The invisible woman

invisible woman

It is often said in life if you are given lemons, to make lemonade.

This is a good analogy. It’s basically the idea to make the best of everything. Just if you really are going to make lemonade, follow a good recipe with plenty of sugar or you will resemble a bulldog chewing a wasp!

So recently I have at long last decided to do the same with my alter ego. To down a glass of it and embrace the afterglow!

So who is she, my alter ego, drum roll please…….she is ‘The invisible woman’. Why? Simple. I am to certain individuals to be seen, just not in public, no sorry I will amend that, anywhere, not even the front doorstep of my own home. My voice should never be heard. My name cannot be uttered, let alone put in a text message for necessary arrangements. My physical form is required only when there really is NO alternative for childcare.

It’s a FACT. A sad fact. It is not the ranting’s of one hysterical or bitter stepmother. These descriptions really do outline the treatment I receive. However, these actions are all a certain individuals choice not mine, might I add in any way, shape or invisible form. Everybody knows it. It is the proverbial big, glowing, pink elephant in the room.

It is unpleasant. It is unfair on the children. I have tried to improve things, but it’s like flogging a dead horse and well eventually even I, someone who rarely gives up on anything, has thrown in the towel. The little shit similarly. We play the game. We avoid pouring oil on the fire. We are not defeated. We are just being clever.

I can hear some mumblings now. Why do it that way? Why not put your foot down? Been there. Done that. The kids have worn the t-shirt and quite frankly that is the worst bit. It is the kids that suffer. Emotional upset. Forced choices. A guilty conscience. Resentment. Confusion. You get the picture. I will not be the cause of any of these emotions.

Besides if I really am the invisible woman, I may as well flaunt it. She was several people across a number of stories. My favourite. The super hero!

Therefore I will mostly be channelling my inner ‘Sue Storm’ of the ‘Fantastic Four’. She was sexy, Jessica Alba sexy to be more precise, rocked a near perfect body in a skin tight, blue, cat suit. A force for good, she was intelligent, well liked and loved by her family.

So maybe being invisible is not such a bad thing after all. There is like the lemons and lemonade many positives to be seen from my invisible status. And as a wise woman once said, it is not the opinion that matters but who holds it. Enough said.

Oh and of course, if you see a woman in a blue cat-suit on the school run you will know who I really am! #newuniform

I’m back!

reopen

It’s exactly five weeks, three days, 12 hours, 52 minutes and various seconds since I blogged. Crap or what? Well in a positive way it’s actually a ‘what’. As basically having set up my own business I have been too busy to blog.

I also think I peaked too soon – I blogged twice in one day at one point!

So what is the real reason for my extended writing holiday?

Well its simple. you see I no longer have hours to kill at a desk, in a communal office, where I need to look like I am actually working as opposed to surfing the internet like a cyber-loafing, free loading, idle idiot.

As they say every cloud has a silver lining. The cloud being the lack of blogging, not the successful business bit.

I also have to be honest, I have struggled to know what to write about. A lot of things have gone on. Some mundane, some not so. Some firsts but definitely not lasts in terms of various scenarios. And well some things have very much remained the same but in a heightened, more reoccurring fashion.

At times gin seemed the only way forward. The shame being it was 10am on a Monday morning and well drinking behaviour like that is a slippery slope. And besides with my work load I did not have time to give it real decision making time and energy, i.e. making a list of pros and cons and therefore how to write about it.

Yes I am well and truly cryptic blogging. So let’s cut to the chase.

My blogging sabbatical is over. All change from here on in. I will be blogging again regularly with gusto. So watch this space.

Is there a ‘I love page three’ t-shirt I can buy?

nicki-2

Page three, on and off like a light switch. Firstly there was a no-show then a, true to form, chest first reappearance. The tits did the talking so to speak back to their rightful place, on page three. I still in truth cannot believe that it causes such horror, annoyance and bad press. Whatever you want to call it I just cannot get excited or rather offended by it and the silly protest against it.

I mean really, let’s look at this in the bigger picture of life, the world, and the lives of women. Page three apparently objectifies us. Rubbish. We as women are objectified 24/7. You walk down the street, the hairy bottomed builders whistle and taunt. You are at the gym, the meat head muscle bound numpty’s are looking or shall I say leering. Heck even your fellow kind objectify you. Women are each other’s worst critic.

