Sunday, 31 August 2008


OK so I'm going to have a bit of a rant now. Bloody, bloody holidaymakers! We run a small business looking after holiday cottages. It's stressful and hard work, but flexible and only needs two or three days work a week, in theory. At least that's what we thought when we started it five years ago. It was fun then, it's not anymore. Richard runs it you see, or he did. When he had his heart attack I was forced to take over. Now I know it's how we earn our living, and I know the show must still go on and all that. But when you've been working your whatsits off, are worried sick about your husband who's in hospital, trying to run a business that you usually don't have much to do with and have a disabled child still on school holiday, the last thing you need is someone calling you on a Sunday afternoon to moan that they have been given the wrong colour towels!! I kid you not. The complaint wasn't that the towels were dirty, smelly, tatty, nothing wrong with them at all, they were just the wrong colour. Apparently they should have been blue and I had put white ones in. I really think some people have too much time on their hands. And why is it that as soon as someone books a holiday they loose the ability to read. When you book a holiday cottage you're told what time you can get in and what time you should leave by. It says it in big letters on the sheet you get back. So why does no one take any notice of it??! Please, please respect the in and out times if you book a holiday. They are there for a reason. Mind you I'm sure there are those who think they are the only ones in the whole country who ever go on holiday. Likewise there are cottage owners who are convinced they are the only people with a holiday cottage that needs looking after.
On a brighter note Richard is home and doing remarkably well considering. In fact to look at him you wouldn't know there was anything wrong with him. I'm veering between wanting to hit something and wanting to burst into tears. Jamie starts school full time next week and I'm worried about him. He copes so well with anything that's thrown his way, or seems to. But that's the problem. I sometimes worry that he's too like me. I cope with everything thrown my way until I reach a certain point. Once I reach that point it all goes tits up and I end up in a gibbering heap, on the happy pills and sobbing on the councilors shoulder. And the day after Jamie's first day at school we have to take him to Plymouth (60ish miles) to see his neurosurgeon. I have seventy odd sets of bed linen to wash, dry and iron before Friday, and the tax return to get started on. Oh bloody hell!
So rant over, thank you for listening. I feel a bit better now.
(Grockles is the Cornish for holidaymaker.)

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Heart attack drama

Three days ago my husband Richard had a heart attack. Just like that, out of the blue. He came to bed saying he really didn't feel very well and could I call the doctor. I did and was told to call the ambulance. They were here withing twenty minuets, not bad when you think we live in the back of beyond. They hooked him up to all the bells and whistles and pronounced those words no one wants to hear 'you're having a heart attack'. If I had to try and put my feelings into words it would be a mixture of blind panic and the rush of the stupidest thoughts running through my head. I was scared. Of course when you marry a man twenty two years older that you then you know the day will come when he leaves you for good. I've lived with that for seventeen years and I've accepted it. Richard was 'the one' whatever his age or circumstances, and that was that. But my cousin dropped dead, no other way to describe it, from a heart attack five years ago, he was thirty eight and left a three year old son behind. His name was also Richard and we have a four year old, a strange sense of Dejavue came upon me.
I suppose you could say we were lucky. Three days on and you wouldn't know there was anything wrong with him. Sitting there in his hospital bed he just looks like Richard. He's been given that rare second chance. I think he knows how lucky he was, I certainly know how lucky we are. So many people have given so much without being asked over the last couple of days. I was coping really well until people started being so kind. It was so overwhelming to realise just how much they all care about us. And I've learnt a lot about myself. I've grown up more in the last three days than the last thirty four years. If I can cope with this then I can cope with almost anything.
One thing I know for certain is that things are going to be very different from now on.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

New writing.

This is a short story I wrote recently which I'm quite pleased with, hopefully with good reason!Any feedback welcome (please don't be too rude!).

Living the Dream.

