Monthly Archives: June 2014

Glass Half Full


I’ve learnt a new word today. It was a word I would have quite happily not learnt, but hey ho, nothing to be done about it.  The word is:


It’s a vision condition in which the crystalline lens of your eye loses its flexibility, which makes it difficult for you to focus on close objects.  It’s an inevitability of ageing and none of us can escape it.  Not even me.

The bottom line is that I need glasses for reading.  It’s not urgent and if I really wanted to I could wait another 2 years (like I did 2 years ago) but the problem is not going away and all I’m doing is convincing myself that I can read without any issue.

I can’t.

Occasionally words become blurred (mostly in the evening) or my eyes are just a bit tired or hurt a little bit.

I also have very slight short sightedness too and although that has become a teensy bit worse, I’ve still got ok distance vision so that’s not a pressing issue at all.

After my free eyetest (I squeezed my last one out of my current employer) I then got handed to the sales guy.  I hate it when I can see a sales pitch ahead of me.  I feel like saying, just shut up and tell me the cost will you.

I have two choices.  I can get reading glasses or varifocals.  Varifocals are where the bottom of the lense is for reading (my bigger prescription) and the top is for distance (they will put my very small prescription in there).

I’m thinking I have to go for varifocals because, lets be honest, I spend most of my evening on social media with the tv on.  I can’t see what else I should do.

The trouble is the cost.

For reading glasses I can get something for about £85.

For varifocals I’m looking at around £270.

Can anyone recommend one over another?  Can I survive with just reading glasses?

I’ve Judged You

Your daughter was withdrawn at the birthday party.

You called her stubborn.  She looked overwhelmed and shy.

You stayed for over an hour to settle her, then left.  It took me 20 minutes to convince her to come to the birthday tea table.

40 minutes later you were back.  Chatting to me.  Stinking of alcohol.  Talking whilst I was trying to enjoy my daughter’s party.

I went to deal with a child so I can could get out of the conversation.

I did judge you.

I judged you on your ability to know what your daughter was feeling

I judged you on why your daughter was behaving like that.  Was there an issue at home?

I judged you on going to the pub during the party.

I judged you for chatting to me when I needed to be part of the party.

I feel bad because that judging was based on that hour long obvservation, but I have little else to go on.

So when you invite my daughter (along with one other girl) to your house after school for a small birthday party, I say no.  A car ride away (are you driving?) to a house I’ve never been to.  To a home I have no idea invite

But I have manners

I lied.

I said we were busy as family was visiting, but that we were pleased you had thought of us.

What else could I do?

Obsessed with Death

No, not one of my children (although Pickle did for a short while there at the age of 5), but me!

I am very obsessed with death but not in a bad way.  Not in a way that I’m depressed about ageing or the way I will die. In the way that I can learn a lot about how to live my life by learning how other people die well. Peonies

I follow quite a few palliative care doctors on twitter. I’m genuinely fascinated by what they do and warmed by their dedication for the UK to review the way we treat dying patients and create “Good deaths”.

I also appreciate my life.  We are here but a short time so I don’t hang on to stale friendships, moan a lot about how unhappy I am in a particular situation, spend ages being jealous of other’s lives.  I care about my own life and my family whilst still having an open heart to be sympathetic to those I don’t know, to listen, to care, to get annoyed at injustice.

So I read a lot of books that deal with death and watch programmes (Billy Connolly’s recent series and the current one on BBC4 called “My Last Summer”).  It can be distressing and raw but I don’t find it morbid.  There is one thing certain in life and that’s death.  I’d rather face it head on and use it to better my living than bury my head in the sand and never prepare for it.

So I’m thinking of starting a Pinterest  board and providing my family with the link.  I’m going to pin all the things I want to have happen at my funeral.  You know they are going to be far too busy wailing and being distressed 😉 to get it just right.

Whilst I’m am an atheist and think it’s highly unlikely I’ll see my own funeral, they can know that they got it just right and that will provide a massive amount of comfort to them. I know it will.

I’m still haunted by the fact my dad insisted that a song from a Pan Pipes album was played at my mum’s funeral. I was sure she didn’t even like the bloody album, but he claimed she did.  My sister and I chose a modern song about Blue Sky. It was lovely, but not sure she would have wanted it?  We bought the cheapest casket because we thought she’d be annoyed if we spent too much money on it.  As all her money is now with my dad and his new wife, perhaps she would have wanted a splurge.  I have no bloody idea.  Thankfully my sister chose her favourite flowers.

So is a Pinterest board for your own funeral a step too far?



There is a bit of a phenomenon that keeps happening to me and I have been noticing it more and more recently.

It’s a middle age phenomenon I think.

Involuntarily high-pitched “aaaahhhh” or “oooohs” when surprised.

Open the door on someone?


Trip up a little on a footpath?


Get surprised by a toddler as you walk around a corner?


And not just in your normal voice.  This is a distinctly “old woman” sound.  It’s higher pitched. Very sing songy.  Very bloody annoying.

It’s really unsettling.

I’d be reeeeallly annoyed at me if it wasn’t me.

“Shut up making that annoying sound!”

Oh, hang on, it’s me.

Anyone else?

It’s so embarrassing.

I don’t DO Date Night

There you go. I said it.

I don’t do date nights. In fact the mere mention of those two little words kind of makes me want to punch someone in the face.

There are two reasons I don’t “do” date night

Firstly, I’ve been married for 10 years and been with my partner for 18 years.  One of the perks of being in a long term relationship is that WE DON’T HAVE TO DATE.

I don’t have to make this massively huge effort to dress up and impress and he doesn’t have to polish up on his compliments or check the use by date on the resident condom that has started to leave an imprint on the inside of his wallet.

It doesn’t mean we don’t want to go out and enjoy each other’s company. You know, that well-known, “I’m going out with my husband” night.  It also doesn’t mean I don’t want to occasionally look nice and he doesn’t need to compliment me.  It’s just that after 18 years there really is no pressure here.  I kind of like that.  It can be a pretty shit night and it’s still going to be a great night out, because we aren’t sitting on the sofa or dealing with errant children who want a drink/snack/monster killer/light on.

However, I am just GOING OUT WITH MY HUSBAND. We aren’t dating.  You know, because we ARE MARRIED.

My second issue with the dreaded Date Night is that (yes, I’m going to get defensive here) I feel a little like I’m not doing our marriage any good by not getting out there and having one on one time with my husband.  I think I feel like that, because so many people seem to put an enormous amount of pressure on making sure it happens.

I can’t do it.  I like him, but with only 2 good babysitters to use (my in-laws or my closest friend nearby) I’m a little short on babysitting availability.  If I need to use them, it has to be for a pretty BIG night out.  A 40th or a wedding or something.

I am stingy as well.  I am not spending £8 an hour on a babysitter.  That is waaaay too much pressure to have a good time.  Add a meal cost on top of that, maybe a taxi and that is one very expensive evening out.  Then there is a whole heap of pressure on a good night out.  And you know what, I could have spoken to him here, on this sofa for free.

So I won’t be doing any date night shit anytime soon, thanks.  We’ll do our catching up the old fashion way –  Raising our voices over the top of our kids at the dinner table or grabbing a moment on a car journey whilst the lyrics of “Frozen” are shouted at us from the back seat.

It’s done me ok for 10 years.