For once I am inspired to write, but my energy levels are not complying. It's my ridiculously busy time of year, and today was my first full work day in my office in over two weeks. I've been flitting about, rushing here and there, and once at home doing the same thing until Bossy Boots goes to sleep at 8-8.30pm every night. Wah, wah, wah.

This is a bit of a waste of a post, as it's largely going to consist of me moaning about shit, sorry. I am apparently just about ready to start my period you'll be pleased to know, which means I am in total insane snappy lady mode much to The Dude's immense and all-consuming joy.

My first pet peeve may seem random - mail order brides. Ok, that probably isn't very PC anymore, but I'm sorry, that's what they are. You can call it what you want, it's still buying a woman and trapping her in a life of domesticity and breeding so your nasty old ass can bang some young hot thing. In exchange, she gets to live in England, and...and...something. I am pretty confident that I live in the mail order bride capital of England, as I see mail order brides and their crusty husbands on most days.

I'm sure these women left dreadful lives behind, but they come to the UK and endure endentured servitude for the privilege of residing in the UK. Is it worth it? The Dude's family, acquainted with men who have bought women, see it from a very live and let live perspective. They view it as saving a poor soul who would otherwise be living in a shanty town, occasionally gathering rubbish to trade in for a few cents. Here, they get the glory of living in a council flat with some old bloke who couldn't find a woman to marry without cash exchanging hands. Bliss!

2) Men who grab or scratch their junk in my presence. Dude, I would balk at my husband doing that when we're hanging out at home watching The Office - do not DARE stand in front of my desk and adjust yourself. I do not want to think of your twig and berries at all, and I certainly don't need to be reminded that they sometimes itch or need shifted. For some reason, Middle Eastern students do this all the time and I so want to kick them out of the office. However, at the heart of things I'm just a dainty little mouse and would fear the confrontation. Shame, since I could do with out the junk shaking.

3) Sidewalk hogs. I get that you want to walk alongside your friends, but if someone is trying to run or walk by you, get out the way! Three of you do not need to walk next to each other at all times so that I must pick up my child and walk into the street to bypass you. Also, if I am running toward you, please, just walk single file for a moment so I am again not forced into the street. Not too long ago I shouted at some old dears for not budging an inch when I tried to run by them. Gone was that reserve mentioned in number 2 - it must have been period time then as well. Stupid old cows.

4) The constant assault on working MOTHERS by the media. Working parents are not a problem, just a mother. I know this subject only affects a smattering of you, but I'm blogging about it when I get my brain and energy back, so prepare yourselves. Or as I typed originally, "yourselfs". See what I mean?

5) Loud talkers. Shut the fuck up - no one cares about what you're saying nearly as much as you do. There is a person in a position of power at work who barges in our quiet, constructive office and announces her arrival like she's on some red carpet. Get over yourself.

6) Periods. Harbingers of doom. Signifier of barren wombs and bad attitudes. Cramps. Crying because your husband decides to do us all a favour and go grocery shopping before he collects you from work rather than after when he knows you'll be tired. No, not grateful tears, angry tears because you wanted to pick out your own hummus.

7) The evil age of 3 - P is hilarious, amazing, and clever. However, the tantrums and smart assery of this age, jesus chrysler it's hard work. This kid, after being reprimanded for being dreadful, says things like, "I've had a horrible day because you and Daddy were cross with me" and "I don't like you very much right now Mum, and I don't want to be your friend because you shout at me." We are only cross with her when she deserves it, and I am not a shouter unless she's running onto oncoming traffic. This is not to mention the screaming, dear god, the SCREAMING. Four is good, right? Right?

8) The sun. It's autumn in England (actually, is it officially?) but the sun shines every damn day and it's still 20 degrees Celcius. Every day. You could roast a chicken on a spit in my stupid office and it's insufferable. Unlike my Cheese Wife, I cannot tolerate the sun. I hate the thing. Give me a cloudy and cold day over a sunny hot one any day of the week. Lordy, I am so goth.

Phew. I feel better now. Apologies for the absolute rambling nature of this post. Once my head is back I'll try to do a post good and proper. I think. Maybe.


Girls' Day Out

Due to a school closure, P and I had long-planned today's Girls' Day Out. When originally asked what she wanted from the day, all I got from P was, "I want to do some playing." Really kid? Playing? You don't say! What else do three year olds do but eat, sleep and play?