I push the glass door and glide into the hotel. It’s full of light and air. The huge space seems to go up and up for ever. I’m wearing a floral dres of the finest cotton. It floats in the air, but also clings around my body. The off the shoulder cut and bias skirt is sexy, but the floral print is innocent and feminine, the perfect combination. My hair is down and flowing over my shoulders, falling around in long, soft curls. My ballet pumps make no sound on the tiled floor, and to begin with he doesn’t notice me. Then the swish of my skirt catches his eye and he turns. Once he’s seen me he can’t take his eyes off me. His gaze follows me as I walk across to the reception desk. I turn, catching his eye. I glance down quickly, but I can’t help the smile that escapes. He has turned around so that he can still watch me as I wait at the desk. I can feel him behind me, even though he is still on the other side of the room. I glance over my shoulder and give him the smallest of smiles. Then the receptionist greets me and gives me my key. As I turn away to go to the stairs I can see him approaching the desk. He’s saying something to the girl and gesturing in my direction. She’s smiling and I see her write something down for him. Then he turns to watch as I disappear up the stairs to my room…

His fist comes crashing down on the kitchen table and I feel myself jump.
‘I said where’s the tea?!’ He shouts into my left ear. I wince as the sound hits my eardrums.
‘Sorry. Sorry. I’ll do it now.’ I hurry up and go to the kettle. Shit. I should have heard him come in. I was listening for him. Then I closed my eyes for a second. Shit.
‘Is that all you do all day? While I work myself to death eh? Sit around daydreaming? Bloody hell.’ He pulls his boots off and flings them in the corner, bits of dried mud scattering across the floor I’d spent all morning mopping. I sigh.
‘What was that? What have you got to sigh about?’
‘Nothing. I wasn’t sighing, just taking a deep breath.’
‘Huh.’ He snorts and lights up. Now the kitchen will reek of cigarette smoke as well. I don’t sigh again.
‘What’s for dinner?’
‘Bacon and eggs. Is that ok?’
‘ ‘Spose it’ll have to be won’t it?’
‘I can do something else if you’d rather.’ I rack my brains trying to think what else we might be able to have. My money doesn’t come thought till tomorrow so I haven’t done the shopping yet.
‘Don’t bother. I’m going for a bath.’ And he’s gone. I take a deep breath and exhale slowly. Well it could have been worse. I take his boots out to the back step and scrape the mud off with an old knife, banging them together to get the last bits off. Then I sweep the kitchen floor and empty and wash the ashtray. I listen to the sounds coming from the bathroom. When I hear the water start to gurgle down the plughole I put the bacon on and start the oil heating. By the time he re-emerges it’s ready. He sits down in silence and I put his plate in front of him. He attacks his food, shovels it in. Egg drips down his chin and I have to look down. I can’t eat anymore and push my plate away. He looks up.
‘I don’t work all hours so you can chuck it in the bin you know. Give it here it you’re not going to eat it.’ I hand him my plate and he scrapes the remains onto his own. I sit back down and stare at the floor until he’s finished.
‘Right.’ He says getting up and rubbing his hands together. ‘Pub.’ I watch him go to my bag, get my purse out, empty it, and fling it back on the chair. Without another word he’s gone. He’ll be out all evening now.

