I’ll never be rid of my ex

Travelling with 3 under twos

You may remember we’re off to Lake Garda in June for 17 days. We specifically chose that area to be close to Megan and Gracey and be able to spend more time with them and I’m really looking forward to it.

Megan decided to have Gracey’s christening whilst we are there to avoid us all having to come over once again or worse, miss out on the occasion. She phoned me a month ago and asked me on the phone if I would be ok in the same room as her dad as she wanted to avoid any conflict in front of her guests.

Understandable and I pointed out that I was perfectly fine being in the same room as him but that it was her father who had the problem. He was the one that needed to be asked. She knew this but admitted that it was so difficult speaking to her father without him going off on one that she wanted to try first with me. I am the easier option.

I assured her I would be fine, I reminded her that I am perfectly happy with Paul and that I had absolutely no need to speak or see her dad. I would stay out of his way but was also quite happy to talk to him should the occasion rise. I’d make sure her day was memorable for all the right reasons.

Paul wasn’t so happy at giving up a ‘beach’ day for a ‘church thing’ but would drag himself along for the love of Megan who he gets on very well with.

On her recent trip the Christening was brought up, the arrangements, the reception, could I buy Gracey her christening gown and so on. It turns out that dad has had a turn around since (That’s a surprise! – not. He’ll probably have another ten changes of mind between now and then) and when Megan said I would be there with Paul and the girls as discussed, he replied that in that case he wouldn’t be at the reception, which is being held in his hotel.

Can I say the word ‘arsehole’ here without offending anyone?

I could say a lot more but I won’t, I will contain myself as this is my ex at his very selfish best.

I agreed with Megan that to make sure her day was special we would go to the church service and then clear off so dad wouldn’t be offended with my presence. (Idiot)

The next day after a lot of thought I approached Megan again and asked, was it worth us coming all that way at all? I mean the service with twins will be hard work, we’ll probably be outside more than inside and seeing as her dad was so adamant at not seeing me, we wouldn’t be missed. Maybe the rest of the family feel the same way too?

Her response was tears. She wants us there and in the photos so when Gracey looks back she knows we made our contribution. She realises her dad is totally out of order but no one can speak to the man because if someone did he would let all hell loose on that person and turn it round so he was the victim.

Little does this man know that his emotional blackmail over the years has indelibly signed our two children so deeply they are and always will be traumatised and he is too bloody minded and egotistical to ever question himself.

I couldn’t give a monkeys’ if it’s me he wants to hurt. Go ahead. Sticks and stones. But by constantly hurting my children he makes me seethe with anger. Something I thought was long gone.

The sad outcome of this is that I will always have this wretched man in my life as we are both important figures to our children. They love us both equally regardless of who is ‘right’ and who is ‘wrong’.

It’s an even harder task than the one David Cameron has on his hands I’m afraid and I’m not sure we’ll ever get there but where there’s a will there’s a way.

The Death Penalty. Could you?

I was pleased when watching the news I heard the failed suicide bomber from the Mumbai bombing case was being sentenced to death and my reaction shocked me. I heard myself say ‘Good’ but Death is so final, is it right to wish someone dead?

The man in question had caused many deaths and untold misery for the families connected to the victims of his dirty deed that yes, he must be punished…but death? and why was it making me happy and satisfied that justice had been done?

Yesterday I read that the devil brothers had lost a challenge against their sentences and I was happy I congratulated the judge for having good sense at long last.

I can hear myself say ‘ They should be locked up and the key thrown away’ and again, I’m wondering where this reaction comes from? I know I was horrified and incredulous reading the torture they had carried out on those poor lads whose own lives are changed forever, sentenced if you like to the misery of haunting memories. The devil brothers’ actions saddened me to think there can be such nasty, evil children amongst us.

Do you remember a few weeks back a young lad who had stabbed a burglar entering his house, then dragged through the courts for a year, his whole life on the line for having protected his family? He was let off any jail sentence as it was deemed self-defense. Well I was happy for him. I thought he didn’t deserve to be punished for protecting his family and home

I think what bothers me more than anything right now is we actually have to put up with everyone’s human rights and I think it’s all gone a bit too far.

Essentially human rights were set up to safeguard people and I agree with that but it seems these very rights are being turned against us and used for a means of gaining money ie compensation. Paid out by us the taxpayers.

How on earth did we get into this mess? and more importantly how are we going to get out of it?

Going back to the Mumbai suicide bomber, well he wanted to die anyway, so a death penalty would probably do him a favour , maybe in his case it would be better to let him live and be ridiculed for eternity. Maybe that would be a more fitting punishment?