Women are objectified. Always. It’s a fact. It’s part of being a woman. Page three is a very public example of it. But like the builders wolf whistling, it’s actually harmless. There are no seedy pimps bullying and controlling anyone, these booby blessed girls choose to do it. Topless modelling is a career they embrace, love and make lucrative earnings from.  I mean isn’t that what feminism is all about, freedom of choice? Doing what we choose not what society dictates we should? Earning our own crust?

Besides men are portrayed in a similar vain to that of page three on occasion. Heat magazine has ‘torso of the week’. Beckham and those underwear adverts. The Chippendales and of course, the movie ‘The Full Monty’. Are men offended? No.

In a week where two qualified medical professionals, doctors to be exact, faced court after carrying out genital mutilation on a female patient, should we not be focussing on the bigger picture of matters such as these which are quite frankly appalling and should not be happening in any way shape or form? Surely this is slightly more important or am I going mad?

And there are bigger, pressing matters yet. Domestic violence. Human trafficking. Vulnerable girls being groomed for sex by large groups of predatory men. There is a massive and ever increasing amount of child porn material available on line. And speaking of porn. If page three objectifies us what does all that readily available porn that many teenage boys view nightly do to us? The violent kind. The completely degrading kind. I wonder.

Why are we not campaigning on these matters? Why are the brave bunch who took on The Sun not channelling their energies into these far more important matters? It appears that modern feminism is about equal choice for women in everything even if it’s not really relevant. If it’s not page three, it’s top jobs in certain industries. Maybe women choose not to work in said ‘anti-female’ industries, or dare I say it, maybe our strengths lie elsewhere. It’s not a bad thing. It’s not anti-feminism. It’s just life.

I ask you, are male doctors offended when we specify a female doctor to talk about our lady troubles. How many male midwives are there and if you got one when your vagina was about to double in size would you feel comfortable about it? Let’s be honest probably not. Are the men complaining? Well we know the answer.

Remember the book, ‘Men are from mars, women are from Venus’ well it was written and titled as such for a good reason. We are opposites and for the good of jobs, life choices and everything else sometimes despite all this new equality for women stuff we need to stick to it. Accept it. Maybe even embrace it. It’s a good thing.

And finally on the notion of being topless, and it being banned. Does this apply on the beach? I am starting to worry about my tan lines. Should big movies be banned if they feature a topless shot? I think of Jamie Lee Curtis in ‘Trading Places’ to name but one. Female icons who strip off, are they to be bullied? Madonna and Nikki Minaj to name a few are well published example of celebs doing boobies. Are we going to apply the no topless rule to these and countless other scenarios?

This proves how ridiculous this whole campaign is. Women actually campaigned for freedom of speech and here we are actually campaigning for examples of this to cease.

I will leave it there. The Sun and its page three is harmless. I applaud people who campaign, the time, the energy, you are amazing. But I will say one thing. In the anti-female world, there are bigger fish which need to be fried. So let’s go swim with the sharks and really make a difference where it is actually needed. (And yes I checked that sharks are actually types of fish.)

Happiness is eating and farting!

This week I have been married 9 months. All say aaaaaaaaah! It is a modern miracle let alone the modern fairytale I let you read earlier this week.

It has been great, life changing, confidence building and most of all flatulence inducing. Yes one of the biggest things has been finally, after nearly five years together, breaking wind in peace to a small audience. Finally being given the green light to let out a rasper in front of the other half. It is so liberating.

That wedding band I wear, well two of them, gave me the confidence to do it and not worry about being dumped for non-lady like behaviour. I mean who ever heard of divorce due to human produced gas explosions.

Hey do not judge its human and when you have reverse ventilation issues like I do, trust me, this is big! This is not ground breaking but wind breaking!

The other big thing is food. Getting married, in fact cohabiting for 3 years prior prevented starvation. My starvation. Or rather me turning into a life sized hard boiled egg.

Prior to living with the little shit I literally lived off eggs, scrambled eggs, boiled not poached eggs, an occasional scotch egg, pasta, toast, stir fry and a few more eggs. That’s a lie. Large bottles of Becks beer and spinach and Ricotta cheese pizza on a Saturday night were also menu options of choice.