I hear a quiet tap at my hotel room door. My heart skips a beat and I hold my breath. The tapping comes again. I look in the mirror and run my fingers through my hair. Slowly I walk across the room and gently open the door. There he is. Oh God he’s beautiful. My breath catches in the back of my throat.
‘The girl at the desk gave me your room number. I hope you don’t mind?’
‘No.’ I whisper. He’s wearing those tight black leather trousers he wears on stage sometimes, and his white shirt is open just enough. I bite my bottom lip and look away, I mustn’t stare. When I look up again his eyes are on me and he has that smile, the one I’ve seen so often in photos.
‘I was wondering if I might take you out for dinner?’ He has one hand resting on the top of the doorframe and he’s looking into my eyes.
‘I’d like that.’ And I take the hand he offers me. As soon as my fingers touch the palm of his hand my whole body explodes, and it feels like a hundred ice cubes have been dropped down the back of my dress, my spine quivers.
The food is wonderful I’m sure, but I don’t taste it. I ache all over with longing. Every time I look up he’s looking at me, and it’s a look that makes me tremble, I know he’s thinking what I’m thinking.
Neither of us eats very much and we both pass on coffee. Slowly we walk back up to my room. As soon as we leave the restaurant he takes my hand again and he doesn’t let it go. My skin seems to have melted into his and I have to look down to see where I stop and he begins. Finally we reach my room. I linger over getting my key and opening the door. Silently he watches me, I can feel his breath on the back of my neck. In a moment I’m going to turn, I’m going to have to say goodnight, the evening will be over.
Before I can say anything he has taken my hand and pulled me towards him. I press my other hand on his chest; his heart is beating as fast as mine and I wonder who will expire first. I open my mouth to say something but he dips his head and kisses me. His arms slip round my waist and I feel his hands on my back, burning through the thin fabric of my dress. I lace my fingers around the back of his neck, his hair brushing against my skin. I don’t close my eyes, I want to see him. I want to be sure he’s really there, that this is really happening.
He shifts his weight and pushes me gently against the doorframe. He stops kissing my mouth and moves down to my neck and bare shoulders. Oh God. I can hear myself gasp every time his lips touch me. With a quick movement that I don’t see he spins us round and in through the open door, kicking it shut behind him. He stands before me panting slightly, I’m sure I’ve stopped breathing.
‘God you’re beautiful’ He whispers. When he pulls me to him again I can feel the effect I’m having on him thought the leather of his trousers. I let my hand slide down and over. I hear him groan and feel his back arch towards me.

The back door bangs and my eyes snap open. I pull the duvet up tighter round me and burry down into the pillows. I can hear him thumping about, the fridge door bangs, that’ll be the milk gone for the morning. I close my eyes tight and calm my breathing, turning to face the wall. By the time he fumbles up the stairs and into the bedroom I’m breathing deeply and evenly. Now he’s hopping around on one leg getting his trousers and socks off, now he’s taking his shirt off. I hear a thud and a curse; he’s banged his arm on the wardrobe again. There’s silence, then I feel him flop into bed. I keep my breathing level and keep perfectly still. I can feel his hand, clammy and cold, on my back, I screw my eyes up tighter. His stale breath clouds round me and I have to stifle a cough. He’s pushing his whole body up against my back now. His breath is coming faster and faster and I can feel him rubbing himself against my thighs. He starts grunting like a stuck pig and I have to focus on the patterns dancing on the backs of my eyes to stop myself gagging. Eventually he lets out a loud groan and lolls onto his back. Seconds later there’s snoring.
Carefully I get out of bed and plod to the bathroom. I put on a clean pair of pyjama bottoms from the airing cupboard. Then I go to the kitchen and make myself black tea.
When I get back to bed he’s rolled over to face the wall, taking the duvet with him. Carefully I climb back onto my side and hope the heating comes on soon.
I wake with a start and look at the bedside clock, six. His alarm will go off in half an hour and he’ll want his tea. I ease myself up and creep downstairs. I pull my coat on over my pyjamas and push my bare feet into shoes. I take the five-pound note from behind the hall mirror and shove it in my pocket. With practiced skill I silently open the front door and hurry to the corner shop. I’ve got the milk got back home and got back into bed before the alarm goes off. When it does he roll out of bed with eyes still half closed, and his feet take him to the bathroom without his knowledge. While he’s in there I go and make breakfast.
‘I’ll be late tonight.’ He says, spraying toast crumbs across the table.
‘Oh that’s a shame.’ I turn away so he can’t see the smile that has escaped.
‘Yeah well, can’t be helped.’ He doesn’t look up. I wonder what this one’s called.
‘Will you want dinner?’
‘I’m still eating my bloody breakfast woman. Christ.’
‘I was just wondering if you’ll be home for dinner that’s all.’
‘For fuck sake stop nagging will you. I don’t know what time I’ll be home. For God’s sake you’re not my fucking mother, I don’t have to get your permission for every little thing.’ He raises his hand and I flinch before I can stop myself. He burst out laughing. I relax a little and start collecting the breakfast things. When the blow comes I’m not expecting it and I stagger and have to grab hold of a chair to steady myself. The laugh goes up a gear and he brings his face right up close to mine. I can smell the stale beer from last night. I straighten myself and pick up the knife I’d dropped. I carry everything over to the sink and start washing up. I keep my back to him so he can’t see the tears. I hear him go out into the hall, then the door slams. I slump against the sink and put my hand up to my face. He used to be careful and make sure it never showed. I didn’t need to go and look, I knew what I’d see.
I plunge my hands back in the hot water and carry on with the dishes.
I feel his arms circling around my waist, his firm body pressed against my back and I lean into him. As I wash mugs and plates I feel his lips start to caress my neck and his hands slide up to my breasts. I gasp and grip the edge of the sink. I close my eyes and give myself over to him. It was more real than it had ever been before and I let it take me, let him take me.
It’s past eight and he’s still not home. I made dinner anyway, salad, and put his in the fridge. I do the ironing, tidy round, take the rubbish out. Eventually I make a cup of tea and put the telly on. Just as I sit down he burst through the door.
‘Sitting on your fat arse again I see.’ He slurs and leers at me.
‘No, no I was just…’
‘Being a lazy cow as usual, I can see that.’ He staggers through to the kitchen and sits down at the table.
‘Well?’ he looks up at me as I follow him in. I get the plate from the fridge and unwrap the cling film.
‘What the fuck’s this?’ He’s staring at his plate.
‘Salad. I wasn’t sure what time you’d be in so I thought I’d do something that wouldn’t spoil.’ I can hear my voice getting higher and tighter and I can feel the tea towel being throttled in my hand.
‘Salad!? Christ woman I’ve been working like a dog all day and you give me fucking salad.’ He picks the plate up and hurls it across the kitchen at me. I duck just in time and it crashes against the wall, tomato sliding down onto the floor. I pick up the dishcloth and go over to the mess.
‘Leave it!’ He yells. ‘Leave it and get me something proper to eat.’
I scuttle to the freezer and thank God today was giro day. I pull out a steak pie that will microwave, and a bag of chips. He watches me, hand twitching. When he sees what I’ve got he frowns and sits back down to read the paper. While the food cooks I make him more tea, but he waves it away and points to the fridge for beer. Reluctantly I pull one out for him. He knows I get the money today, he knows there’ll be beer in the fridge, and I know that by the time he’s finished eating it’ll be gone.
And I’m right. He goes to the fridge and mutters when he realises there’s no more.
‘Is that all I’m worth eh? One lousy four pack?’ He turns to glare at me.
‘It’s all I could afford.’ I say meekly.
‘You could get more if you didn’t waste so much money on yourself.’
‘I didn’t, I don’t…’ And I don’t. I can’t remember the last time I bought something for myself.
‘Crap. Where else does it all go?’
‘Food, electric, the phone….’ I know it’s no use, I don’t know why I still try to defend myself.
‘Bollocks. That’s bollocks. With what you get and what I give you there should be plenty.’ I watch him clench and unclench his fists.
‘I’m sorry.’
‘Oh you will be.’

