Tick tock says the clock but will there be a beep?

It is 2am! And there’s been a disaster! A calamity!

Sorry. I’ve swallowed a Mr Man book  been reading Mr Men books with my youngest students. Which 30, God no… 40 years on… seem rather more inappropriate. Though, just like me all those years ago, my students adore them.

But I digress.

It started off like this:

My husband abandoned me in the living room.

OK. OK. He left me  watching TV on the sofa. Where I started to nod, then drift… And the next thing I knew, I shot, bolt upright, only to discover that I was splattered with my own dribble.

I staggered through the living room, into the kitchen and desperately tried to remember exactly which medicine I should take and in which order. And not to take any of those correct medicines twice. Or even thrice. And not to take anyone else’s medicines by mistake. After all these years on the planet, I am finally getting used to myself and my own funny ways. I staggered and I blinked and I filled a glass with water. But in the time between the glass moving from the tap to my lips, a suicidal fruit fly had nose-dived into my water and appeared to be drowning.

I blinked a lot more. Yes. It was definitely a fruit fly. So, I calmly emptied the glass, rinsed and repeated. This time, luckily, without the invasion.

I wrote  a quick note for my son, said goodnight to a 20-something, fed the bewildered dog and pottered upstairs to the bathroom where I got into an argument with my own pubic hair. Don’t ask. It was all a bit icky.

Then I tried to find my bed in the dark.

I’ve eaten thousands and thousands of carrots in my lifetime. But they have done me absolutely no good. I have basically no night vision. Normally, I repeatedly switch my Fitbit on in an attempt to shine a light on the whereabouts of my bed (which helps somewhat, although I still stand on or walk into various items in the room, just less regularly. But that’s not so bad any more as my clever husband now wears earplugs to bed and so is rarely disturbed by my frequent shrieking/swearing/banging). But I had accidentally left my Fitbit charging in the car…

I clambered into bed and slapped around my bedside table in my nightly ‘alarm clock search’ routine. As usual, I knocked over the clock then picked it up again and pressed the snooze button down to see the time setting. Due to my acute night vision deficiency this is a repeated action. Without it, I can’t see the buttons or the changing numbers.  I altered my wake up time and I wanted to double-check I’d got it right. I’m a double-check kind of person. The simple fact is that I don’t trust my own brain.

I pushed on the snooze button and the snooze button stayed pushed. As in, it didn’t pop back up.

I pushed and I pushed and then, in desperation I attempted several pulls, with varying techniques. I even put the actual bedside light on to help me with my situation. But to no avail. The pushed button remained disconcertingly pushed.

Would the light remain on?

Would the battery wear out?

Would the alarm go off or would it believe, that in that very moment, when it had intended to beep, that I could possibly have simultaneously hit its snooze button?

And if that should be the case, would it live in some kind of limbo? Convinced that my finger hovered over its button?

Black Friday over by just a mere two hours and I had managed to incapacitate my alarm clock.

I looked over at my Mr Fix-It. Sleeping soundly. I didn’t dare to wake him with my conundrum.

Especially as he’d reminded me, before he went to bed, that I had woken him up at some ungodly hour, excitedly showing him a few early Black Friday deals.

Will I wake on time in the morning?

Should I brave the minus temperatures in my nightshirt and rescue my Fitbit from the car?

Will I ever get back to sleep?

Such a misfortune! What a calamity! A bloody disaster!




Old-ageing alert

Bloody cripes.

I just caught sight of myself in the mirror.

I have herpes. Twice. That means I look like I’m doing a pretty good  impression of the Joker.

My grey has finally rejected my hair dye completely and is stubbornly and proudly making a horrific appearance. As if that’s not bad enough, my thinning hair point blank refuses to be brushed into any even mildly orderly style. It can’t even decide if it wants to look greasy or dry. And I only just washed it.

WHOLE SHOPPING BAGS have attached themselves under my eyes and I look like I have hardly slept for a month. To be fair, I have been burning the candle at both ends somewhat, and suffering from only short bursts of sleep.