As for the Devil brothers I don’t think they will ever be ‘cured’ of their dreadful toxic life. I don’t believe they can become ‘normal’ people and live in society without being a danger. Their childhood neglect is too deep. So what’s the answer? Hang them? Put them in jail for the rest of their lives with Playstation and Wii fitness games? I don’t think they’ll ever learn and fully understand what they did was wrong and why by doing that.

Look at Jon Venables, he’s already back inside and God only knows how many near misses there were whilst he enjoyed a new identity safe in the knowledge that he was out and free.

Looking around our Broken Britain, I do think sometimes that maybe the death penalty would be a deterrent. Our jails are at maximum capacity and we can’t send them to Australia anymore, no they’re sending them back here!  (Remember the paedophile a couple of years back? Already spotted in car parks ogling over young boys with their mothers)

What’s the answer in your opinion? Could you sleep at night having sentenced someone to death?


An insight to how men feel

broken heartMy latest house viewer, who incidentally has returned for a second viewing, is a man. He is begrudgingly selling his five bedroom detached house after the collapse of his marriage and the past three years of singledom.

That has got to be tough. Having worked for your dream house, obtained it and then only to have it all taken away.

He has been accompanied each time by his partner for a woman’s feel on the place and she is being very positive about our little pad. They’re not moving in together as they both have teenagers who will probably fly the nest one day, for work, university or who knows? Saving their final move for a few years down the line.

He’s a good-looking bloke who you instantly feel at ease with, he was quite jovial as he walked around the house for the first time, glancing in each room. It made me wonder what on earth had happened to his previous relationship? Why had it gone all wrong?

His concerns are majorly for his children which is very touching as although they will continue to live with their mother the 16 year old son will spend every other week with him and their daughter Hannah will visit every other weekend. He wanted to make sure the rooms would be big enough for them to be comfortable.

His budget has obviously been greatly reduced as he’s had to halve any proceeds from the sale of his property with his wife but as any bargain hunter he’s looking for the max.

Our third bedroom is a box room, you can get a single bed and a bedside table/tall cabinet by the side but not much else. Ample for a weekend stay and can be done up nicely to make it even more inviting but Leigh was worried as his daughter’s current room is 17 foot.

I mentioned the fact that Hannah would have a bigger room at her mum’s and the important thing was to spend time with him.

‘Don’t talk about her mum’ he replied with a gutted look in his eye.

Three years down the line and still choking on hearing her name mentioned is sad. I felt sorry for him but I shut my mouth before I stuck my foot in it any further and left his partner to carry on the convincing. I know that hurt and it takes time to heal.

As although in my case it was the man who cheated and I was devastated that is not always the case and this gentle man has been heart broken too.

Sometimes a hurt woman can proceed in life to class all men as evil. I know it took me a long time and many debates with Paul to believe in him and more than anything else trust him and his word. This was a clear sign to me that it’s not always the man who is the wrongdoer and there are many heartbroken men out there suffering just as much.

I hope he does buy my house. He’s second viewing another before he decides and I also hope he finds the happiness he deserves in the future, all this after two brief meetings.

It’s amazing how much we pick up on someone in the shortest space of time.

My Best Job of all time

The best job I ever had was with the people you can see here in the photo and it has to be said they are the loveliest people to work with.

This job was my lifeline out of Italy and back to the UK. It was the job where everything started to fall into place for me and for my life, at long last, to start going right and it was the job that restored the confidence in me that had been chiseled away over the years in Italy.

I moved from Italy on the 31st August 2004 and first day at work was 3rd August, the following Monday. A turn around that still today defeats all belief. How did I do that?

My role was in the Travel Trade Relations Department. I was to work alongside Diego (not in the photo but on holiday in Thailand at the time!) and it was our job to promote Italy with all of its beautiful destinations to the Travel companies that you bump into everyday with the hope they would put more and more destinations in their brochures for you to choose from. From Thomas Cook to lastminute.com, they all came under our umbrella.

In order to promote Italy to its best, we had to have contacts with the Italians of course and the tourist departments in every region would call us up with ideas to promote their corner of the peninsula. So you see it was our job to connect the two together, the regions would run workshops and invite members from various travel agencies to their homeland. They would organise flights, accommodation and entertainment and in the few days they hosted these new contacts they would show off their towns, resorts, museums and restaurants to the best of their abilities. Of course the best bit was frequently we were asked to go along too, in order to help with the hosting, the translation and the organising.