My love of eggs was once so great that with an ex boyfriend I owned several chickens! The idea was to sell the produce. In truth I ate them all.

No wonder when I was more Bridget Jones, less wicked Cheshire stepmother my flatulence was worse! Egg fuelled flatulence is like super charged unleaded petrol. You get a lot more for your money!

You see I no longer starve or have share options with the fresh egg company as the little shit is a feeder. This ‘feeding’ is not the stuff of weird dating websites. He is a healthy normal weight and I am nowhere near an obese state. Well unless you refer to the anorexics scale then I am massive! No he loves to cook.

It’s sexy. Well that’s a lie. Its a necessity and sexy, as otherwise the kids growth would be stunted and well my flatulence would be even worse from my immense, continuos, huge consumption of eggs in various guises. It was ok living solo to be the equivalent of a human whoopee cushion but not for a loving family environment.

So as I sit here on another Sunday night awaiting my made from scratch steak and ale stew with potato croquettes for tea, I also breathe a sigh of relief that my days of cooking like Bridget Jones and the famous blue soup are over.

There is one small downside. All this #antijan eating, drinking and thinking is great but I am a vain bitch who likes to stay under a size 12. So all this feeding that I get has not done much for the size of my ass. I am a stone heavier than when he first cooked me steak with Béarnaise sauce. But on the positive a portion of it is in my now nicely enlarged breasts. #cloud #silverlinings

Hence I am frequenting the gym. Often it is part of my daily routine. So much so little shit recently asked me if I was having an affair? He was of course joking. Maybe I should tell him the truth. Vanity rules and yes I may now occasionally fart like a rhino in front of him, and be good with it, but the thought of getting too voluptuous in front of him is too much to bear.

So yes marriage is fabulous. Honesty reigns…….well in most things just not my vain side or rather my more voluptuous vain side.

IMG_0580

Posess and control? #madness

A very wise friend, a daughter of an avid Buddhist type, once said that ‘all our problems are caused by our desire to possess and control’. When she first said it, I did not believe it. But then I thought about it and the penny dropped. It’s so true, it’s scary.

When you initially consider it you think of it as monetary. Yes money. We are told L’argent, as the French call it, is power. Power ultimately leads to being in control. Money also gains you stuff or ‘possessions’. You can shop till you drop.

But what else does it apply to? Well everything. Friendships, relationships, shopping habits, fitness plans, diets, dog handling, cooking, nail painting, bikini waxing, dry January, sugar detoxing and my favourite……parenting.

Taboo I know, after all I am not a parent. But I figure I can comment as I witness parenting first hand, daily, hourly, in various guises, at the school gate, supermarket, bus stop, parties, you name it, it surrounds me. I also deal with parental emotions first hand being a stepmother. You see what it really does to someone when they only see their kids half the time, for the good and bad.

From experience, looking in from the childless world I navigate, to have a child, is to many, like having the ultimate possession. They are priceless, one of a kind so it appears many feel the need to behave in accordance with this. Think security which tops that used on the Crown Jewels.

Parenting is seemingly all about control. That’s reasonable. In many cases, it has to be. The child’s safety, health and happiness often depends on it. However, like the control on the Queens favourite hat, sometimes it’s control gone mad. Control for the bad, the obsessive. The ‘crap on anyone you see fit along the way’ kind of controlling behaviour. Think pushy parents, tiger mothers and the ultimate, mother of the bride. All controlling. All barking mad.

I know what you are thinking, that this is a biased perspective from someone who knows shit as she is not a biological parent. Maybe so. But like Tim Wilcox BBC journalist, or maybe not for much longer, I am entitled to an opinion. Just as he touched on Jewish behaviour I can touch on parenting.

But is it all healthy? What I refer to is this attitude. Possess and control. Possess and control. Possess and control. It’s like watching the Dalek’s on Doctor Who. It’s crazy. It’s a possession alright, a human possession of the psychotic, irrational kind. Intelligent individuals, even some very dear friends, quite literally have leave of any kind of sensible, common sense behaviour when it comes to their kids.

