Friday 21 December 2012

You could still do Christmas if you wanted to...

Merry Chrismas!

It can get very disconcerting when your eldest (9) decides that you need to get a grip but that is what he did today.
Him: Are we going to have a Christmas then?
Me peering at him from the depths of my dog-ridden death bed: Urgh????
Me: Imberrydill
Him: But you could still do Christmas if you wanted to.
Yes of course I could if I wanted to but I'm ill see. I've got a cough which would make a 40-a-dayer jealous. I have a permanent headache and can hardly breath - I don't want Christmas anytime soon and certainly NOT at 7am in the morning.
I look at him through slitted eyes and snort. I would have sniffed but when you have a very heavy cold it is never a ladylike sniff its a full blown snort which then makes me feel queasy when I think what has just happened - it's no wonder I have lost my appetite.
Him expectantly: well?
I know that if I don't give him the right answer he's going to plague me ALL day and I'll never get any rest.
Me grumpily in a Bah-Humbug way: OK I'll do Christmas!
Him: Brill Mum you're the best.
He says that so chirpily I want to throttle him but he's off and down the stairs before I can shift the dozy pile of whippets off the end of  my bed. They do love it when people are ill because it means that they can stay in bed as 24-hour hot water bottles all day. Whippets love beds.
I'd like to say I stomped down the stairs and was very grumpy but6 when three whippets decide it's time to get up there's no time to waste for if I linger longer than they then I get the jolly job of having to clean up after them - dog owners of the world know just what that means. So with my lovely carpets in mind I shoot down the stairs and let the pack out and make my way to the kitchen where I am handed a cup of tea and told to sit down to breakfast by my boys who have clearly decided mum needs a bit of a hand.
You would have almost thought they planned it...
And from here on in it has been a whirlwind of a day.
Decorations up, cards hung, spare rooms cleaned and beds made in preparation, the dining room laid out all for Christmas Day and now as I contemplate a week of festivities ahead I find that my headache has gone, I can breath and it only sounds as if I smoke 20 a day - and that can't be a bad thing, can it?

Merry Christmas one and all!

Thursday 29 November 2012

A short lesson in relativity...

My eldest was busy with his homework; English Comprehension. The piece he was reading was all about the invention of zips.
“Oh cool! Before 1893,” he read, “you used to have ties, laces and buttons.”
“That must have been awesome. So, like, when you were young there were no zips.”
He took one look at my face.
“Ok then when Granny was young…”
Just as well his Grandmother lives in Yorkshire!

Saturday 17 November 2012

Death at 4am...

Something was wrong though in my befuddled state I couldn’t work out what it was. All I knew that I had just been woken. There was no noise, not really. Nothing untoward as such. So I lay back expecting to drop off to sleep again, wanting to drop off but something in my brain was on high alert. I lay on my back listening.
There I caught it.
A semi crow croak sound.
"Stupid chickens! It’s the middle of the night!"
But this wasn’t the right sort of noise. This was wrong.
I carefully got out of bed and tripped down the stairs to the landing whose window overlooked the wood wherein lay the chicken huts.
I drew the curtain to one side and peered myopically out.
"Bugger, haven’t got my glasses...."
I peered harder anyway but as expected I couldn’t see a thing, it was too dark but I knew it wasn’t right.
Padding swiftly down the hall, careful not to wake the children, I wended my way to my husband's room.
"Charlie wake up. I think there’s a fox in my chicken coop...."
The sense of urgency in my hurried whisper had him awake in seconds. No arguing for once.
I scurried down the stairs and grabbed my boots from the cupboard, snatched a coat from a hanger and as quietly as I could opened the back door. By the time I was half way across the drive Charlie was with me torch and hockey stick in hand.
We shone the torch in an arc round the huts but there was nothing out of the ordinary. Then the light caught a white shape under the Victorian Coop. Definitely a chicken and very definitely dead.
Could it have just been this one solitary chook that woke me?
Knowing and not wanting to know I stretched foreword my hand to the hut door, pulled back teh bolt and shone the light inside.
Oh my god!
It was scene of utter carnage but no noise. Dead and dying chickens everywhere, feathers lazily settling on the slatted floor and the utter silence. As I glanced about I saw Rufus my enormous Silver Grey Dorking Cross rooster slumped on the floor, I thought he was dead too but he raised his battered head to give out a low croaky squawk – the very same sound that had woken me only a few minutes previously.
He continued to utter his muffled alarm. Struggling to rise and slumping back to the floor again and again. I flicked the light of the torch round the hut once again and then I saw it.
A big brown vixen - it had to be a vixen for there was no tell-tale stench that I would expect from a dog fox.
She looked dazed and glazed, not scared at all. Her muzzle was coated in gore and feathers; I’d obviously disturbed her feast.
She was sated like she had been on drugs. High and not likely to come down soon.
You see foxes do not kill just the one thing; they kill the lot in a blood lust but they do it silently - a swift nip to the back of the head and the chicken is dead.
One after the other.
And the more they kill, the more they want to kill beyond any hope of just a single meal. They will kill till all is dead and nothing survives. Till the hunger that drove them to the chicken coop in the first place raises its head and then they feast there and then or until they are disturbed.
And the chickens dozy in the night cannot fight back. Trapped in the hut there is no escape. Chickens have no night vision, they are utterly vulnerable.
So I shouted at her.
"Get out! Get out! Get out! You horrible beast! Bugger off!"
Then, only then she snapped out of her blood induced stupor and she started to get bothered but she couldn’t escape running from one side of the hut to the other confused by the feathers everywhere, the devastation hiding her escape. Jumping into a nesting box to hide from the light. Then running across the back of the hut to nose at the doors to try to force her way out and away.
"Get her out! Get her out! I want her out now!"
I don’t know what Charlie did but the fox found an escape and I could finally relax - sort of relax.Relax to survey the carnage - and note that there were chickens alive, overlooked by the fox.
But there were so many dead, and so many dying….