We crammed a lot into our time; bus rides, the park, lunch, shopping for cheap tat jewellery at Claire's and a bucket of dinosaurs from the toy shop, a viewing of Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, and a gourmet cupcake purchase for The Dude. She selected one with bright pink frosting, rightly assuming that the colour would please him greatly.

I am utterly, all-consumingly shattered right now, but high on the fact that I have a daughter I can do these things with. I'm not much of a girly-girl, ok, other than my fancy shoe and Johnny Depp fixation I'm really not at all a girly-girl, but I love visions of lunching and shopping with P - two girls out on the town.

I am rather sentimental about it all at the moment anyway, so pardon me for sounding like the classic working Mom, proud of the fact that she's spent ONE WHOLE DAY with her child alone. A colleague recently lost her two year old due to SIDS, so I've been quite precious when it comes to P as of late. I don't know this woman very well, but she's about my age, and she was pregnant with her first not long after I was. I never saw her daughter until the week before she died, when I passed them as I was leaving work; I was holding P, she was holding her daughter. I was comparing her daughter's size to P's, as I do obsessively - a residual long-lasting effect of having a baby born early with serious reflux.

I know it sounds so stupid, but with death I always struggle with the whole notion of here one moment, gone the next. With children this is multi-faceted, because I have spent far too much time trying to remotely fathom what the mother is going through. I don't even have the words to describe how little I am able to comprehend the whole situation.

This is why I'm teary each time P says something like, "We two girls love each other Mum!" and "I'm so excited about Girls' Day Out! No boys allowed, right Mum? No Dad, RIGHT MUM?" In ordinary times my heart would twinge slightly, now I inadvertently go to that dark place I'd rather not go and wonder how I would deal with never hearing similar things again.

It doesn't bear thinking about, but I don't know how to banish those thoughts from my head these days. At night I try not to listen to each breath she expels from the next room; as soon as I start, I'm awake for ages ensuring that one follows the other as it should. I attempt to convince myself that such dreadful occurances are thankfully rare, but I've always been cursed with the overriding thought that if these things are going to happen to anyone, they'll happen to me. I also hate myself for being so melodramatic about it - these concerns of mine are based on the actual experience of someone I know, and I am carrying on about what ifs. This poor woman has to live it, and here I am agonising about hypotheticals.


When is the time

After at least a year or more of mostly internal deliberations, I've arrived at a decision. I think it's time to try and surrender my uterus to a sibling for P. It's only within the past six months that I've felt remotely interested in trying for another baby, but my concerns about the logistics of life have gotten in the way.

I voiced my doubts the first time round as to whether I was ready, or even truly wanted a child. I'm still unsure how much of it wasn't due to my long-term ability not to not be able to get pregnant and my innate hatred of failing to accomplish something I'm intent upon achieving. Regardless of my reasons for pursuing treatment, it's a decision that enriched my life to an extent I wouldn't have thought possible.

Because of this, it's hard to genuinely believe that I am confident in my decision. It's strange - something happened along the way that made me go from being all, "Second kid? Fuck no!" to "Ohmigod. Babyeeees are soooo cute!" in a short space of time. I suppose things settled in such a way that I felt comfortable where I was as a mother, thus allowing me to consider that I could do this again. If I allow myself to deliberate too much, I worry that my optimism is a bit too bold, and a year, or a year and a half from now I'll read this again and laugh at my abject ignorance.

Even once I thought I was ready for a second child, life got in the way. Where would we live? Certainly not this dinky two-bed flat which is bulging at the seams with the three of us. As our plans are to relocate to the US in the near future, there would be no point in buying a bigger place in the UK. Job? I am applying for jobs in the US on a weekly basis, desperately hoping that someone will finally think I am capable of being employed in that country once again. Having a kid would obviously delay that for awhile. Quite awhile.

Recently I've decided to stop analyse so friggin' much and just jump right in. You can only debate a subject's pros and cons for so long before it dawns on you that there is no path to the right answer; it will never present itself. The pros are unchanging, the cons generally strong enough to withstand every angle of pondering. We'll move eventually, I'll get a job in the US at some point. However, we all know these girl parts weren't so keen on reproducing when I was in my early 20s, so now at 31, depressingly, the clock is ticking.