I’m back in my hotel room. I’ve no idea what the time is or how long I’ve been here. I can hear soft breathing beside me and I turn over. There he is, lying beside me. He’s on his front with his head turned towards me. The sheet has slipped and is just covering his buttocks. I stare at his naked back, burn the image on my memory. I want to touch him; I want to cover his bare skin in kisses. But that would wake him. I realise that I’m naked too and I smile as I remember.
After he told me how beautiful I was he gently unzipped my dress. I gave a small shrug and it fell to the ground. I hear him catch his breath and he started pulling at his shirt, I went and helped him. In moments we were both naked, facing each other. I never found naked men very attractive, not full frontal like that. But he was fabulous, I mean really fabulous. My eyes ran over every inch of him, locking it all away for later, he was doing the same. But it didn’t last; we couldn’t stand there like that for long. We lunged at each other and soon we were smothering each other in fat, wet kisses. I wasn’t nervous anymore; I didn’t care about anything but this one moment.
By the time we hit the bed we were breathless and sweating and giggling like children. When was the last time I laughed? He pulled me to him and we clung together to steady ourselves. Calmer now he rolled me over onto my back and rolled himself on to me. I felt him slip his knee between my legs, but I didn’t need the encouragement. I wrapped my legs around his waist and arched my back to bring him in. I held my breath to stop the cry I knew was coming. The room pitched and rolled around us and at one point I was sure we were floating. When it came I felt it from my toes to my hair roots, wave after wave shacking through me. My eyes snapped open and I was sure I had died of it. It was only when I heard, and then felt him following me that I knew I hadn’t.
And now we are lying here in the soft light of the early morning and I’m watching him sleep. I can hear something outside, out through the open window. It reminds me that there are other people in this world, but I don’t care. Whatever it is they might be doing it has nothing to do with me anymore. I prop myself up on my elbow and watch him sleeping. Gently I run my finger down his spine and he twitches. The noise comes again, someone shouting. Briefly I look across at the window, but there’s nothing there. I turn my eyes back to him. I want him to wake; I want him to make love to me again. But I also want him to stay like that so that I can look at him forever.
‘Oi! Hey!’
I can feel something slipping, moving away. He’s getting fuzzy and out of focus.
‘Bloody hell! Oi!’
A heaviness comes over me, a darkness. He’s fading, leaving me. No, I’m leaving him. I can feel my feet on the cold kitchen floor and the cold water. I can feel a pain in my shoulders and all I can see now is the darkness of my closed eyes. A sudden pain in my shin snaps my eyes open and I gaze at my kitchen. I’m up to my elbows in cold washing up water and my feet have gone to sleep.
‘I’m talking to you.’ He kicks me again. ‘What the bloody hell’s going on?’
I look round at him blankly. I was washing up. We’d had breakfast, he’d hit me again, gone to work and I was doing the washing up. What was he doing back so soon?
‘I’m washing the breakfast things. I thought you’d gone to work?’
‘That was nine hours ago you stupid bitch. Have you been stood there all day? Jesus Christ! What about dinner?’
I look round in confusion. He’s right though, the clock says six and it’s getting dark out. When I look down my hands are deeply wrinkled and bloodless. I pull them out of the water and dry them quickly. I don’t say anything. I dash around the kitchen doing all the things it usually takes me all morning to do. He’s watching me closely but I’m moving to quickly. In half an hour he’s sitting down to sausage and mash, the ironings done and I’ve mopped the floor. While he eats I fleet around the rest of the house, and by the time he’s eaten it’s all done. I’ve lost a whole day, I’ve never managed that before. A few minutes, maybe as long as an hour, but a whole day!
He’s wary when I come back into the kitchen. I see him watching me out of the corner of his eye. I gather up his dirty dishes and fill the sink again with hot water. While I wash up he circles round me.
‘So what was that about?’
‘What’s that?’
‘You’re not telling me that’s normal.’
‘It’s easy to loose track of time sometimes.’ I give a small laugh.
He frowns and shakes his head. ‘I’m going out. You better be acting normal when I get back.’ He empties my purse and leaves.