I thought parenting was a selfless thing, ‘it’s all about the kids’ I am frequently told. Well I’m sorry for many it’s not. Or rather it is an attempt that often fails miserably. It’s more about them. They have to be owner and chief. Their way or the highway. Give the kids a break.

The desire to control the kids, their behaviours, their whereabouts, even when they take a number two it appears, come what may, no matter what continent you the parent might actually be in is paramount. It is a painful thing to watch, let alone be on the receiving end of. I mean do I need to text you the lunch menu so you can agree their food choices whilst we holiday in the jungles of Bolivia?

If it were a movie, it would be ‘sleeping with the enemy’. The kids will however end up like Julia Roberts, throwing themselves overboard to escape, if you continue to be so controlling.

Or worse still they will turn into control freaks themselves. Remember the concept of learned behaviour??

So obsessive parents, why not let them be. After all they often have two parents. The ‘left home alone with the kids’ parents are more often than not savvy and capable. Some kids even have a bonus parent like me who is equally in possession of a working brain with common sense as a bonus skill. So wherever you are globally, even Outer Mongolia, staying on the side of said country with no phone lines, no transport links aside from donkeys and a population of five, four humans and said donkey, your child will be well looked after in your absence.

Furthermore, you will only cause trouble whilst trying to run your own life and everybody else’s simultaneously. It would be a pain in the ass if you did this without a 12 hour time difference let alone with one. Remember, nobody likes a control freak. FACT!

What’s more the kids themselves, like all dogs, need to get off the leash sometimes and do as they will. But hopefully not pee against a lamp post or shit on the pavement. Let them go. Let them do their own arranging. They will not forget you, they might even appreciate you more when they realise how much stuff you actually do for them.

And if they don’t, well you can tweet, text, snapchat or BBM them incessantly till they return. I have also heard satellites are cheap to hire now if you really want to stalk them in style. Helicopters can also be rented by the hour.

This controlling behaviour is all well and good. But will you have the energy for it when you are elderly and they are middle aged? I think not. Simple #GIVEITUP. Let them go.

Controlling and possessing them in whatever manner you see fit is not caring it’s stifling. Treating your child in this way is weird. After all, there is no ‘child’ category on eBay so you cannot buy and sell them as objects, at least not in this country, so why treat them like you can? THEY ARE NOT POSESSIONS, THEY ARE HUMANS. (All said in a Dalek voice.)

On a final note. Take yourself back. How would you have felt treated like this by your parents? There is silence. I rest my case. As I tell my stepdaughters daily treat people as you want to be treated yourself.

A modern fairytale – and how it really ends

There was once a girl who lived in a small but perfectly formed house. It was filled with many beautiful things wrapped in tissue paper, lovingly placed in cardboard boxes. Yes, shoes. There were lots of them. She was not nicknamed Imelda for nothing.

This girl, let’s call her Imelda, dreamt of meeting the man of her dreams. She had simple tastes. She wished for one thing only, that her Prince had a good sense of humour. Well maybe more than one thing, as she also hoped he had not been hit by the ugly stick.  She knew that beauty came from within, but even she acknowledged that looks did matter a little, well slightly, along with big feet.

She dated for years. Meeting men was like spotting a dodo in the local park, it was impossible. So she turned to the internet. She frequented those sites a lot. The clean ones of course. No bondage, chains or anything else of a weird nature was wanted.

It was bad. She considered a long term holiday to the Isle of Lesbos. But at least there was variety to the dodgy blokes. Old men. Young men. Ugly men. Male models.  Gingers. Policemen. Firemen. Serial killer fanatics. Potential serial killers. Pathological liars. Sociopaths. Married men. Not quite unmarried men. Gay men not out the closet yet. Gay men getting back in the closet. Wig wearers. Heel wearers. Doctors. Dentists. And the list could go on.

The dates got yet more painful and the supposed chat up lines even more tedious. And then when she thought the male species could not be any worse. It got worse. The spot catcher, and the Yorkshire ripper fanatic quite literally tipped her over the edge. Watching paint dry became pleasurable. A pin in the eye was fun. Lesbos was calling AGAIN.

One day she admitted defeat and opened an account with Anne Summers which provided free batteries with all purchases.

