Past

8th March 2017…

I’ve just been re-visiting some of my old blog posts… because, well, why not?!

I came across a post I made this time last year, on this exact date, and I feel like I need to respond to myself.

The beginning of last year/the end of 2016 was an incredibly tough time for me. Probably the toughest time of my life, in a way, and for certain reasons I am not permitted to discuss why.

That’s okay.

I’ve come to peace with a lot of it now.

I also refuse to delete/remove the blog posts from that time.

I was hurt and depressed and struggling.

My writing was my outlet.

It still is, but I am no longer hurt and depressed and struggling.

So here are some excerpts from my post (a letter to my baby who we were struggling to conceive) this time last year, and my responses to past me:

Dear Baby Mad,

You don’t exist, and perhaps you never will. You do now, at least in my tummy, and I cannot wait to meet you.

You don’t really have a name either, but in my head I call you lots of names. Freddy John Maddocks, I repeat your name over and over again on a daily basis. I hope it suits you! I hope when you arrive we don’t change our minds after meeting you!

I’d love to give you a middle name, either Joyce, after my beautiful Nan, or Frederick, after my wonderful Grandad. Surely it’s going to be obvious to you, little boy, that Freddy is a homage to my wonderful Grandad?! He was an amazing man, and I’m so privileged I get to name my miracle boy after the man who shaped my life the most.

I imagine what you’d look like. I think you already look like your Daddy! Everybody thinks I’m crazy, because, really, how much can you tell from a scan picture?! But you do look like your Daddy! Especially from the side! You have his nose and his gorgeous lips! Much better than your Mummy’s nose and lips! I hope you have your Daddy’s eyelashes too, because they’re absolutely stunning! One thing is for certain, Freddy, I know you’re going to be the most gorgeous baby ever!

I imagine my Dad, who would be your Grandad, holding you, the proudest he’s ever been. He can’t wait, Freddy, he really can’t! He’s retired now. He’s going to look after you when Mummy is back at work. He’s so excited to be your Grandad and wants to buy you a special hat so you can build models in his shed with him! He was there, with your Nanny, when we found out you were a boy! Everybody is so excited to meet you and everybody loves you so so much.

I imagine bathing you and dressing you and snuggling you silly, even when you wake me up at all hours in the night and I think I can’t take much more of your incessant wailing for food (because, let’s face it baby mad, you’re a product of me and your Dad, and our favourite thing is to eat!) Everyday I come closer and closer to this reality and I cannot believe how lucky I am. I don’t care about how exhausted I’m going to be, because you’re going to be here finally!

I imagine all of the adventures we’ll have, and that special Mummy time nobody else will get because I’ll be on maternity leave and it’ll just be me and you. I have so many plans already! And you’re going to be around others babies too! Some of Mummy’s friends are having babies and we can go on days out with them! You’ll be in your gorgeous pram rocking your cool outfits that Daddy has chosen for you and Mummy will look rough but she won’t mind! Up until you’re nearly one years old, we will be together and have so many adventures! I can’t wait!

Everything I’ve done, I’ve done for you.

I already know that I love you.

Just like I always knew that I’d love your Daddy when I eventually met him.

If it’s even at all possible, I love you even more than your Daddy, because I know you would be a perfect blend of both of us. I still feel this way, Freddy, and now I know every single thing your Daddy and I went through; all of the pain, the heartache, the suffering, the sacrifices to get to this point, it was all for a reason. That reason is you my little boy, and I will never ever take you for granted.

 

So many times you have saved my life, when you aren’t a life yourself. I see it clearer now than ever before, I had to save myself for you to exist. I had to change my life. I had to get rid of every ounce of negativity and all of the awful things that were holding me back for you to exist. 

