad to hear) and I hope they’ll have time for us to meet up in person sometimes.

        Chest infection – not good. (You have every right to complain). I hope that now you have some medicine, you’ll feel a lot better soon.

  2. Just linked to your blog while hopping from others’ blogs. You had a rough week, it appears! I hope your son is doing alright, and the damn chemist finally calls you. And as far as the optician goes, you deserve someone who has a little business ethics! Shoot.

    Thanks for letting me stop by your blog!

    1. Thank you, Sarah! (I’m also Sarah :-)) for stopping by and taking the time to comment.

      Yes, last week was a hard week, but I felt a lot better after resorting everything in my head and writing this post. Plus, I couldn’t stop giggling about the hair in the cream cake.

      I always read my posts out to the little ones and the 4yo told me that actually, she also had cream on her chin!!

      I’m really disgusted with the optician. His selling techniques were a disgrace. In truth, I let him feel my wrath somewhat in the shop and since then I’ve been telling friends who are reconsidering going there.

    1. Do you think so? I drove by again today and I felt tempted!!

      I do have that floating voucher I got for my birthday and it’s one of my challenges, maybe I’ll do that next week instead. ;-)

      Next week has already started, I have loads of appointments again. It’s because of the school start and then of course the hospital stuff on top. Then I’ve had a few appointments for myself, which of course have to coincide!! Sorry, I haven’t visited your blog in ages. I will catch up eventually. ;-)

  3. The middle of the night is the best time to post and get all sorts of things done. Try midday naps to compensate. I’ve said it before, been there, done that, survived to have grandchildren. It gets better and better.

    1. I’m looking forward to the better and better bit. ;-)

      The great thing about the middle of the night is the peace and quiet. And you can’t use the time to hoover as you’d wake everyone else up. Though I do do the washing sometimes. ;-) I often have ‘ideas’ to write at night time. I’ve tried to train myself to only write during the day, but I have paper by my bed and often note the ideas down before I go to sleep!!

  4. I still think there’s a book in you adventures that most parents would get a chuckle from…since it would certainly place their problems into perspective…a very clever post.

  5. Very funny and well written post, Sarsm. You have a wicked sense of humor.

    Sad about the family not calling though . . . do they know your son is ill?
    Sometimes our families profess to care more than they actually do.

    1. Thank you so much!!

      Some of them definitely know about my son. It’s really true that the people who really care show that in times of crisis, isn’t it?

  6. Sounds like someone’s being having a really fun time. I love the way you write. Brilliant.
    A great read (I’ve shared it on Facebook and Stumbleupon, etc etc). I think lots of people ‘need’ to read this.
    Poor you. You need a big hug!!

    1. Jamie, Jimmy, Jay ;-)

      You are such a star.

      I checked my stat counter last night and keeled over as it read 472 HITS!!!!

      I went to bed and woke up with face ache (all the grinning).

      Best hug I’ve had in a long time. ;-)

      1. 472 hits!!!! That is amazing. I’ve been reading the comments from people on your post. You see – they all love it. Your day to day business is a HIT with the readers. I just reds it again……
        Great to be of assistance.
        Jamie, Jimmy, Jay (take ur pick)

      2. I know!! In one day!! Since then it’s been going strong too. Currently this post has 552 hits. I can’t believe it!! IT JUST KEEPS GOING!

        Thanks again. And I’m glad you like(d) it. :-D

    1. It was a bad day/week/month*

      But I ended up laughing too while writing this post. I also seem to be developing an odd twitch…

      *Delete as appropriate

  7. Sarah,
    You made me laugh and also feel fortunate about how things are going for me right now. We have lots of annoying/stressful/ANNOYING things happening but you are bouncing through it all with humor and grace. Thank you for the gift of perspective.

  8. I’ve had quite a crappy September so far, crappy enough to not be able to blog about it yet. But now you make you feel a lot better and I think there’s something in the air! I’m sorry this all happened to you. I hope you can get a break from it all once in a while. It’s hard being a mom but you’re a great one.

    1. I think there must be something in the air as a lot of people have echoed their own bad September. Good news is – October is on it’s way!