Then something strange happened. Lightning struck. Her fairy tale began. Her Prince Charming appeared from the house next door to her incredibly unhappy, on the brink of being divorced friend. Thinking back this friend was a little like one of the ugly sisters as she was old, bitter and jealous of Imelda’s new life.

The prince appeared in a flowery shirt (it was later binned) and an amazing pair of blue eyes. It was love at first sight. Well him not the shirt. He was funny, suave, interesting and a little sophisticated. He even knew how to use the weather app on his iPhone. Not bad for an over forty Imelda thought.

Who knew love in fact dulled all the senses not just eyesight? Well it’s true. Imelda was so blinded by love she missed that he was a smoker. Not once when he stuck his tongue down her throat, very nicely too might I add, or held her close whilst she was in an alcohol induced coma that first night, did she taste or smell the nicotine!

Copious amounts of alcohol, steak dinners, a zebra sofa, hiding behind said sofa, temporary facial paralysis, laughter and a few new pairs of shoes later her fairy tale came true. She married Prince Charming, she lived in his castle, a nice detached house in Cheshire, and they lived happily ever after with his two children…..or did they?

Well yes they did. But this is a modern fairy tale, we are no longer in the dark ages in storyland or anywhere else.

This story was not going to end with a nice wedding, in a tent in their garden and a happy honeymoon in Barbados. It needs a bit of afterlife.

In the afterlife, after wedding that is, they were incredibly happy. But let’s be honest about it too.

Firstly there was no appearance of an evil woman plotting the downfall of the children. Imelda loved her stepdaughters very dearly and it showed. She was always more fairy godmother than wicked stepmother, and as all mothers are was taxi driver, laundry queen and general hair and make-up guru too.

There were losses of shoes, but only to her stepdaughters, who as they got older took a shine to some of the many styles in her closet.

The wicked characters were present just not in the usual fairy tale guise. Instead of the three ugly sisters there were the bitter and twisted bitches on the school run, down the pub, at the gym in fact everywhere she went there was an annoying woman ready to put her down.

But she did not care. In the words of Barbara Streisand she was a woman in love.

And finally there were no more children. The truth was this was a modern marriage not based around the need for family as this already existed, and besides Imelda had many children of different guises, shoes included, and this was just the way she liked it.

The end.

Turning over a new leaf for 2015 – well at least I am!

childfree

Resolutions are over. Confessions are the 2015 essential. Mine is a simple one. I am CBC.

This is not a weird substance addiction, mental illness or a personality disorder worthy of an ‘on the spectrum’ reference. No it is very simple, I am childless by choice.

I am lucky, there is no sad fertility story. I am not past it either, although at 36 apparently I could well be. There is no throwing myself on the sword for the need of a previously reproduction proven other half either. No it’s plain and simple. I am just not that interested.

I like kids too. Just not all the time, surgically attached to me like a large life size tumour that eventually starts to answer back. In short, I like buying shoes, babysitting dogs and not having baby poo under my finger nails. Simples.

So why the confession. I have written on it before. I have to justify it weekly. What’s more it’s 2015, a new year. It could be the year that Hilary Clinton will be the first female US president, K-Middy has opted for 3 kitchens not just the average one, and Jordan aka Katie Price has finally had a breast reduction. The latter is probably the most controversial. But my little revolutionary life choice is not six figure tabloid newsworthy information in the big picture of the modern world. FACT.

So why am I bothering? Because the #childfreeshaming does not seem to be stopping. To be asked once is fair enough. To be asked repeatedly is just not acceptable. It’s like dealing with a child who thinks if they ask enough their parent will eventually give in. Sorry no, not this one.

Like a grammar school education and a well ironed shirt for some give the right impression. For a lot of women, stretching your nether regions to the point of breaking and pushing a child or several out has a similar effect on your social standing. What a load of donkey dung.

You may be a happy, intelligent and successful woman in your own sweet way, but you are treated like an imbecile who has had her brain removed should you choose to keep your bits tightly intact. Give me a Jehovah’s Witness over these over fertile, reproducing baby bashers any day of the week.

Repeatedly when quizzed, I was a reoccurring, pathological, lack of fertility billy bullshitter. God knows why I cared so much as the people who ask and judge are not just seriously thick and socially inept, but often the least relevant to my life. I succumbed to social pressure.