I'm giving myself some time to get used to the idea, perhaps a couple of months. I need to try and wean myself off Celexa, which may be the biggest challenge with this whole gig. Those in the know - does one really need to kick the SSRI habit before trying to get pregnant, because, um...EW! I'm having some anxiety issues at the moment WITH my pharma pal, I would not be remotely interested in having Teh Secks if I was too busy having panic attacks and doing my fainting goat impression. I may as well just skip the hors d'oeuvres and go straight to the IVF.

Who knows what the future of this blog may bring? Will I be talking about pussaries again? Taking photos of my beloved Puregon Pen partying on my gut? Regardless, hopefully it will all lead to my pregnant lady boobs being ogled again by construction workers. After all, that's what we're all really fighting for.


No Easy Feet

This post is about running, which is why I called it "No Easy Feet". Get it?? Get it?? Yeah, ok, it's lame. It is all I could come up with aside from "Fuck my shoes", which would possibly get me banned by Blogger and would certainly not have my post appear on the BlogHer ad strip. Instead, you get poor punning.

So yes, running. I totally fell off the wagon when in the States, running only once. That one time was sufficient for me; it was hot as hell and I'm pretty sure every trace of liquid present in my body pre-run was shed along that 5K trip. As I have mentioned before, I ate my prodigious ass, stomach, and upper thigh weight in naughty foods, and gosh darnit if you can't tell in my mid-torso corpulence.

I don't regret it, as my usual monk-like asceticism regarding food was finally relieved and goodness was all that sinfully bad food delicious. It just meant I'd have to work harder when I got back to the UK. Unfortunately, I'd forgotten that my running shoes (Brooks GTS for those taking notes) take a good 3 years to become adapted to. When I bought them in June, I went from easily running my normal distances to struggling to do half thanks to the adjustment period.

My problem is that I have arches under which you can drive a medium-size truck. I'm also a redonkulous overpronator, so I need the running shoe equivalent of those black boots with the leg braces attached. I'm pretty sure a civil engineer was drafted in to design these shoes, they are so intent on correction of poor form. Pre-Brooks shoes, I was wearing an old pair of Nikes with collapsed air cushions thanks to my overpronation choking the life out of the cushioning. It took me at least two weeks for my body to adjust, in which time it felt with every run that I had cinderblocks attached to my feet.

Now I'm back at that point. I'm keen to get this thing moving again, but it's such a chore at the moment I'm using the will to run. I get to about 1K before I'm cursing my ability to be even slightly spritely. I feel heavy, as if I'm clomping along the seaside like an oafish, out-of-shape lump. I keep telling myself that I worked through it before, I will do it again with some time, but it's hard to maintain that attitude when you can't even run 5K without wanting to tear your legs off.

I don't know why I'm blogging about this - short of gifting me a pair of normal feet there isn't much to be accomplished by rambling about it. If anyone else has had to suffer through a shoe adjustment period, I'd love to hear about it. While you're at it, if anyone can tell me what they do to persevere through a workout despite your tired self wanting to give up, I'd like to hear about that too. Shoes aside, I'm having some trouble just working through difficult parts of my runs. It's not a matter of endurance, but rather me lacking willpower to carry on when challenged. Despite all my big talk on here about exercising, I'm a dreadfully lazy person and often just stop when I can't be arsed anymore. If someone has a magic way of sticking it out, teach me your ways! I'll be waiting here, wearing my shoes, thinking of going running, but opting to watch Rock of Love 3 instead.


The times they are a' changin'

Not too long ago, there was this:

Almost a year later, it was time for me to go back to work and stick P in Nursery: Das Gulag. At 11 months, this was her first full day of hard labour:

Yesterday, my baby started her first day at Big School. Big School dictates that one must wear regulation school-specific apparel, only available to be purchased from the school directly or one large department school. One must have a red leotard and matching red ballet shoes, again, purchased from a singular store, and one store alone. Hair, if below shoulder length, must be pulled up, but only using a navy hairband! Shoes, black, cannot possibly be patent, and have to feature a t-bar design. Any other shoe construction pattern is unacceptable. In the winter, if one must wear a scarf, said scarf must be the school's own design. The saving grace, at least for another year, is that she needn't wear the school blazer, available at the earlier-mentioned department store for the bargain basement price of 80 British pounds. We'll be getting out a loan shortly in preparation.

So here she is - my wee "big" girl in her uniform, complete with her first pair of Docs. You can put my kid in a uniform, but I'll make sure she has a hint of subculture peeking out somewhere.