      Email me if you need to, OK?

      And thanks ;-)

  9. This is a wonderful post. I really felt for you whilst reading it, despite the fact I was laughing too. I’ve been having a bad month too but I know I can rely on you to cheer me up. :-) I’m glad you found time in the middle of the night to write it.

    I didn’t realise your son had been going in and out of hospital for weeks. I’m very sorry to hear that. I hope he’s doing ok. It sounds as though you are up against a lot of horrible miserable people. What the optician said to your daughter was so rude! I hate people like that!

    1. I’m sorry to hear that you’re also having a bad month, but glad to hear my post cheered you up!!

      My son has good days and bad days. In turn, we have good days and bad days too.

      Damn it! I forgot to go back to the option and pick up the lens!!! Yes, you’re right and I definitely won’t use that optician again. (I hate people like that too!!)

  10. Crikey, girl, you have had a very difficult time – but I’m sure your humour will help to sustain you.

    (The nurse in me wants to know what may be making your son need daily hospital input, how he is, what age he is etc…but can completely understand that is none of my blurry business so I’ll shut up :) )

    1. Sometimes I have to work a bit to see the funny side, but it really is what carries me through it.

      My son is 11. He was diagnosed with ADHD a couple of years ago, but even under psychological supervision and medication his problems have worsened and worsened. After changing doctors it became obvious that my son has more than ADHD. We were sent to the hospital for more tests and because of the severity of his problems he was offered a place at a special day clinic to be observed and tested. At first the doctors suspected he’s also autistic and/or has Tourettes. I personally believe he does have Tourettes because he has a lot of tics on a daily basis, like he smacks his head against things or his shoulder hits him in the face or he jumps up from his seat. The good news is that they discovered his medication no longer works and are now trying him with new medication. The new medicine really seems to get rid of the tics and his impulsiveness has massively improved (he used to climb out of windows/cook in the middle of the night/ unscrew everything (including furniture, the front door, the loo seat, anything that had a screw). One day we walked in the house after a nice day out and he just unhung the heavy living room door. He had no idea why. It took two people to re-hang it.
      In the last 18 months or so he started being aggressive too. One minute he’s fine and the next he’s flipped over. He goes into a violent or depressive mood lasting for up to two hours. He destroys things. Harms himself. Harms others and at times, threatens to take his own life.

      The doctors think he’s on the way to developing a personality disorder. This can happen supposedly to some people as a direct result of their ADHD (and the symptoms and therefore problems it generates). Basically, everyone is working with him at the moment to try to stop that happening.

      As you may imagine, over the years he’s been in hospital A LOT because of his impulsiveness. Like when he electrocuted himself after removing the antennae from a toy plane and shoved it in the plug socket. Then last year he had some strange internal bleeding thing going on which meant he was constantly in and out of hospital for three months (including a week in a wheelchair). It was a horror story that went on and on then just stopped all by itself. Poor kid.

      1. thank you so much. You are such an open person! That’s a whole handful of problems you have there, and I know one of the hardest things to manage is the feeling that maybe the other kids are missing out on parenting because of the one child who needs all the input.
        It sounds as though there is a positive move forward with the medication changes, but still very difficult. I do hope things will settle down to a more manageable state soon.

      2. Thank you Pseu!

        You are totally right with the other kids. I’m constantly trying to make time for them. Time really is an issue. That’s partly why their names and wishes come up so much on my 101 list and my sons less so.

        We have some great opportunities in place for him. He has a new place at a good school (with small classes and music therapy). He has new medicine and will continue with weekly treatment once he’s ‘out’ of hospital. What we’re all looking at now is if this is really enough or if he needs even more care on a permanent basis or if he can even cope with a normal school.

  11. Gawd! If all that is real..I’d have jumped in the lake by now…. You have my sympathies, not that they will do you the slightest bit of good.

    But if it will make you smile…I have missed you!

    Now I know that you were so busy doing all those other things

    1. Your missing me has indeed made me smile. :-D

      Yes, it is real. Well, except the Santa part. That would be GREAT if that part was real.