Well no more. I am proud of my choice as it’s the right choice for me. I wish I could meet more women of the same social group who were in a physical form not on twitter but it’s a new year so who knows.

That’s not to diminish my CBC Twitter pals. They are fantabulous. Amazing. Strong. Independent. I have pseudo lesbian crushes on them all as much as I do on actress Gillian Anderson in BBC2 drama ‘The Fall’. My admiration for them is huge as I get them and admire their strength of mind, incredibly thick skin and determination to stay true to their chosen path.

They have helped me get to this this milestone. I may well be a little like a teenager again but this time I fit in. I am one of the ‘in-crowd’. God it feels good.
I will say again I am childfree by choice and proud! Do you think I should get a t-shirt? Answers on a postcard please.
xx

January 3rd 2015 – judged much? Too much! (The edited version)

(Thanks to @steppingthrough a wise lady who lives on the other side of world. This is dedicated to you! #baconsaver and I am very much the proverbial bacon.)

A very wise bloke I know once described a woman who was at the top of the tree in a male orientated industry in a very clever way. He said ‘she had had to work twice as hard as any man to get there despite being twice as good as them all’. 

Step mothering is similar. Love, trust and respect from the children is never a given as it is with biological parents. And like the high flying female executive you really do have to work twice as hard as any biological counterpart to get it.

You have to earn it and often it’s like riding your bike on a false flat. You think you have made it to the top but in fact you are still miles away from where you want to be. 

Similarly like downing a yard of ale in one go, it often leaves you feeling dizzy and breathless from the ridiculous drive to get it all done perfectly that all stepmothers appear to suffer from.

It has taken me four and a half years to get to a good place. I no longer seek perfection just a happy normality. Simply, I do the best I can.

It has taken tears, tantrums, stress and immense frustration on both the side of me and the kids, but we are now in a happy place. We respect each other’s limits and behave accordingly. They take discipline from me. The ‘you are not my mum’ retorts have been rare.

However this kind of agreeable, adult behaviour is not always common throughout my world. People like to get involved. They like to oversee. They try to over rule and direct me. It’s annoying at best.

These incidents sadly are frequent. The guilty parties who like to start them are everywhere, although I am yet to be approached by one in a public toilet. Small mercies! 

The situations are personal beyond belief and not for the good. Sometimes they even have an audience. 

They can be telling offs. If I were near stairs I would probably be put on the naughty step, while the children are cosseted to help them recover from the evil ways of the supposed wicked stepmother.

They are insulting. Like my big wedding photos. Apparently that is how I looked, yes BIG.

They are undermining. Redoing my work around the house. Then telling me to my face that it was not good enough hence their choice to meddle.

Then finally it’s the reference to my childless choice. Why? They do not understand it nor do they try. The prejudice is clear. They think less of me for it. They try to change my mind. It is offensive. 

Mostly I calm down, I forgive, I think of good excuses as to why they might do and say things to put me down. Yes I get frustrated. Yes I get annoyed. But I never bite.

But who knows why this time, after a certain incident I cannot let it go. I will not let it go. Maybe it’s as my tongue has nearly been completely bitten off. Is there tongue repair surgery available on the NHS? I may well need it.

It’s simple. Sometimes people just need telling, or at least getting the vibe of clear displeasure from you. Well when it’s this or no tongue I just have to be selfish. 

Being a stepmother is a tough gig and I do not need assistance of any negative manner to make it more so. If they only knew how much damage their behaviour can actually do. Months, days and hours of hard work undone as they feel they know better. 

They chip away at you. Your confidence is damaged and you go back to running around in a manner resembling a Tasmanian devil on acid in a bid to be perfect. You go back to square one.

The kids doubt you, your meaning, your approach.

You are made to feel bad about yourself. You question choices you know are right for you.

Many words spring to mind, lots of expletives included. ‘Cheers’ with a hint of extreme sarcasm is mainly on my agenda along with a large desire to say exactly how I feel with both large barrels. 

Although short and sweet would work too. Two words. Two syllables. Last word being off.