 

Why can’t I grow you and keep you safe until you’re ready to come into our little world? I’m doing it, my gorgeous boy! I am growing you. Against all odds, with my pathetic body that’s always failed me, I’m growing you. I’m petrified of doing something wrong and I’m petrified of losing you still. But with every kick, punch, elbow, wriggle and those hilariously cute hiccups you get when I drink cold water too fast or eat a bit too much sugar, I know you’re one step closer to being big enough to be born and here in my arms. You’re a true miracle, and I know you’ll get bored with me telling you that every single day of your life, but I’m never going to stop. Just like I’m never going to stop telling you how much I love you.

Why can’t you be asleep in your cot in your bedroom, instead of it being a room full of pointless junk your mummy bought to try to make herself feel better? You should have seen it, little man! Maybe one day you will! I took lots of ‘before’ pictures of the state of your room! It doesn’t look like that anymore. It’s ready to be decorated in the colour scheme we’ve picked out for you (grey and blue with cloud accessories!) It’s clear of all of my junk. I sold most of my junk! I parted with 8 huge bin bags of clothes. I sold most of the things I’d wasted money on and I’ve used the money to buy the things you need. I’m proud of myself. You will never have to suffer or go without, because I will always ALWAYS make sure you have absolutely everything you need. Of course your room will be ready for when you arrive, but you’ll be in with Mummy and Daddy for a while first. I can’t wait!

Why can’t you distract me from writing this now because you’re giggling or whinging or snoring or crying because you need food or your nappy changing? One day, one day very soon, you will be, and Mama won’t be blogging anymore because she won’t have the time!

 

 

I’m so glad I stuck things out and got myself back on track rather than just giving up.

This time last year I felt as though I’d lost all hope and there was no coming back.

But I stayed strong, I got help and I fixed myself.

Without anti-depressants (not that I’m criticising anybody who takes them, it was just a personal goal of mine to not go back on them after coming off them in September 2016).

Without anyone else ‘fixing’ things for me.

Without the people who dragged me down.

I got rid of the negativity and I let positivity into my life.

I feel like a warrior now!

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pregnancy

Natural birth vs C-Section

So when I first found out I was pregnant, in amongst the excitement (and anxiety, obviously! That doesn’t change even though you’ve been waiting a lifetime for one of those little blue tests to read ‘pregnant’!) one of my immediate thoughts was “I’m not going to be able to give birth naturally.”

Now before anyone jumps on that… it’s not because I was (or am) being a wuss! I thought my medical condition would hinder my chances of giving birth naturally.

I know, I know, that sounds stupid, particularly now it’s written down, and particularly because I somehow, against all odds, managed to conceive naturally.

However, I assumed with the state of my insides (and the scars on the outside) that my body would simply not allow me to give birth naturally.

A few appointments with doctors/midwives and a discussion (albeit via email) with my normal gyane consultant seemed to confirm this too.

Therefore, the plan had always been, planned c-section at 39 weeks pregnant.

I’ve spent most of my pregnancy working on this assumption and attempting to, at least mentally, prepare myself for major surgery.

But, after meeting with a new consultant midwife a few weeks ago, the possibility of a natural birth opened up (pardon the pun!)

Now I’m at a total crossroads and have no idea what to do.

I am researching like crazy; watching videos on YouTube about hypnobirthing, ordering books left right and centre from Amazon, downloading apps, speaking to everybody I know who has had babies and asking them about their childbirth experiences! I’m still completely undecided.

I am 29 weeks pregnant today.

I have an appointment with the consultant midwife a week on Monday and I need to be one step closer to a decision by then.

HELP!!!

endometriosis, Fertility

So, it’s been a while…

I don’t really know where to start – which is incredibly unusual for me!

With endometriosis seemingly popping up in the media more and more often, I felt compelled to return here. It’s not that I’ve actively avoided blogging… far from it! I have been incredibly busy since I last blogged (nearly a year ago!!) But I’ve also been busy doing exactly what I complained about not being able to do previously… living a quiet life!

For a little while, I was also a little frightened and hesitant to post on here. But, yesterday, I read an amazing post on Instagram (I only joined just over a year ago, but I’m literally OBSESSED! Is anyone else?!) by an amazing mummy to a rainbow baby who discussed the whole notion of ‘tempting fate’ and, well, I decided to take the plunge.