I hear the back door bang and look at the bedside clock, it’s gone midnight. He’s drunk again. I hear him stumble up the stairs and curse. He leaves the bathroom door open and I can hear him. He flings the bedroom door open and I know what’s coming. I keep still and slow my breathing. He pulls my shoulder and rolls me onto my back. I keep my eyes closed.
‘Wake up.’ He slaps my face and I slowly open my eyes, trying to look like I’ve just woken up.
‘Don’t pretend you’re asleep again.’ He’s standing there in his grey underpants and socks. When he sees my eyes are open he tugs his pants down and makes for the bed. I lay still and wait. He leans over me and pushes my pyjama top up. He takes a breast roughly in each hand and squeezes. He’s making a gurgling sound in the back of his throat as he kneads me like dough. When he’s had enough of this he starts yanking at my pyjama bottoms until he’s got one leg off, that’ll do. He grabs my knees and pushes them apart. As he climbs up I close my eyes and turn my face to the wall.
‘Fucking look at me while I’m screwing you!’ And he slaps my face again. I turn back and fix my eyes somewhere near his ear. He thumps and bumps, and huffs and puffs, and then rolls off with a satisfied sigh. He flops off the bed and fumbles back into his pants, then he goes for another loud pee with background farting. While he’s gone I straiten myself up and pull the covers back over me. I see him come back in scratching and stretching. He plonks himself back on the bed and is asleep within seconds. Finally I close my eyes and roll over to face the wall.

