Mental, mardy, but a little bit marvellous..


March 2017


I find myself sad this evening. I don’t know why. I guess a lack of sleep and a long day could be something to do with it? 

I’ve had a fab morning. Picked up toddler boy and the sun was shining. I have read some of my latest book (Stardust by Neil Gaiman in case you’re wondering), cleaned the house, tidied up, even made a beautifully comforting rice pudding. 

And now, as I sit here, in my quiet(ish), clean(ish) house. With my quiet(ish) children, I feel sad. Because I’ve no one to share it with I guess. 

Don’t get me wrong. As much as I’d love to meet someone, or find someone to whisk me off into the sunset on a white horse, so we could live happily ever after… I know it won’t happen. There’s too much baggage for a start. I don’t want anyone to come along and move into my house and interfere in my life with my kids. We’ve got it going on and pretty good at the minute; I don’t want to mess that up. We’re good on our own. We’re better alone. But I would like someone to maybe make some plans with. Like, a last minute holiday with the kids. Or a day trip out, would you like to come? Stuff like that. 

Someone to curl up with on the couch after a long day, no pressure, just being together and winding down. Someone to relax with and to have hold me when it all gets too much. Maybe someone to wipe my tears or cuddle my nightmares away. I don’t want someone’s everything, I’m my own person. I wouldn’t want to be their everything either. But someone to love and to have love me? Maybe I would chase a star for that. 



This reminded a friend of me. It’s Hulk, clearly, but what does it say about me that it reminds them of me? šŸ˜‚ It has a flip top head and it’s a bit growly. Hmm. Made me giggle, at any rate. Hope it did you too. 


I’m not sure quite what burnout means or how it relates to me personally.  I mean in the general sense, I get it. But in the personal sense I don’t. 

I suspect my symptoms (for want of a better word) have the past few weeks/months/however long, been attributed to burnout due to no time off, no respite, no rest. 

Maybe in a general sense, yes. But on the most personal level, I’m not sure that I’m completely there yet. In the fullest sense of the word. Does it not mean to be burned out, an empty shell, nothing left to give? Because even on my worst days I still get up and get doing and see to the children and give. 

Burnout to me implies not being able to do any of these things. And on those days where I can’t, I still can, because I do. I’m kind to myself and I hold the weight of my expectations lightly so in my very worst, emptiest moments there is still something. So maybe I’ve not burned out yet. 

Or maybe I’m a candle. I go out, I come back again. An eternal wick. 

50 more thingsĀ 

1) I take pictures of everything. I document everything my children and I do as a family.

2) I’m keeping count of how many books I read this year. I thought it would be interesting. So far I’m at 13. (Update, end of June, 33)

3) I never used to laugh out loud at anything funny (like on tv). I used to watch everything in dead silence. 

4) I stopped dancing when I was 15. My sister mocked me at a party and I never danced after that…

5) …until I went to a music festival. Eden. I danced again, until the early hours of the morning, for the first time in 16 years. 

6) I love to read. And I love to write.

7) I want to have someone to just sit with. Watch tv and hold hands

8) I’m prone to nightmares. I get a lot of between-waking-and-sleeping nightmares. 

9) I once trained myself to pick up spiders with my bare hands. (I have arachnophobia). I can’t do it anymore. 

10) I’m terrified of vets

11) I don’t like birds, rabbits, or horses. They’re all weird and creepy. 

12) I can’t grow long hair. It breaks when it gets to my shoulders and ends up hugely damaged and split.

13) Three of my children have special needs. (Update end of July, five of the six appear to have SEN)

14) I think I’m not a very good mother anymore. Im reactive. I don’t have the patience I had even 5 years ago. It’s all gone.

15) I wish I was as thin as when I thought I was fat. Any of those times would do. I’d take that body over this any day.

16) My favourite intimate thing to do is to kiss someone. I could do kissing for hours.

17) I spent over a year not shaving my body hair. I loved every minute. I shaved maybe 3 times the following year.

18) I have a passion for Elvis (’68 onwards) and gave it as a middle name to my last baby. 

19) I get migraines. They are usually hormonal 

20) My best friend and I used to play ‘thigh wars’ whenever we got drunk

21) The person I used to consider my very best friend secretly told people we were in a relationship. And didn’t attend my wedding. We’re not friends anymore. 

22) My brother and sister used to play tricks on me. They once caught a huge spider and put it under my pillow. When I went to bed it crawled out.

23) My very first ‘own’ thing that I was allowed to choose was a pillow from my grandma and grandads caravan. It had big painted flowers on it and I adored it. 

24) I don’t know if I ‘have standards’ or if I’m just desperate not to be judged

25) I’d love to travel but have never been in an aeroplane 

26) I don’t think I have enough things to go on this list

27) I often see things that aren’t there. I blink, readjust my vision and it’s usually okay

28) I spent years thinking my sisters dead dads ghost was whispering in my ear as I fell asleep. I was terrified every night. 

29) I couldn’t sleep without sound and noise until I was 32. Then I trained myself to sleep without either. 