So here it is…

Here he is…

image1

Our beautiful little miracle.

From the little tiny dot he was at 8 weeks gestation, when I was suffering from hyperemesis (horrendous, and other mothers who have suffered with this, I totally empathise!) and severe anxiety over the possibility of losing him (obviously we didn’t know he was a ‘him’ at that point!) to him doing acrobatics with his little leg over his head at 22 weeks and 1 day (that was nearly a month ago!)

I wish we could have more scans to see what he looks like now – but luckily my doctors/midwives/consultants etc haven’t deemed that necessary at the moment, which means he’s as healthy as can be and making expected progress right now!

I’m currently 26 weeks and 2 days pregnant.

There’s a statement I never ever thought I’d be able to make! Not long now until I’m in the third trimester.

I feel so incredibly lucky and blessed that this little miracle appeared seemingly out of nowhere!

After all of the tracking, ovulation sticks, constant visits to my consultant, surgery and, finally, a referral to a fertility specialist to start IVF… he spontaneously appeared as a result of my husband’s birthday weekend celebrations! The one time I hadn’t tracked, hadn’t obsessed, hadn’t stressed myself out, he was created!

I am beyond excited to meet him. It’s been a really rough pregnancy so far, I won’t lie – it’s been far from easy. There have been times where I’ve felt so down and depressed due to being so ill and/or in so much pain that I’ve wondered if it was right to put my body through it. But I’m doing it, and I will continue to go through this to make sure this little boy is born as healthy and chubby as possible!

So this post is for you, Freddy John Maddocks, the little wriggly baby currently growing in my tummy and using my bladder as a bouncy castle in the middle of the night. I can finally, finally tell you, the real you, how much I love you, and how I cannot wait to be your Mummy.

Fertility, Past

Just to make things clear…

Hi world.

Just so we’re clear and things aren’t misunderstood, here’s a little bit about me.

I’m a 25 year old trapped in a mind (and body) that is much much older and definitely a lot more mature.

For the best part of ten years, all I’ve wanted is to fall in love, get married, and have a family.

For the past nearly fifteen years, all I’ve wanted to do is teach. Just teach. Inspire young minds and show them that they can be successful and they can make a difference in the world. (Yes, that same world that has fucked me over so many times I’ve lost count.)

I don’t feel my hopes, dreams and ambitions are all that great.

I don’t think it’s such a massive thing to want to be left alone to live the life I so desperately want to live.

Why is it that people always try to destroy this for me?

I don’t want much, nor do I ask for much.

I don’t want to be rich or famous or even massively successful in my field.

I don’t want to be in charge of my own school and take all of the credit for everyone else’s hard work.

I just want to be me.

I want to be ‘Miss’ when I’m at work, and be the best teacher I can possibly be, and I want to be ‘wife’ and ‘mum’ when I’m at home, and, again, be the best wife and mummy I can possibly be.

Is this really too much to ask?

Is this really too much to desire?

Apparently so.

The other day Mr Mad said to me he thinks maybe sometimes people try to destroy my happiness (or, as recent events have clearly shown, destroy my life) because they don’t know me that well. Maybe he’s right, but I feel I’ve had to put up a strong, confident front to get through everything that life has thrown at me so far. I don’t want people to see that I’m incredibly sensitive and vulnerable as I’m scared they’ll take advantage of that. Only, it appears that was a stupid tack to take, as people have tried, and are still trying, to destroy my life regardless.

So this is my message, to the universe, in the hope that someday someone will come along and actually understand and realise that I come in peace.

That I don’t want your job.

That I don’t want your family.

I don’t want your happiness or your success or your things.

I don’t want or need anything of yours and I certainly don’t need to destroy you, who you are and what you have.

All I want is to live in my little house at the bottom of the grove with my wonderful husband, my gorgeous cats and (if I’m very very lucky) two beautiful children.

That is literally all I want.