Have you had the pleasure of The Italian Experience? If you have you’ll agree it’s one you’ll never forget, if you haven’t make sure it’s on your list of ‘Things To Do Before I Die’. I promise you won’t regret it.

An amazingly open, friendly bunch of people, and they adore children making us look so stern sometimes. Their food, their ice cream, their wines, their art. I could go on forever, please go there and see for yourself.

I personally helped out on a trip to Rome another to Venice and my favourite a ski trip to Trentino where I had previously lived for so long. Not to mention all of the events organised in London, around the UK and Ireland.

I left the company as Paul and I wanted children and time was running out for me as 40 had been and gone. After losing a baby at 21 weeks of pregnancy and a succession of two more miscarriages, I opted to find a job closer to home so my body stood a better chance at getting pregnant and holding on to it.

I miss the job which brought the best out in me, I miss the buzz of working so close to Oxford Street with the flagship Topshop store just over the road but most of all I miss my wonderful colleagues. I’d give my right arm to go back tomorrow but this cannot be whilst my girls are so small and maybe wouldn’t be right. Things change, people move on. I could probably never recapture that time again so it remains a favourite memory with the badge of Best Job Ever.

If you have a quick mo, visit their web site which was one of the last projects I was working on before I left. Italian Tourist Board

This post was writen for Josie’s Writing Workshop I chose prompt 2 and am so pleased I have had a chance to remember these wonderful people in my blog. Writing workshopThanks Josie :)

The Wreck of the Hesperus

A phrase I heard over and over whilst growing up. Mum used it to describe unkempt hair, dishevelled clothes and an unruly overall appearance. I got the message, she wasn’t pleased and I’d better do something about it – quick!

I just Wikipediad the wreck and found such a sad story but it does describe perfectly how I feel about my appearance lately. Lost and alone.

As a stay at home mum and one wage packet down, certain treats have taken a bashing since the girls arrived and the money I would spend on myself is one of our ‘savings’.

New clothes are a rarity these days but my passion for looking at them remains the same, the equation equalling a continuing burning desire for dresses, trousers, tops, bottoms, bags, shoes and every other trinket that makes us feel absolutely fabulous. I ‘know’ I don’t need it but that doesn’t make it any easier the ‘going without’. Alternatively I have become an expert at recycling stuff in my wardrobe….

I took a long, hard and critical look at my face only the other day. I have never used much make up at all preferring the ‘au nature’ look keeping make up for special occasions and night’s out when I usually brush my face in powder for a bit of colour, add some mascara and a bit of lippy. Job Done!

Now I see the ‘laughter lines’ around my eyes and creases in my cheeks…is it time to stop smiling and laughing? I use my beauty serum daily and a good day cream but maybe extra action is needed here? I would love to have a full make over with a professional make up artist. Trouble is I wouldn’t have the time for full make up every day. I have never done it and it would become something I begrudged as a time waster. No, I need a quick daily fix that can be applied in nano seconds and look wonderful with.

My hair is in desperate need of a good cut but the fact that I pin it up most days seems to ‘do’ for the moment. Then I look at the perfectly groomed women on TV and presented in magazines and my heart tumbles as I chide myself  ‘You really must do more!’ I need to spend more time on myself but there’s always something more engaging to do, ie My Blog, Facebook, Judith’s Room or British Mummy Bloggers

My hands are atrocious, dry and coarse from house work, a nice winter exzema extending over the thumbs and backs of my hands. I bought a few creams, I even went to the doctor but nothing seems to work. I want a posh manicure. Now!

My body. Oh dear… apart from a full MOT which I wrote about previously I need to lose half a stone, tighten up my twin tummy with abs abs abs and, moisturise my dry skin every single day which only comes to my mind when I’m fully dressed. (Why?) I signed up at the gym. The idea was to go twice a week leaving the girls in the crèche on site but they have fallen ill ever since!!! But I insist on persevering and went yesterday and hoping to go again on Thursday, fingers crossed.

I have wanted a boob job for as long as I can remember boobs being ‘important’ assets but I doubt I’d go under the knife as I’m such a wuss, lucky I’m not aspiring to be a page 3 girl eh?

So that is my current sorry state of affairs but instead of sitting back and wallowing in ‘Poor me’ I’m doing something about it. I started my MOT this very morning and went to the dentist for a check up, the 1st in two years – NO FILLINGS!!! yayyy and I’m booked in for a good clean in a couple of weeks. For the rest of your Brand New Mari…watch this space….

This was written for Josie’s writing workshop #13. I have chosen prompt 1. You may also enjoy Fear of the Unknown written for #12