When I look across he’s still asleep, the sheet has slipped a bit further and he’s almost naked. I bite my lip and resist the urge to run my hands all over him. I should let him sleep, after last night he needs it. I should be asleep myself, but I don’t care if I never sleep again. I tuck my hands under my pillow and content myself with watching and waiting.
Eventually his eyes start to open. He shifts slightly and looks right into my eyes, a huge beaming smile spreads across his face.
‘Good morning.’ I say.
‘It is now.’ He rolls towards me and plants a kiss on my forehead. I put my hand up and stroke his cheek. He grabs my hand and kisses my palm, oh God it’s like fireworks going off everywhere. I try and keep myself under control, but I can see the smile on his face and I know he’s teasing me. Before I can take another breath his hands are over my hips and ohh!
By lunchtime we’re exhausted and famished, reluctantly we get showered and dressed and go in search of lunch. Walking down the street I can see heads turning and people whispering as they recognise him. A few pluck up the courage to approach and ask for autographs and photos. I step aside and watch. I was like that once, dreaming and wishing. He turns back to me and takes my hand. The girls watch and I can feel their jealous eyes burning into me as we carry on down the street.
We find somewhere quiet and spend the afternoon eating and chatting. I tell him things I never thought I would tell anyone, and he listens. I find out thing about him you never read in the magazines. Together we find each other, and ourselves.
Days pass like this. I know the time is coming when he will have to go off again on tour. The holiday between finishing the last album and going on the promotional tour is ending. And I must think about what that will mean for me. Up to now we have avoided talking about the future, but it’s looming and needs to be faced.
‘I’ve been thinking.’ He says one golden afternoon. We’re sitting under a tree in Hyde Park; he’s laying with his head in my lap looking up at me. I stroke his hair and try to concentrate on what he’s saying.
‘I’ve got to go back next week and get things ready for the tour.’
‘I know.’ I sigh. ‘I’ve been trying not to think about it.’
‘Well I have been thinking about it.’ He sits up and faces me. ‘I want you to come with me. I want you to come on the tour with me. I can’t leave you here.’
I can feel the tears pricking at the backs of my eyes. He takes hold of my hand and grips it hard.
‘I love you.’ He says at last. And that’s it. The tears are streaming and I can’t speak I’m so happy; I never thought I could be this happy. All I can do is nod, but it’s enough. He kisses me and kisses me and I never, ever want him to stop.

Dean knew Ally wasn’t asleep. She’d been like that when he got up. To begin with he had been cross because he wanted his tea and his breakfast. He’d shaken her and shouted at her, he’d slapped her face a couple of times, but still she stayed there. When he got home that evening she was still there, it didn’t look like she’d moved at all. He tried again, this time he left his handprint on her cheek. Still she lay there with her face to the wall. He sat on the end of the bed and watched her for a while. Every now and then her hands would make small movements and her lips would move as if she were talking to someone. Sometimes her mouth would open and her breath would come faster, her face would flush. He banged around all evening trying to make as much noise as possible, until the neighbours started banging on the walls. Still she stayed there.
Days past. Dean moved out into the spare room, it was starting to freak him out. She hadn’t moved at all. And then there was the smell. Her mind may be somewhere else but her body was still in the here and now, and functioning. The sheets were beyond rescue and he was starting to worry. Nothing he tried worked. On the fifth day he called the doctor.
‘How long has she been like this?’ The doctor asked.
‘Five or six days.’
‘And you only just thought to call me?’ The doctor shot Dean a look that shrank him to half his size. Dean just nodded. The doctor sighed and called an ambulance.