What I need is a decent job to support that, and that’s what I’ve spent the past ten years trying to achieve.

I hated school.

Hated it.

I never managed to fit in and everybody was horrible to me.

I was beaten up several times, I had lighters held to my head on the bus home, I had food thrown at me, I was spat at, called a ridiculous amount of disgusting and horrible names and was constantly told I would amount to nothing.

Throughout all of that, as an awkward, self-conscious teenager, I tried my best to stay strong.

I tried my best to keep my head down and study and come out with the best exam results I possibly could so I could start on the path to forging my own future.

In the middle of my GCSEs my Grandad, my wonderful, amazing, kind-hearted, perfect Grandad got seriously ill.

I still didn’t miss a day of school.

I still went in and I worked and worked and then I went to the hospital.

Every night.

I sat with my Grandad, while he was in his hospital bed, going over past papers and revising.

A week after I finished my last exam he was gone.

That was it.

He never even got to see me get my GCSE results (which were, as he predicted, fantastic, particularly my A in Maths that I’d struggled to get, and that he’d tutored me for for months upon months).

But I did it.

I still did it.

I stayed strong.

I learnt how to live without one of the most important men in my life.

I carried on.

I went to sixth form.

I studied for my A-Levels.

I applied to, and subsequently was accepted, into my first choice university to study English.

I still carried on.

All because I had my end goal in sight….

This image of a beautiful little family with a man I adored.

Not because I wanted to “be the best”.

Not because I wanted “what she has” or “what he has”.

No, because I just wanted my own little quiet life.

I got a job in the first year of uni so I could afford to save a little money and move out of home for a bit of freedom.

I met the love of my life there – he’s the man I marry in two and a half weeks’ time.

He’s even more than I ever dreamed of and I still count my lucky stars every day that throughout all of the crap that has been thrown at us, we have always managed to get through it together.

Yes, we have had times where we have had ‘breaks’ in our relationship, where neither of us could see another way through other than to be apart.

Yes, on the occasion where we were apart for 6 months we both had relationships with other people.

We’re not perfect, shit happens.

But we’ve never cheated.

We’ve never done anything disgustingly bad to each other, because we both have respect.

Why do so many people lack in that nowadays?

We’ve been back together for 3 years now, and when we get married in February, I know it will be forever. 

We’ve gone through losing two babies now (others may think differently and may believe they weren’t ‘real’ babies, but that’s how I feel and I won’t apologise for mourning the loss of our pregnancies).

We’ve gone through losing my amazing Nan, almost two years ago.

He, Mr Mad, has picked me up from rock bottom more times than I can count.

He’s wonderful and what we have is wonderful.

I don’t need what anybody else has because I have something amazing myself.

I also choose not to go on and on about how wonderful I think my husband-to-be is because I don’t want people to think I am bragging.

THAT IS WHY I HARDLY EVER TALK ABOUT MY RELATIONSHIP.

That’s another thing nobody seems to understand.

Just because I am an otherwise chatty person does not mean I am not private.

Nobody apart from my family and very closest friends know half of the shit I have been through, and there’s a reason for that.

Even now, even when I’m writing such a very deep and personal post, there are things I just won’t ever discuss.

I don’t understand how people have got me so wrong.

All I want, and need, in my life is my husband and my family.

That’s it.

So tell me why would anybody be so cruel as to try to ruin that for me?

What is it that I’ve done to deserve such horrible, vindictive, disgusting things being thrown at me?

I’m such a big champion of honesty and the truth, why aren’t other people?

Why do people believe lies even when it goes against everything else they’ve ever felt and known to be true?

Anyway, I’ve digressed.

I just can’t really believe or understand what is happening to my life right now.

This was supposed to be the happiest year of our lives.

We get married in two and a half weeks.

Instead of being excited and looking forward to it, we’re facing so much uncertainty and horrific times, all because of a few individuals.

We should be looking forward to our future.

We should be taking our steps that bit closer to having our longed-for child.

We should be enjoying our new house and be spending quality time together.