      I couldn’t sleep when I wrote this post – everything was turning over and over in my head and I just thought I need to write. So I did. Then as I was writing I thought of the cake in my daughters hair and I started to laugh and laugh.

  12. Very funny post…thank you to Tilly for showing me the way.
    I have subscribed.
    I don’t know why.
    My service provider seems to have lost my e-mail…they tell me it does not exist…makes one wonder why they keep taking my money.
    Anyway, it means I won’t know you have posted!!!

    1. Thank you so much for subscribing despite your email problems. I hope you will just keep coming back to visit anyway – your comment really made me smile!!

  13. Linda (Tilly Bud) sent me over this way. I always whore off her when I need a laugh, so now I guess it’s your turn!! I was howling about the optician, because that happened to me with my daughter, too (yes, they are just as rude in the States, can you beLIEVE that?). I told the optician she was into retro and that shut him up. Also, had THREE calls from my doctor’s office reminding me that “the doctor will not prescribe pain medication until you have been seen in the office” (and I had an appt. scheduled the next day). I told the third receptionist, “Who do you think I am? Rush Freaking Limbaugh? Some OxyMoron who needs to crush and snort stuff? I have BURSITIS!!!”

    I have since found the right medication and am more polite. All I’m sayin’ is, I feel your pain. This was a laugh and a half, and I must go back and thank Tilly for her generosity! Amy Barlow Liberatore, Madison, WI

    1. I guess you get bad service all over. Good that you stick up for yourself (and your daughter) and say your piece!! You’d think the receptionists at your doc’s office would have better things to do than harass you!!

      I’m so glad to have given you a laugh and a half. ;-)

  14. I’ve been reading here for a while and never said anything (just stole your copyright notice) but I just want to say that this is great. You’re having a really tough time but you’re handling it so well with the humour.
    And you read you blog to your kids? i’m going to do that, it’s the only way my teenage gits will ever pay any attention to mine.
    Hope things get better soon, and hugs from me as well.

    1. You’re welcome to my copyright notice. ;-)

      It has been tough for a while now to be honest, but it is important to find happy and funny moments, I think, it keeps you (kind of) sane through it all.

      My two teenagers subscribe to mine but I still find myself reading it out to them. I think it’s because I get all excited whenever I’ve completed a post.

      The amazing one is actually my son. He really loves my blog (especially the poems). Through his concentration problems, it’s often hard to have a detailed conversation with him as he’s off on another subject. But when I read him something I’ve written, he sits and reads along and really seems to get it. I would go as far as to say it’s improved our relationship.

      I say, go for it!!

      Thanks for the hugs – much appreciated.

  15. I simply love your site, Sarsm, and need to visit more often to replenish my often depleted sense of humor with guffaws and belly laughs! If I’m having a bad day (well, this Summer has been a bit much) then I come here and lighten up. I think I took my raising kids far too seriously at times…except for the time of water fights and they cried too much about my using the hose. After all I am the mother and I certainly agree with you on your wish list and I hope you get everything on it.

    1. Wouldn’t that be amazing, if my wish list came true?

      Bringing up kids is hard work. And there’s no exact recipe on how to get it right. My way includes injecting a bit of ‘the silly’ in every now and again. But if you asked my children they would also tell you I’m strict. (I know because I asked them recently).

      The cake incident brought about my largest laughs. I was so mortified at the time but found it so funny once we left the shop.

  16. Great post! There definitely is something in the air. My September has also been horrifying in it’s own ways. Mind if I borrow some of your Dear Santa wish items? I could so use all those things. Well, I have no husband, but a weekend alone with no homework and no child to care for would be sublime.

  17. Sounds like you’re rushed off your feet just with reprimanding the providers of bad customer service, never mind the kids. Here in England we don’t know we’re born with our liberal left wing we-might-tax-you-to death-but-most-things-are-free society. Hope your sons hospital trips are paying off and the future looks brighter and cheaper.

    1. I am. It’s wild at the moment. I’m already worn out and they’ve only been back at school a couple of weeks. I wish me a brighter and cheaper future too. THANK YOU!!

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