On the other hand, my skin looks as if it has been slept in for a whole week…

I’ve done the best I could with what I’m left with. I’ve attempted to yell, pull and drag my hair into submission. I’ve thrust my ever increasing girth into ‘nice clothes’. And I’ve slathered my face with that expensive cream my daughter bought me.

And I swore at the mirror!

Still, on the plus side, my husband still seems to approve.

Shhh! Don’t tell him he’s due a trip to the optician!

Ageing without dignity

In ageing I am not triumphant. Soon I will have ‘accomplished’ my coup of 38 years on the planet. Although, being honest, it doesn’t feel to me, to be much of an accomplishment.

I have, throughout the years, of course, achieved much. I can walk and talk. I have friends. I’ve passed exams. I have four children and a husband. I own a mortgage (jointly, admittedly). I have learned to drive. I’ve held various jobs. I have travelled.

But nowadays, I have the feeling, I have not only reached my peak, but I have surpassed it.

It’s a combination of little things. But they add up. For example, I wake up in the mornings and the first question of the day should be, “Where hurts today, darling?” The answer would vary. A multiple choice approach could even be applied:

Question: Which body part is noticeably painful this morning, is it…

a. your head?

b. your knee?

c. your back?

d. your foot?

e. your stomach?

f. your ear?

g. a combination of a and b?

h. a combination of c, d, and e?

i. None of the above?

j. All of the above?

k. Something not mentioned above?

l. All of the above mentioned and a new source?

m. Should I just put you out of your misery and shoot you?

The truth of the matter is that I will soon be 38, which in my mind, at least, is not so old, but as my forties approach, I just notice I am speedily degrading…

For instance:

Last year both my eyes and ears deteriorated. Meaning not only without my lenses can I not see you properly, but I also have no clue what you’re saying to me.

For instance:

My ankle clicks. My knee clicks. And most of me cracks or creaks. A walk downstairs and I sound like I’ve started my very own band. I am for the first time in my life, musical.

For instance:

A necessary requirement is always to be close to a loo. No matter where I go, I need to find out where the nearest toilet is located.

For instance:

I used to have a liking for hair dye. Now I have a requirement for the stuff.

For instance:

I have started drinking peppermint tea.

For instance:

Memory = zilch. I have no knowledge of my children’s names. Or even my husbands name. I have to write lists. Then, I forget that I wrote a list, or, I loose it. Sometimes, I cannot even read my writing on the list. Or I have no idea why I wrote the damn list in the first place: What is this list for? Am I going on holiday? Or shopping? List, you make no sense to me at all!

For instance:

I prefer to ‘do it’ in the comfort of my own bed. With no pressure applied to afore mentioned knee, stomach, ear or foot areas. Limiting the possibilities… Though, truthfully, mostly I fall asleep on the sofa, and awake, dribble dried onto my face and next to an uncomplaining, uncomplicated, though somewhat soggy husband.

It would be true to say that in general, I look forward to my future. To my opportunities ahead. To my children finding their way. To my growing family. To more time for myself and for my husband and I, on our own. To holidays and shopping trips and parties and all the celebrations that the future holds.

But there are some things that fill me with dread:

The trips to the dentist. The loss of my teeth. The pulling of my wisdom teeth.

Losing people I love. Death.

Looking in the mirror and seeing an old woman staring back at me.


I guess this is true for every one of us. Accepting the ageing process is no easy task. Sometimes, I so want to hit the brakes. Life is both wonderful and exciting, yet it is also tragic and unbearable.

I have decided my best way forward comprises the following rules:

Take one day at a time and see what each day brings.

Write the lists anyway.

Take all of the drugs offered by the doctor.

Drink alcohol whenever necessary.

Take lots of photos.

Enjoy the moment.

Dye my hair, again and again and again. And buy a wig if it does actually all fall out.

Not completely rule out botox.

Eat what I like. Especially chocolate.

Brush my teeth and pretend to the dentist that the gums just don’t bleed anymore.

Avoid the dentist.

Forget the word ‘dentist’.

Enjoy my new found musical abilities by adding the odd song.


Cry and shout whenever I want to.

Appreciate my family and friends.

Avoid mirrors.

Avoid scales.

Not completely rule out replacement body parts.

And finally, party wildly for as long as I can!