So, world, universe, please understand, I’m Mrs-Mad-to-be and I just want a quiet, simple life.

Nothing more, nothing less.

 

Fertility

All is quiet on the Western (Baby) Front…

I really thought we’d managed this time. I really thought we’d finally managed to make a baby.

I mean, I still won’t be convinced until I have a proper period, which doesn’t seem to have happened yet this month.

I’m a week late.

I was sure I was pregnant.

I’d convinced myself I was.

All yesterday, in particular, I felt awful.

I felt nauseous all day and almost ruined my poor mum’s trip to Harrogate with me. I ended up having to drive us home early but I felt hopeful, because I’d convinced myself I was pregnant, so the sickness and feeling like shit was worth it.

I’ve felt like crap again today, came home and took the 3rd pregnancy test in a week.

Negative.

Again.

I just don’t know how much longer I can take this.

I feel like Mr Mad doesn’t fully understand either.

I’m sure he’d say he’s trying to understand.

But can men really ever understand?

It’s awful being a woman and not being able to do the one thing you are meant to do.

I feel like I’m losing all hope.

I’m really trying to be positive. I’ve adjusted my lifestyle. I’m off all medication, I’m exercising regularly, following a strict, clean and healthy diet and limiting my alcohol intake.

I’m taking folic acid, vitamin c, vitamin d.

I’m getting at least 8 hours sleep a night and I’m trying to minimise stress in my life.

I’m following every bit of advice I possibly can…. so WHY AM I NOT PREGNANT?!!!!

This happens by accident for so many people and yet it doesn’t seem to be happening for me on purpose.

I don’t feel like blogging anymore as I feel like I’m just being a massive whinger and there’s no need for people to have to read it and deal with it!

So yeah… in case any of you were wondering where I’d been and what’s been happening…. here’s the update in a nutshell…

I’m still not pregnant!

Fertility

It’s not because you’re not happy for them… it’s because you’re sad for you…

Yesterday I spent some lovely quality time with my mum. It was great to see her properly and get the chance to have a proper chat without me having a ‘fuzzy’ head (either from prescription painkillers or recovering from horrific surgery).

We trawled through the rails of a new vintage shop (that’s a bit oxymoronic!) and had high tea at a Victorian tea rooms near my mum’s house.

It was wonderful.

However, the conversation naturally fell to babies.

As always.

As it will probably continue to be for a long time to come.

I joked to my mum, “If one more person I know announces they’re pregnant I’m going to go crazy!”

Obviously that’s not the case, but I am feeling incredibly down whenever somebody announces their pregnancy. I know I shouldn’t, and I know it’s horrible to be unhappy when somebody else is happy. But it’s very very difficult. Any of you struggling with infertility and this maternal ache that never leaves you will understand how depressing and lonely this whole thing is.

Last night I reactivated my Facebook account as I’ve felt a little out of touch with the world. It’s been a blessing and simultaneously a curse, being off social media. Going back on to social media has also been both a blessing and a curse. I scrolled down my “top stories” in a bid to catch up on ‘important’ news I had missed in the month I’ve been off the social network. There it was. One pregnancy announcement. Great… how ironic after saying to my mum I would go crazy at one more announcement. I didn’t go crazy. I didn’t express any emotions outwardly. Just another piece of me died inside. I felt selfish for being so pissed off at this person for being pregnant. I felt disgusted at myself for thinking things like “how come she deserves a baby and not me?” “for years she’s said she could take or leave having children and now she’s pregnant.” “she’s 40 and left it until now to decide she wanted a baby and she’s got one straight away.”

Then, when Mr Mad fell asleep last night, I lay in bed crying for an hour until I eventually dropped off into an emotionally induced slumber.

I know, I know, I’m a horrible, awful, mean person.

But I can’t even begin to put into words how heart wrenchingly difficult this whole experience is.

While she’s whinging on her status updates about not being able to fit into size 6 jeans anymore, due to her ever-growing bump, I’m sitting alone in an eerily quiet house wondering what my Sundays would be like if I had a toddler running around.

