Monday, 31 May 2010

Carried away with their own egos...

You know when you know something is going to be awful but you do it anyway? Just because...

My friend C was staying for the weekend and Husband had an unexpected night off work, so we hit the movies and watched SATC 2 for old times sake. C and I had flat -shared in our heady days as single gals in the big smoke and fancied a trip down memory lane - having been huge fans of the series and avid cocktail drinkers. Yes, the reviews were awful. Yes, the first movie was pants and yes, I should have used my get-out-to-the-cinema-free pass card for a better purpose - but, oh the joy of hindsight.

To say that the film was humourless, story free, vulgar, offensive, tedious and vacuous would be an understatement. What a disappointment and frankly a waste of an opportunity. In it's day SATC was ground-breaking, smart, sexy and packed to the gills with story and character. As one reviewer commented (about another movie but it feels apt here): it was like discovering the slutty good time blousy girl at your school had grown up and become a seedy hooker...

Maybe the SATC makers thought - 'fuck the fact we don't have story to tell, let's just shove the women in a load of fancy garb and run with it - fabulous!' Except there isn't actually even one chic outfit in the whole 2.5 (felt like 26.9) hour movie and they all looked like botoxed trannies dunked in orange fake tan. Jordan has more class.

Carrie - once a spunky quirky writer is now a monied whining unlikeable spoiled cow; Charlotte - dreary at the best of times has segued into a predictable jealous wife who bitches about how hard motherhood is - and yet she has a FULL TIME NANNY! Miranda - not quite sure why she was even in the film to be honest. Samantha - having gone through a poignant and believable journey in the series fighting breast cancer and finding true love - has regressed 20 years and her once biting sexual innuendo now comes across as mutton desperate for a shag. Her behaviour in Abu Dhabi was nothing short of offensive.

As I left the cinema I felt like demanding my money back as I paid to see a film and was rewarded with a lengthy fashion commercial featuring tired old women clinging on to their youth. Sex and the City (the series) was lauded for empowering women and challenging the norm - a guilty pleasure where we watched our intimate thoughts and hopes played out by ballsy women in a sparkling city.

Now it limps along with nothing fresh to say or even wear... It's time the studio shows some mercy and with a swift (lack of cash) injection, puts the old bitch down.

Monday, 17 May 2010


I can't tell you how much it meant to me to get such wonderful advice from all those lovely people who commented on my last post. They made me both smile and cry: I cried because there was such thought and genuine care behind every reply - kind of humbling and so comforting all at once; I smiled because you were all so right! Sometimes in the thick of the fog it is hard to see what is a very simple solution right in front of you.

After crying on my favourite VSB's shoulder on Friday (not a good look, all teary and snotty on some poor boy's shoulder as he tried to catalogue the DVDs...) I met a good friend for lunch on Saturday and she pretty much gave the same advice as the fabulous 8 (as they shall be known). So - a plan of action is required: I'm going to look for work - not necessarily in drama. It doesn't really matter to me - as long as it is part time and I get some damn company. Then I can write - because all this angst aint doing nothing for my book that is for sure... I'm going to cast my net very wide and not worry about how to pick up Sproglet, how to make everything work, until I get a job offer and then I can worry about it. I've been a producer, a film reviewer, a presenter, a script ed, a barmaid, a book seller, a reporter, a radio broadcaster - so I am sure somewhere I can find something related to one of these... I'm quite excited to find out where the dice will land.

I've made lots of arrangements to see folk this week - and I'm gonna get out and about with my laptop to do some writing. I'm gonna join the library. And get walking - through forests and greenery and just try and breathe and feel happy about it all. I'm going to cook and bake - and keep busy... trawling through my OLIVE magazines for fine recipes for me and Sproglet to chow down on) Keep making plans.

I'm not saying that the demons don't bite - this very morning the whole day stretched out before me to be filled and that old sad feeling rose again. There are some other reasons I reckon this melancholy gripped me - but I'll go into those another time. When I think of how the hell I'm gonna entertain Sproglet all week it frightens me - as does the thought of those other Mothers - but I'm going to plough on - a job has to be found.

Thing is, it aint so bad. I've been through worse. In fact I found an email I sent a friend in 2005 when i wanted to get out of presenting on rubbish quiz channels and I wanted to have a baby and I didn't know how the hell it was all going to pan out. But it did. I had the baby and then I changed careers. I've done 2 years on the biggest soap in the UK and no one can take that away from me. It may not be easy - but I love a challenge.

Fingers crossed. And thanks.... I owe you all.

Thursday, 13 May 2010


Every time I start to type a new post I give up for fear that I am simply going to repeat myself over and over again.

Some days the sun shines and I start a chapter and the washing is on and lunch is made and dinner is already made and I tap tappety tap on the laptop convinced today will be different. Then at around 6pm when Sproglet is repeating the same sentence for the twentieth time and I sit opposite him, alone, again, and sadness overwhelms me and I want to curl up into a small ball and just make it all stop. I realise that apart from a cursory conversation with the Mother across the road as I drop Sproglet at her house for her to do the school run - I haven't spoken to anyone (in the flesh) all day. Or the day before.

I feel like I am sinking and I can't find my way to the surface. I am drowning... I don't know the way out of this. But I cannot go on like this or I'll end up back at the docs begging for anti-depressants which I don't need - I just need people. I need one person to ask me how my day is. Just one would do. I need one person to tell me about their day.... Someone who wants to talk about anything other than fucking kids and schools and bollox like that. Husband either stays at work or gets up, hits the gym and is gone. He hates his job but there is no way out - not with me sitting at home trying in vain to write.