Wednesday 31 October 2012

Black Dog Stalking...a real horror story.

I am being stalked by a black dog; sometimes his breath is hot on my neck at other times just a fleeting glimpse out of the corner of my eye but whatever, he is definitely here - haunting me.
How do I know?
Well my thinking is screwy…
My eldest says I am the meanest Mom on earth and as I stare at him nonplussed by his response to my request that he tidies his room and makes his bed, a part of my brain agrees.
I am mean.
I am stupid.
It were better that I was dead. I have nothing to offer my children that cannot be bettered by them being looked after by my parents or indeed anybody else.
I shake the thought off but in my confusion I respond to his obdurance by getting angry at his comment – it’s like I have no control whatsoever over my poisonous tongue and in my hurt I land up shouting and  raging at him and that bit in my brain goes: “See, look at you. Raging and screaming. That cannot be good for your children. Call yourself a mother – dream on.”
I know it is bad.
I know why it is bad and why I am being stalked.
It has been a difficult few months my relationship with my husband has been rocky, my fears that we are drifting apart, and my loneliness without him coming home every night, problems with my eldest at school, money worries, guilt. So much guilt.
When it gets like this I am fair game to the Black Dog and I have to get myself back under control.
It’s hard, so very hard.
I am eating wrong. I get guilty.
I am sleeping and not sleeping all at the wrong times. I get guilty.
I cannot be bothered with anything. I get guilty.
I want it all to stop but there is no let up.
I feel like I am going to explode.
I have to trust that I will get out of this even though I am not trusting.
I have to hope even though I don’t feel hopeful.
And all while this is going on I pray my friends will still be OK with me for I can say nothing because they won’t understand. Life is difficult for them too.
I hate depression.
I hate it with all my heart.
I hate it that it is so disabling.
And there are times that I wish to god that people could see the scars it makes and see that I am a good person underneath that I am deserving of their admiration that I am worth something because in spite of my depression I do manage most times to have a life – one that they frequently take for granted.

Please note: I am going through this now but I promise I am not going to kill myself. I made a promise that I would never, ever, leave my children. The thoughts about killing myself are just thoughts - things I have to mentally fight each and every day at present because I cannot afford for my screwy thinking to get the better of me.
I have promised.
If I said I am confident that I won't do anything silly that doesn't mean that it is a walk in the park and that I can just pull myself together; it takes a HUGE amount of will to get my brain to go blank, to distarct myself from those pernicious thoughts, the nagging that I am not good enough nor ever will be. 
I cant help but look at those who do not have this evil embodiment and I am jealous. But I know that i have to get thought this for there is no way out but thougth my own endeavour.
And sometimes I just don't feel like a hero in a movie, sometiems it feel like I haven't the strength. Sometimes I dont want to have to do it any more.
But in the end I have to fight it.
It's not pretty.
Its blood and gore.
And it is exhausting.
I ony hope that when I get thorough this that there are people I love waiting for me and that they don't think too badly of me and all the shit I put them through.