But what is the point. There is no point. Well aside from retaining a fully functional tongue, I will look a total bitch or worse like the child hating, wicked stepmother. Short or long the expletive fuelled rant will only reflect badly on me. 

Why can’t they just give it up? Leave me to do as I see fit and not complicate matters. I envy the time and energy these people have to get involved so much in a life they know so little about. What drugs are they taking? Are they available over the counter?

Parenting is a personal matter. Not to be judged or undermined by anyone whether family or not. I wonder how it would be if the boot were on the other foot. 

Can you imagine this question being asked. ‘Tell me why did you have five children all of which are rude and bad mannered?’ I rest my case. I can see tumbleweed rolling past as I type.

But there is one saving grace. The snipers, judges and grinders are all equally quick to judge most peoples parenting skills and life choices not just mine. At least I am not alone. #Parentshaming it seems is a common and much loved past time for many. 

I am no ogre despite some clear nods to this. Nor am I a freak for not wanting kids myself. I discipline when I see fit. I will continue to do this. I will not be bullied by over protective and cosseting family members with a point to prove. 

Nor will the high and mighty people around me who like to judge and snipe grind me down. I am Childless by choice so please mind your own business.

Blood may be thicker than water. Parenting experience of a biological nature is all well and good too. But please until you walk a mile in my shoes, do not attempt to steal said shoes from under me. Do not try to tell me you know better. You don’t. You are not me. You are probably not a childless stepmother.

Like an earlier post this week. I will repeat my mantra to them. #GIVEITUP

New Years Eve – nob or legend!?

So it’s New Years Eve. There is lots of talk of resolutions, new beginnings, sugar withdrawal diets, make ups, break ups and even for some just the idea of carrying on as usual. The latter is my favourite and in this day and age is positively revolutionary.

Anyways I digress as usual. Maybe this could be something to do……stop rambling! 

Each year I think to myself ooh what should I do? What could I give up? What can I change about myself in a bid to be happier? But it’s all a little like spending lots of money on yet another highly over priced face cream. There are no guarantees in this lifetime or the next that it will actually make any bloody difference!

So instead I like to do a little personal chastising and praising. Remembering all the good things I did but equally reminding myself of when I was a total nob so I do not do it again. But again generally this does not work as I am often a complete nob.

The little shit plays a game called ‘nob or legend’ and for the sake of this exercise I will be following his rules. It is simple. If I was good I was legendary if not I was a nob. Keeping up? Here goes.

This year I got married. I am now the mrs, wifey, the other half, the better half, his third leg, and any of the other descriptions but hopefully never the ball and chain. This is my least favourite. Am I a nob or legend? Probably both at different times but then who is’nt.

I am officially a stepmother. I would say I am legendary at it. They wear my clothes and shoes, use my make up and have a first class chauffeur service courtesy of moi. What is nobbish in any of the above? Nada.

I pride myself on being a good friend. What’s more should you ever really describe yourself as a legend of a friend? No. Then you really would be a complete nob who is friendless.

I made a new promise earlier this year to take no crap and quit biting my tongue when people were inappropriate to me. I did it. It acted like a filter to separate the men from the proverbial boys. It was often awkward, but I am better off for it. Some would now describe me as a nob but the words glass house, stones and bad throwing spring to mind. After all if you give it you get it. Well at least with me you do.

I left my job under a small cloud. I was probably a nob on occasion. There is however no nob without first, bigger, more nobby behaviour. However, it’s all good. In my previous company I am now something of a legend. I am the girl who took no shit and gave the proverbial two fingers to the management nobs as she went out the front door.

I continue to ski. One word. Nob. I repeat Nob. But then so are most on the piste, despite their often inflated opinions of themselves. If they were chocolate they would eat themselves. It’s so nobby it’s embarrassing.

Wifi genius. Enough said. When it breaks, I fix it. Legend. Or so the kids tell me and I will take it.

Three words describe me when it comes to social media, very big nob. But like the lots of people who ski and think they are Hermann Maier, champion downhill skier, its very common, maybe even the norm, so I do not care. I am far from alone.

Swearing. I do it a lot. Too much. Profusely. Therefore I am a total nob or as I would rather say maybe a complete dick.