I miss working so much. I wish I could tell you there are so many great jobs in drama but there aren't. The ones that come up involve being on set until all hours or living outside London at some point - both impossible for me. How did I get here? I worked so hard in my life to end up here?? I could send out my CV and live in hope - but I have no idea how to make it all work around Husband's hours and Sproglet. Oh god, I've said this before. I'm going round in fucking circles. I wish it would stop. I just want a normal life. Is that too much to ask?

Then I scream at Sproglet, take it out on him which makes me want to stab myself in the heart. He looks at me with bewildered eyes and says 'Mummy, if you are upset I will have to hug you.' as the tears trip my cheeks.

I want a solution. I want somehow for it not to be so hard to be a working Mother. Why do men get to go to work every day and simply leave the home, without looking back, without worry or guilt or beating themselves up because they forgot to send a kid's b'day card two days ago?

Why at 37 do I feel I am starting again? Again? I won't blog again until I get out of this miserable cycle. I'm boring myself. That's what happens when I live in my head all day... I know that I want to die before I am old and lonely. Because there is nothing worse in life than loneliness. It eats away at you, swallows you up, the silence is deafening. I don't think I'm meant to be a Mother. I can't bear being alone at home with a child all day. Where did I go wrong?

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Nausea and then some

Oh my god this nausea is unbearable. I wake up - nauseous. I shower and dress and it ceases temporarily. I eat, thinking, hey, if I eat, I won't feel nauseous anymore. Wrong! Still nauseous. Oh and then comes my favourite bit - the heartburn. Swigging on Gaviscon and it aint even 8:30am. I seem to (sorry to share) burp more than a barfly on his tenth pint. Apparently ginger helps - so I invested - ginger tea, ginger biscuits, just ginger on it's own. Nope. Nausea goes 'oh you think you can wipe me out eh?' and makes a quick call to the head of Heartburn who agrees to take on the baton of discomfort. So the nausea leaves to be replaced with a raging heartburn! Hurrah! Heartburn punches his card a while later and then good old nausea returns, energised after his little break. This fine cycle of despair continues all day. Punctuated with me trying to eat. But what to eat? When everything SMELLS so strong and is so.... smelly! Everything turns my stomach.

Oh the joy of pregnancy. At 8 weeks. And still I can't share this with you. Better go, my ginger tea feels like I've swallowed a tonne of white wine and my oesophagus is on fire....

Monday, 3 May 2010

I didn't think it would be like this... or maybe I did.

So I wake up at 7:10am and I know there are twelve gaping hours before Sproglet will be bathed and bedded. He trundles into the bedroom all crusty eyes and bed hair, soft and warm, curling into my outstretched arms. Husband is working and a friend cancelled plans we had made so the whole day stretches before me expecting to be filled. It overwhelms me with how I am going to fill it. I wrack my brains and try to come up with something that doesn't cost lots of cash and will fill our time on this wet, grey, forgotten kind of day.

I cried myself to sleep last night. Husband told me I am never happy, never satisfied. Maybe he is right. I was trying to articulate how I am feeling at the moment. Is hard to find the words. I don't think this writing malarkey is for me. I am lonely. So lonely. Devoid of daily interaction and banter. I'm like a plant that needs watered by conversation and people and laughter or I begin to wilt. I write and write - that is the fun part - but there is no-one to bounce an idea off, or skive for five minutes by the watercooler with, gossiping about last night's Glee ep, and I miss company so badly. It's not like I can pop into London, and have lunch - as I have to be back by 3 to collect Sproglet - and anyway, I'd feel guilty of I didn't have my head to the grindstone as Husband is supporting this whole writing lark. The day whirs past in a slew of words and chores and then I pick up Sproglet and desperately try and keep him amused without resorting to TVs and DS machines for the next 4 hours. Then he goes to bed and I am alone again - Husband not home until the wee hours. Repeat this on a endless cycle.

I'd love to join the gym, but can't afford it with no income. When the book is finished and summer has set, what then? There are no script editor jobs. Even the ones that exist involve long long hours on set, or travelling to Leeds or Cardiff - and how am I meant to do that with Sproglet at school and Husband's crazy hours? How come some people get it all - the career, the kids, the house, the life? I worked so so hard to become a script editor. I fought for my job and whilst there I worked my ass off. For what? Where do I go from here? I'm too old, too past it to present telly again, (on that point - where do ex tv workers go? I have always wondered when the youth driven energy sapping world of tv has done with you and spat you back out the real world, where do you go?) I have no idea what would work around the other commitments in my life, but I do know that I miss the comradeship of a job.

I've moved to an area with good schools and greenery and it truly is lovely. But it is so hard to find anyone on a similar wave length. This only exacerbates how I feel. Did I make the wrong move? Should I have stayed in a small flat in London to at least know working Mums, or Mums who aren't career Mothers? I feel like I'm losing myself, slipping deeper under as this melancholy washes over me. There is no end in sight. I keep thinking that all the career paths I have chosen have only led to dead ends. Like I'm in some maze and I cannot see my way out of it. Still the bills keep coming.... And if you want to see people or have them over for dinner - well that costs - and how you gonna pay?

This was my fear about my new path. But I had no choice, my job was ending, I'd done my time there, I had to forge a plan. I just don't know if it is the right one. Trouble is, I have no idea how to get the right one, or worse, if it even exists.