30) I don’t want any more children but only because I don’t think my other children would cope with a baby. Much as I would like to see them lose themselves in love, I think it would be a difficult transition – but I’d love another.

31) I sometimes have an overwhelming need to paint, or write, or draw. When the urge is satisfied it can be months before I feel it again.

32) I long for waist length, thick hair. Mine has never been past my shoulders.

33) If I could change my life, I would

34) I have two tattoos. I want so many more

35) I have a couple piercings. I think I would like many more but whenever I mention getting more on my face, everyone (children included) say no, please don’t

36) All I want is the freedom to love and be loved in return. No conditions. 

37) My favourite peanut butter is Skippys smooth

38) I love pancakes!

39) I used to be so ticklish I peed my pants every time 

40) I spent my childhood outside, making my own fun. I’m surprised I didn’t end up in the hospital on at least 3 occasions that I remember. 

41) I’m pretty sure I have dyspraxia and that’s where the children get it from

42) I often have bad dreams. Often like, all night long for weeks on end. This is one of those weeks.

43) I’m starting to think that real love doesn’t exist. I don’t doubt love but I doubt the ability of others to love me that way. Selflessly.

44) I’m glad I reached adulthood. Now I have to work on being young again.

45) I love Doctor Who. From the 9th doctor up. 

46) I first read LOTR when I was 11. I read it every year after that right up until I was 30

47) I was invited to attend nursing at university but I declined my place.

48) I would love to have someone cook for me. Like a proper, real effort meal

49) I spend a lot of my time perplexed, bamboozled, confuddled. 

50) I made it to 50! Again (but phew it was hard this time) 

Would you please do some or just one? Feels kind of lonely out here. 


So. A lighter note to today after my earlier, somewhat dramatic post. 

did get up and out, I did enter the shop and do the shopping, I did converse with the checkout man and I did come home. It was okay, the children were fine and it wasn’t all bad. 

I survived another day. I live to complain again! 


I’m sat in the car. I left home to a chorus of crying children and grumpy teenagers. I don’t want to go back, ever. I want to drive and drive and never go home again. I can’t keep doing this. It’s horrendous. I hate every second. I’m supposed to be okay with all of this shit and I’m not. It’s awful. I try to make our lives better and it gets harder and harder very day. What am I supposed to do? I got no one and nothing. I’m all they’ve got and boy, do I feel sorry for them. 

Crying in the car. How dignified. I’m sat at the supermarket and I’m supposed to go shopping to buy food for the weekend and I’m meant to get a birthday present for my little girls friend as it’s her birthday party today. I don’t want to leave this car. I don’t want to go home. I physically can’t leave the car right now. I wish someone would hold me and tell me it’s all going to be okay. But how will it be okay? I’ve got no one to tell me the little lies that make the big stuff okay. 

I don’t know what to do to carry on anymore. How do I convince myself to get up and out and carry on? I don’t know. 

We have a runner

He refused to come back to me at school pickup. I asked, he shook his head. I walked towards him, he ran away. I sighed and turned back. I call him, nothing. I walk away. He watches me leave. 

I get my girls, both. I call him again. He pretends not to see me. I call again. An almost imperceptible shake of the head informs me he’s seen me but he’s not coming. Not yet. I call again.  Nothing. I wait. He thinks I’ve gone. He chats animatedly with his friend and they leave together. He catches sight of me a few feet before he gets to me. He halts in his tracks. I beckon him over. He ignores me. He keeps walking. I let him think he’s lost me. I reach out and grab his coat at the exact second he decides it’d be best to run. I hold his coat. A dinner lady asks him if he’s okay. I see her look at my hand holding his coat. Gripping it. I know what she’s thinking. She asks him if he’s ok. He ignores her. She looks at my hand, looks at me. I ignore her too. 

We walk like this, us and the girls, until we get past the crowds. I ask for his hand, he agrees. We hold hands. When we get to the park I let go. I always let go, it’s his chance of freedom, a quick run before we get home. He runs off around the park like usual. I wave to him and he shakes his head. I keep walking. By the time I get to the steps, he’s still on the other side of the park. I call him and there’s that shake of the head again. I’m so tired of this. I keep walking. We go up the steps and out of the park. I keep turning to see if he’s following. He makes it to our side of the park but we’re out of the gate now. I keep my eye on him and watch the road so the girls can cross and go over to our house. I make sure I know where he is; still in my eyeline. I turn away for a few seconds to get the 6 year old across the road. When I turn back he’s gone. Disappeared. My heart sinks. I ask the 10 year old to tell her big brother what’s happened and that if I’m not back with him in a few minutes to come out and help look. It’s raining. We’ve been out in the rain for 40 minutes in total now. My hair is soaked. I’m dripping and it’s cold. I don’t notice. 

