Sunday, 16 November 2014

Week 35

Exercise week this week:

Exercise 16 - find a gap (that bit is easy, as you know) and write three sentences including a metaphor....

In my attempt to keep my writing flowing sometimes this forced structure is quite hard.  So, I'll choose a gap moment, write three sentences and keep my fingers crossed that one of them includes a metaphor.  I'll probably have to look that up.

The pains were now starting to come in waves, each one drowning her as it flowed through and over body.  The time between contractions was reducing rapidly and Frankie knew this was definitely time.  Finally, the birthing pool was ready and she climbed into it, submerging her throbbing stomach beneath the water.

Not sure if that works entirely from a metaphor perspective but hey ho.  Very pertinent timing though as tomorrow sees the anniversary of my becoming a parent just 14 years ago.  I always find it a very emotional day and am really intrigued by how my acupuncture session will go.  It's been a busy couple of weeks at work and the weekend has provided a much needed respite.  A friend helped me clear out some stuff from the attic last week and yesterday I took 28 boxes of children's clothes to a charity shop.  Yes, I did mean to write 28.  I had hoped to have child no 3 but it became quite clear that we didn't have the financial, physical or emotional capacity for a third and, while I had settled with that a while ago, I hadn't followed it through.  I did venture into a couple of the boxes but the majority of them went out of the house untouched.  It kicked off a wide variety of emotions, some good and some not so.  It was lovely to be reminded of times past, yet it was also difficult to be reminded of the hopes that would never be.  I'm very happy with the two children that I have, they are both amazing and I know that a third would have made it all very difficult.  Whilst I am disappointed, I also know that I am truly grateful for what I have and for where I am.  Anything else would have created a very different present and today is just right for me.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Week 34

I guess it's not what it set out to be, you and me, is it?  We talked about an idyll, how the countryside would be beautiful, how it would inspire my writing.  The ideal family life, just perfect for bringing up children.  Fresh air, open fields, a supportive community.  How can it inspire me when I'm so bloody tired and so damned lonely.  I love Finn, I do, but it's relentless.   He's in everything I do.  I'm feeding him, watching him, playing with him, sleeping with him, chasing him, reading to him.  I fall asleep next to his bed and when I wake up he's staring at me, awake already.  There's no break, no time to write, no me time.  It's fine for you; your work, your vocation, all fitting in really nicely.  Off early in the morning, leaving behind your 'sleeping beauties', the occasional text during the day asking how 'we' are when really you just mean Finn and then home at night, rushing up the stairs to catch him before he drops off.  It's not fair, he doesn't need you to wake him up when I've spent two hours taking him through a bedtime routine.  He needs structure, it might seem like a regime to you but he needs to sleep and this would work if you would leave it to me.  I know you want to be an active parent, to be involved, but that needs to be on his terms not yours.  I know we said that we didn't want to change, that we wanted to be different to our own parents but we have changed, we had to.  To be honest, I think it would be wrong if we hadn't.  I do still love you but I don't know where 'we-two' have gone.  Oh yes, there's definitely 'we-three', so much so it's suffocating. The perfect family.  Everywhere we go, on our best behaviour, looking the part, the local vet with his wife and son. The county shows, the country fairs, out on parade, meeting Farmer This and Mrs That.  And your friends Mac, not mine.  There might be a community but it's a closed door to me and Finn.  Yes, they were different at the beginning but it soon dried up.  I had nothing in common with any of them; the perfect mothers; the career wives; the WI crowd; forced conversations about the weather and keeping home.  I tried to make it work, we had dinner parties, people came round, we entertained but there were no invites back, did you notice that?  I've never been so stilted, so lacking in inspiration.  There's nowhere to escape it, in the city I could lose myself, be something else.  I had friends, here I have nothing.
It's not right Mac, not for me.

I guess it's not what it set out to be, you and me, is it?  I thought it would be great, that you'd love it up here.  The fresh air, the hills, the open spaces.  What a wonderful place to bring up a family, our family.  I saw us in a rambling home, kids running through the halls, friends gathering in the kitchen.  Frankie, where did all that go?  When did we decide only to have Finn.  He is great but I thought we'd have more, I thought you wanted more.  We talked about children, not a child.  We talked about working alongside each other, my vet practice providing the base for you, for you to write.  Why have you stopped writing, stopped sharing it with me?  You don't like my friends, their wives.  You've no patience to get to know anyone.  If they're not right for you at first meeting then that's it, no second chance.  How can you hope to make friends like that?  I don't understand why you don't want to spend time with people, Frankie, why Finn doesn't have friends of his own.  I have to work really hard to provide this house, this home, this life that you take for granted.  Do you have any idea how knackered I am, early mornings long days.  Weekends at shows and fairs, being the face of the practice, supporting the community so that it keeps supporting us.  Yes, I do love it and yes, it is what I always wanted, but at what cost?  I never see him during the week, you've rushed him off to bed before I get home, no thought for my time with him.  And then there's the drinking.  Whatever time of day I get home, there you are glass of wine in hand, the bottle 'only just' opened.  The dinner parties ruined by your ranting, your rudeness, your inability to keep your food down.   We had to stop having them, going to them, I had to manage my reputation.  I still love you Frankie, but I'm not sure that I like what you have become.
It's not working Frankie, not for me.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Week 33

Busy week, from the balmy Pembrokeshire shores to the hustle and bustle of London at half term.  Two days at the seaside has reinvigorated me, blown away some rusty cobwebs and warmed up my soul.  Standing at the edge of the shore, feeling the wind coming off the sea, waves washing over my wellies, simply blissful.  I could stay there for hours, fortunately I haven't as I would have been washed away but I do love it.  The emotional balancing that takes place is amazing.  I often wonder how much I could manage without, to be able to do that everyday, whether it would be sustainable or whether I need more.  Even following it with two days in London hasn't lost it, although having just been for acupuncture, it is possibly difficult to tell.  I was blessed with a warm and sunny afternoon so had the roof down on the car, music surrounding me and a fantastic drive so feel very indulged this afternoon.  Am trying out a new cafe too sitting at a fantastic table and bench, might have found the perfect writing spot, will need to come and test out the latte another day and see just how good it is.
Watched some great films whilst away, Maleficent and The Help.  Both were wonderfully inspiring in very different ways.  A fabulous retelling of Snow White from the point of view of the wicked witch, I love seeing the opposite perspective of a story and how it completely challenges your initial understanding, maybe I should write my own reaction to last week's post in a Frankie/Mac style.  The Help was just brilliant, great to watch what could be described as a 'chick-flick' with my daughter that wasn't about the girl/boy relationship.  I do love a good moral tale, especially with the opportunity for good to triumph over evil.  I've always been an advocate of the underdog, especially when I considered myself to be one too.

Yes, there should be an exercise this week and I am supposed to be rewriting a section without any adjectives or adverbs.  However, after writing the above a few days ago I am a bit out of kilter so will be leaving it for now or this will never get posted.  Whoops.....