Somebody who shall remain nameless and faceless often likes to tell me I live a shallow existence (needless to say, this person is not, and will never be a friend). I wonder if she’s ever stopped to think that the reason I have a lot of possessions and a lot of things is because I simply can’t fill my life with children. That I wasn’t fortunate enough to have my baby 3 years ago, because he or she was gone before he or she even really properly existed. That I didn’t get pregnant “by accident” at 19 and spend most of my life travelling the world with my baby, bringing him up and spending quality time that I will never get back. I’ve spent years, by the way, wishing I could get pregnant “by accident”…. none of these things she even considers.

Sometimes  most of the time, I wish people could put themselves in my shoes, and actually feel what it’s like to be me and be going through this hell. Everything I have I would give up for a baby. I’m sure most, if not all, women who are experiencing infertility feel like this. That doesn’t stop us from feeling incredibly lonely and isolated.

It’s even harder when your partner doesn’t fully understand either.

They try, bless them, they really do, but I don’t really think men can ever feel what we feel, because they can’t carry children. They don’t have that innate instinct in them that makes their bodies feel the need to create and carry a child, or to mother a child. Mr Mad tries his best, he really does, and he’s an absolutely wonderful husband (to be!). But quite often he just doesn’t get it. Especially now that I’ve had surgery. He seems to think I am “fixed” – that the surgery was some miracle cure and now we will be able to get pregnant whenever we choose to. So now that’s a major issue too, because he doesn’t want to try anymore. Apparently it’s not the “right time”. Apparently we should start trying “next year after the wedding and our holidays that we’ve booked.” Obviously I can’t force him to try… but when I try to explain I just know that we won’t get pregnant within the next year anyway, he dismisses it and brushes it off. He doesn’t seem to understand how empty I feel, or how painful my need to be a mum really is. I don’t want to wait and prolong things again. I don’t care if I’m pregnant at my wedding. I don’t care if I have to cancel a holiday because I’m due to give birth. None of those things matter to me as much as having a baby… having a family… doing the one thing I have always wanted, above everything else in my life.

I just wish things would get easier, and that people would stop telling me, “it will happen soon, you’re young, you’ve got years yet.”

Like that makes any difference…

others pregnancy

 

Uncategorized

Moving on and letting go…

For reasons that can’t (or, rather, shouldn’t) be discussed on here, just in case, I have had a lot of thinking time the past few days. Furthermore, I’ve had a lot of time to realise sometimes (most of the time, actually) it’s good to move on and let go.

Elsa-Singing-Let-It-Go

I’m going to go off on a bit of a tangent now (what’s new?!) because while I was downloading that image it sparked an amusing image of me at work… I often wear my hair in a side plait for work as I don’t really have all that much time to get ready in the mornings (I’d sooner choose sleep, then going in early to get my printing and photocopying done before the mad rush!). Several times this year my kids (not my kids, rather, the kids I teach, but all teachers call their classes “my kids”… it’s both a blessing and a curse of the job!!) have mentioned I look like Elsa when I wear my hair like that. It’s cute! I like the idea of being both beautiful and deadly at the same time! I often tell them I am embodying Elsa and that if they ‘cross’ me I will freeze them! (Please note, sarcasm only tends to work with older children/teenagers, year 7s in particular get very frightened when you talk about freezing them!!)

Anyway… yes…

My last blog post was very negative, but I won’t apologise, as I was feeling very negative at the time. I was feeling let down and hurt. I needed somewhere to vent and release my emotions and writing has always always provided that outlet for me. Nobody can take that away from me, especially now I have found my little corner of the internet with people who relate to me and understand me (thank you, lovely people, for sticking with me throughout this horrific, emotionally draining journey!!).

I’ve had time to reflect, because I am not back at work until Thursday (hooray, finally! I can have social interaction again!!).