I go into the park. I can’t see him anywhere. I remember he likes to hide behind trees. I check behind all the trees on this side. I look behind bushes and all along the road. I can’t see him. He’s disappeared. I start to panic. I sit on the bench in the rain and hope against hope that he will see me and come to me. He doesn’t. 10 minutes passes. He’s still not here. Several people have been in and out of the park in the time I’ve been waiting. Every worst case scenario has gone through my head and I’m thinking I need to call 999 because by the time I get home it will have been half an hour and for an 8 year old that’s AGES. 

I walk the perimeter of the park. Still can’t see him. I decide to go back and get the car and check the local roads. My oldest son comes into the park and asks me if I’ve found him yet. Clearly not, he agrees to get my phone and help me look. He takes one side of the park and I take the car. I drive up and round the outside edges of the park before getting a phone call. He’s in the garden. We wait. He’s walking up the path. More waiting.  He’s not going inside, my big boy goes and gets him successfully, no more running. Takes him indoors and locks the door. I drive home, relieved we found him but heart sick. 

His coat is lying on the floor where he dumped it; his shoes too. Soaking wet and he’s sat on the couch, warm, in his underpants and he’s watching his favourite tv show like nothing has happened. I’m so glad he’s safe I don’t say anything. I stroke his hair as I walk past and I sit down and I try desperately to bottle this emotion up, to keep it inside and to not let the tears escape. I’m so close to crying, to breaking. But I don’t. And he’s home. 

Fraught Friday

Today has been difficult. It was supposed to be good but it’s not been easy by any stretch. 

Started off okay. Got up to a clean house thanks to my late night cleaning before bed. Got the 8 year old off to his bus okay and on time. Went for a shower, woke the girls up. Then it was time to leave and no one was ready. Cue another 10 minutes of getting them all ready to go. 10 more minutes getting them out the house and into the car and we set off. Traffic. Toddler boy into nursery by 10 past 9, girls into school by 9.20 and I’m at Tesco and on my way home by 9.30. Half an hour later than I meant to be. The weather is atrocious. Rain and wind and cold. Brrr. 

A bill collector turned up while I had visitors. I did try to sort it out but I hate talking on the doorstep, it’s undignified and they could hear and it’s private and I just got rid of them as quickly as I could because I was so embarrassed. I told them Superdad had done a runner too so I don’t have to pay for anything in his name. It’s a lie but what can I do. I’ll give them back the items then they don’t need to bother do they. I just hate talking at the door. I hate that I get so anxious about this. And I hate that I feel guilty for it even after the way he’s treated me. Anyway she (the bill collector) went and that was okay.

But I was on the verge of tears and I am now and I just don’t know why I’m like this. I say other people compartmentalise but actually today has made me realise I do that too. On a much larger scale than I previously thought. Finances, yes, I’ve always been very private about that but otherwise I’ve seen myself as an open book. Which I am in regards to personal matters but mental health and my children’s mental health is another box. And my exes and the way they relate to my current relationships and life is another box. And so is the way I bring up my children or treat my animals, my family, my friends. Although all these things mix and interact, in my head they’re separate. It’s very strange to me. And it’s me that does it. It’s weird and strange and doesn’t feel like me at all.

Anyway. It’s not been a bad day. But it hasn’t been an easy day. I’m hopeful that the children will be okay this evening since they’ve all had meltdowns already this week but I suspect that won’t change just because there’s a weekend on the horizon. I’m so tired and worn out. It’s now been 6 weeks since I got a break from the children and my life. It’s been a long and difficult  6 weeks, however the children and I are better for it I think. We have learned several new things. We have each other. No one else will help us, we have to help ourselves and each other. There is no one else except for ourselves. That’s a stark reality to face, especially when you have people that say “we do so much for you”. But in reality they don’t do anything that helps. They don’t turn up, they don’t visit, they blanked me for ‘important’ family members and they’ve ignored me. That’s not support. That’s not even being a friend. So. The children and I have each other and we are happy together. The rest is just window dressing. 

I got my delivery of homemade fudge through the post. It’s not all bad. Because I did get yummies!


I’ve been thinking. 

Did you know that I love the smell of sunshine? Or when I think of that sunshine it’s always as light dappling it’s way through beautiful green leaves? Or that my memories of summer are all childhood ones, no adult memories are warm enough? 

Once I pushed fast forward on the video recorder even though we were watching tv at the time. Because my dad told me to during a commercial break, and I remember it so well, so palpably – the light was orange, we were watching Sinbad, it was a Sunday afternoon in summer – because he laughed and there wasn’t much that made him laugh. I was proud. And anxious, even then. Before my world came crashing down around my ears and never really built itself up again, I remember the warmth and the sunlight. 

If I think of my playschool, it’s sunny and warm. My first year at school the same. Friends and playtime and laughing and fun and no troubles and warmth. Strong sunlight and warm rays. I can feel it on my skin just writing about it here. I can remember it all. And it wasn’t rosy, just yellow. 

Some parts of me stay in those endless summer days. And I wish I could take those parts and use them to lighten up my all too grey days, to throw some warmth at me when I’m cold and laugh with my own little bit of sunshine. That’s the dream huh? To be here and there at the same time. All of the benefits and none of the struggles. That would be a warm day indeed. 

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