‘We can find nothing wrong Mr Caby. Your wife is physically in good health. We ran a number of tests and Mrs Caby is not in a coma, in fact she seems to be awake. We have never come across anything like this before. There is really nothing more we can do for her here and so we are going to let her come home. We will arrange for a counsellor to come in and talk to her, try and get through to her. Something very traumatic must have happened to her to put her in this state, any idea what that might be?’ The doctor looked at Dean hard. Dean looked away and shook his head.
The next day Ally was brought home and settled in bed. A nurse came and showed Dean how to turn her and dress her bedsores. A therapist came once a week and sat on the edge of the bed softly talking to her, Dean watched from the door.
‘She moved her eyes today, they flickered slightly. That should be a good sign.’ The therapist said brightly, Dean nodded.
He made sure her feeding tube was set up properly and the drip was secure before he slipped out to the pub. He couldn’t be too long; she would need turning again in an hour. He took half a pint into the corner and watched the lads playing darts. They called him to join them, but he shook his head.
‘Poor bugger’ he heard one of them say, ‘wife’s bedridden you know, gone funny in the head they say.’
Dean pretended he hadn’t heard and left.

It’s lovely here, I’d never been out of the country before and now I’ve been to more places than I can remember. I liked Australia, but it smelled funny. America was nice, but loud, lots of bright lights as noise. No, if I had to choose a favourite stop so far it would be here, in Norway. It’s quiet and warm and safe feeling. And he’s happier than he’s been all tour, well he’s home of course. He’s taking me to all his childhood haunts, all those places that were special to him. When we get back to England I’ll do the same. It’s tiring though, all this travelling. But it’s worth it. He loves me, he tells me every day. And I’m so happy, I’ve never been so happy.

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Still raining!

Well it's still raining! Is this global warming then? I notice they seem to have stopped calling it that and now say 'climate change' instead. Ok so we get a lot of rain in Cornwall, especially in the north here, but this is getting silly now.

I'm going to try and post some photos over the next few days. I always think it's nice if you can see who it is your reading about. Not that I allow photos of myself to see the light of day very often. I'm one of those people who dosen't photograph well. But Jamie (our little boy) is angelic in photos.

People say it must be hard having a special needs child. To be honest I have nothing to compare it with so to me it's the norm. Jamie is an only child and so all his little odd ways are just the way it is. But I do wish he would talk. Of everything I think that's the thing that bothers me most. I long for the day when he says mummy. They tell us not to expect proper speech until he's seven or eight. I know it will come, there is no reason to think otherwise. He has speech theropey and they tell us that he has the ability, makes all the right sounds for speech. So it's a waiting game.

So what is Sotos syndrome? Well I wish someone would tell me! It's quite a rare condition that currently affects about 300 children in this country. It's a groth and development problem. Basically Jamie is about two years behind with almost everything, about three years behind with his speech. But he's ahead with groth, especially his head, as you'll see if I can manage to post a photo. And he's ahead with some things like memory and recognition, we're pretty sure he can read.

If there's anyone out there with any experience of Sotos I would love to hear from you.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Welcome to sunny Cornwall!

Hello to whoever might be reading this. Welcome to the first blog from a not so sunny Cornwall. I think it might just rain forever. Not that it would matter if it did, it would still be about the best place to live I can think of.

So a bit about me and what you'll find here. My name is Claire and I live in North Cornwall with my husband and little boy. We moved here nearly fiveteen years ago to escape our old lives. Of course everyone seems to be doing it these days, but we did it before it became so fashionable. Eight years ago we finally got married and four years ago Jamie was born. He had problems from the start and was seen by this doctor and then that doctor. Finally he was diognosed with hydrochephilus and later with Sotos syndrome. Sotos is quite rare and we still don't know everything about it. Not that it makes a difference, he's a joy.

I want to use this blog as a cross between a diary and a place to try out some creative writing. I started writing years ago but it's got more serious recently. I have written a novel which is currently out there floating around agents and getting rejected. Still it's early days so fingers crossed. Topics may vary depending on what's going on. I suffer from depression and if I'm having an episode things might get a bit dark. I suppose I should have started this in the new year when the builders moved in and we moved out. Chaos is not the word. A five bedroom three hundred year old farmhouse in need of a new roof is not the best place to be.

The timing could not have been better really. In this weather we wouldn't have dared go out in case the buckets overflowed. I know how melodramatic that sounds but it's quite true. And it's just started raining again, for a change, In fact I'm not sure it's stopped. Ho hum.

So I think that will do as a brief introduction. Next time I might try and inport some of my writing.

Bye for now.