Tuesday 16 October 2012

The last time….

I come into a room and the scent sends me back in time, tumbling into childhood and and for a fleeting moment I am there and everything is safe. 
Scent does that to you - it is evocative. 
I pretend that it is my grandparents visiting me, reassuring me in my own home a place they never visited, a place they never saw let alone knew existed.
I shouldn't be surprised that I can smell them or at least the scent that reminds me so strongly of their house for I have inherited much of their furniture and bits and pieces. A trigger when I am scared taking me back to a time when I was unconditionally loved and knew it if only on a sub-conscious level.
But the thing that gets me most is not a scent but a touch, a touch of fingers pushing my hair back behind me ear.
My youngest son does it and I am immediately transported back to the bitter sweet time when I remember her last doing that to me.
 ...and I see her watching me as she lies in her bed. Looking at me as if for the first time in her life and I see the wonderment on her face. She looks at me as if I am a rare gift, something beautiful and precious. Her hand is cool. I do not look at her as such, I watch the television at the end of her bed, embarrassed at her scrutiny.
We do not talk.
Her hand drops to the bed and I pick it up and hold it and don’t let go. And as the night progresses into morning I rearrange the covers, she grows hot and cold and tosses them off one moment and demands in a child’s voice to have them back the next.
I calm her when she gets agitated and hold her hand again. She says she needs to do: " Tuppence" then says plaintively that she is thirsty.
Something I don't-know-what in the tone of her voice makes me anxious and I swiftly pad to where my parents lie sleeping - all awaiting the inevitable yet hoping that it will never happen.
I wake my mother and she is given a drink. She takes first one sip like a child having to be supported then another and lets out a sigh and I know immediately that I have to run.
I have to get Daddy. I have to get her son.
I’ve had my precious moments with her and it is his turn now. I fear I maybe too late, I fear I haven't been quick enough.
He enters her room and watching from the doorway I see his step falter and his shoulders sag and I realise I am looking at a motherless boy.
So every time someone does that to me I remember that day and that night and the long wait, which I greedily kept to myself, but most of all I remember the love that linked us all.

Friday 12 October 2012

So you want to work for me….?

Let’s get this straight when you work for me I want to see work done.
Your place of work is for work it is not an internet café nor is it a social media site
I don’t want to see you texting when you should be working nor looking at the damn things either. I don’t want to be party to your love affairs or break ups because you are yelling into your phone to be heard. Nor do I want to hear you arranging your night out in fact I don’t want to hear you on your mobile full stop!
Ditch the phone and get on with the job at hand.
When you come to work for god’s sake come prepared. Unless otherwise stated I do not have specialist tools at hand because you have left them at your girlfriend/boyfriend’s house. I am not a hardware store. Nor am I chemists when you come to work with a hangover. Don’t try to pull the wool over my eyes or think I have forgotten that you told me you were going out the night before to get bladdered.
I don’t care!
I am paying for the job to be done and you have a responsibility to be in a fit state to do it.
Whatever you do don’t lie to me about being ill because of a hangover or because it is Friday/Monday and you just don’t feel like going to work; invariably I have been there and done that, so excuses won’t wash. If you are ill you’re ill. You don’t miraculously get better from flu after 24 hours and if you have a sick bug I don’t want to see you for two days.
Be on time for work and turn up when you say you will it is called being be reliable. I don’t care that the trains were late or the bus cancelled build in some bugger it time so that you are always where you should be at the time you should be and if that means you have to get up half an hour earlier then so be it!
Don’t let me down at the last minute. Remember the world does not revolve round you, I may have had to organise my whole day to fit you in, I may even have had to take a precious day off from my own job to do so.
Take pride in your appearance. Unshaven dirty looking people are not welcome. If you have no pride in yourself it is hardly likely you will have pride in your work. I am relaxed about tattoos and body piercings but I can’t cope with body odour, bad breath, dirty smelly clothes, stubble and lank greasy hair. Would you like someone like that serving you at Tesco’s?
If I call you or text you about work I expect you to answer promptly not the next day. It may be that I have an emergency and you’d look a complete nit turning up for work to find there was no one about to let you in.
Don’t be rude or surly or you’ll find you won’t have a job at all.
A reliable, polite, well turned out employee who gets on with the job is like gold dust and is far more likely to be recommended for future jobs, and promotion etc. than one who is not.
So what are you going to do about it?
Do you think you could work for me…?

Go on you know you want to...


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