Nob spotting. I am great at it. It is a favourite game of mine. Potential nob title winners are everywhere. The pub, the supermarket, the neighbour, even the people you mix with socially can in reality, if you are honest can be complete nobs. Am I a legend at nob spotting? No. Why? Simple. It’s just too easy to find them. 

This is just a small snapshot of the things I consider. Deep hey?

As you can see nothing is taken too seriously, including my often harsh and self deprecating assessment of myself. I am mostly a nob and rarely legendary! 

But this the real point. It’s a simple life mantra which runs through it all. I try to apply this each and every year. It’s easy. To not take things too seriously. Especially yourself.

It’s good to be a nob. After all nobody likes a legend or rather someone who considers them self to be one.

Maybe this is all very easy. My life is a happy one and many are not so lucky. Real shit happens and the feelings that follow are human.

But how often are things really that bad? For most, rarely. Hence why when the going is good and life is normal we should love it! It might not be an adrenaline fuelled rush just a steady journey, but we need to see the fun in it and be grateful! 

In the words of my dad, ask yourself, when things seem bad, has anybody died?

So I will be taking on 2015 in my normal vein, happy, positively, totally taking the piss out of my nobby self as I go!

See you next year! X

30/12/2014 – #competition

In life competition comes from all angles. Work, sport, even friends and family often have a knack of making us competitive. 

Women are notoriously competitive with each other even when friends. So what if women are pitched directly against each other, or so they may feel. What happens then? It gets ugly.

Think dirty tricks from presidential campaigns of the Nixon era. They are ready to trip each other up as much as possible and stuff who gets in the way. Well at least one party always is. 

I recently sat minding my own business in a coffee shop. Two women behind me were enjoying a coffee. I heard the following words. ‘The girls will never prefer her to me. She is nothing to them. So what she is married to their dad. I will always come first! I will make it so.’ 

Translation. The stepmother is her competition and she, the mother, will win the contest come what may. Even if she has to use her kids to do so as her later conversation suggested.

I will not lie it upset me. That could have been me she talked of. 

She was clearly terrified that the new woman in her ex’s life was going to out shine her. But how could she? Simple, she could not. No woman can ever replace that of a child’s biological mother. 

And besides why make it so competitive? There is no need. Who knows you could be healthy allies.

Yes stepmothers may want the love of their stepchildren, but surely this is healthy. I know I do. But most will acknowledge that the love formed is something far away from motherly love. It is a different love. True in form, genuine in feeling and often selfless on the part of the woman.

In life there are few if any one horse races, dead cert bets or sure fire winners. But this scenario could actually be one. No mother can ever be outdone by her step counterpart well not unless the mother becomes a mass murderer or worse a constant wifi disabler. Even in death she cannot be replaced.

But why do so many women fall into the same trap as my fellow coffee drinker? The paranoia, the competitive approach, the bad mouthing, the under mining and separation tactics, the negative promotion of their counterpart? It is simple. Love.

A child, their child is their most precious thing. The thought of losing it is too much to bare. This individual or for some a number of them come before everything. To many, another woman in their lives, helping them, nurturing them in a similar fashion terrifies them! 

Hence the behaviour. Even the most intelligent women will suffer at its hands. But as Beyoncé said to be crazy in love is common.

These ladies need to remember a few simple things. 

It’s okay for their kids to like or even love their stepmother. It’s healthy. Would you prefer they hated them which would be incredibly unhealthy for them and lead to a life of partial misery? No you would not.

Yes some stepmothers may reciprocate this love and this is healthy too. But most will acknowledge that the love formed is something far away from motherly love.

The relationship that manifests is different and cannot be compared to what they hold. It is not a threat to yours.

These women more often than not have the kids best interests at heart. They do not plot their disappearance, downfalls or any other such negative scenarios.

Also consider this. It is actually hard to be a stepmother, different to being a mum but just as tough in lots of ways. This is without the dirty tactics fired at you like bullets from a tommy gun. So maybe if you feel the need, think twice.

Put yourself in her shoes. How would you feel on the receiving end? Probably not very happy. So next time stop, relax, give yourself a reality check. Chances are she is not a mass murderer or anything near it, so why sweat it all so much. 

In short give the woman a break. Or as I like to say #GIVEITUP .