This evening I went through all of the old backups of my old computers (I have a habit of keeping everything, even if it brings back bad memories) and I deleted every single trace of my crazy ex. Several years have passed since I lived with this moronic demon, and I literally have no reason to keep any ties to him whatsoever. The restraining order has lapsed, granted, but I doubt he will ever attempt to come near me again. For some reason (maybe sentiment, who knows?!) I was keeping hold of photos, little mementos, copies of messages/emails etc. This evening I permanently deleted them all. I need to let go of so many things in my past that have been holding me back, and for no good reason either. I am finally in a place in my life where I can say that most things are good. I need to remind myself of that, too. For a start, I have Mr Mad, and he is absolutely wonderful. Yesterday I also realised that I am incredibly lucky to still have my parents. My parents are wonderful. No matter what, they back me up and support me. After losing both my grandparents at a relatively young age (Grandad at 16 and Nan last year at 23) I have a new found appreciation for my parents, as I realise they will not be around forever (although I really really wish they could be!) Take yesterday, for example, I made the 50 minute drive to my parents’ house (also my childhood home) and I spent the day sitting in the garden with my mum, dad and brother, chatting, reminiscing, helping my brother set up his new iPhone (which was a birthday present from me, because he’s still a student and deserved a) bringing into the 21st century and b) a treat because he’s had a rough few years with his health). I spent so long with them in the garden that I didn’t even realise I was getting sunburnt! But I did realise something… no matter what, I will always always have unconditional love from my family, and that isn’t something to ever take for granted. I have wonderful parents and a wonderful brother. They have always supported me, despite the thousands millions of mistakes I have made, and they are always there when I need love and comfort.

This brings me on to my next ‘epiphany’…

This evening, I sat soaking in the bath (with my horrifically sunburnt shoulders well and truly out of the hot water!) and, for the first time ever, thought “What if teaching isn’t actually for me?” Don’t get me wrong, I love my job… well…. I love the in the classroom bit… making children’s lives better, introducing them to a world of literature and language and showing them everything you can do when you have a proper grasp of the English language, showing them that they can succeed, no matter what background they’re from and no matter what challenges they face in life. However, the British education system is gradually being torn apart and ruined. There are so many politics involved in teaching now, I don’t even know where to begin to explain to my international followers (so I won’t even try!!) It’s also a very very intense job. You have to commit at least 60 hours a week to it. Your work doesn’t stop when you get home – it carries on. I am concerned, majorly concerned, in fact, that when I eventually get my little miracle, I won’t be able to spend enough time with them, and they will grow up so quickly and I will miss out on so much. I don’t want that. I want to be a mummy. I want to be there. I want to witness all of the important moments. I want to pick them up from school and ask them about their day. I want to spend evenings with them and have a proper bedtime routine, bathing them and reading them a bed time story, without constantly having “I hope this doesn’t take long as I have a shit load of marking to do and resources to  prepare for tomorrow” in the back of my mind. I want to be. 

I obviously haven’t made a concrete decision yet, as it was literally an hour ago that I opened my mind to the possibility that I could do something else. I always felt like I was born to teach, but what if that isn’t actually the case? What if I am actually meant to do something else, but I’ve never taken the time to explore other options, as I was so hell bent on becoming an educator?

It’s a lot to think about.

But something I do know for certain…

I am determined to be happy.

I am determined to make the most of whatever precious time I have on this earth.

I am determined to get to the end of my life with few regrets, and I hope those regrets are “I wish I’d done xyz” rather than “I wish I hadn’t done xyz.”

As a teenager, I was a geeky, weird, strange goth girl who nobody liked. As a (relatively) young adult, I am still that geeky, weird, strange goth girl who nobody likes… but, y’know what, I’m actually beginning to be okay with that. I like who I am, I am happy with who I am, and it’s people’s quirks that make them individuals and make them interesting. I will never be a sheep, and I will probably never fit in. But that’s okay.

I have decided, particularly as a middle finger to those who have tried to bring me down, both recently and in my past, that my mantra for life is going to be this…

don't let anyone dull your sparkle

I sparkle in my own way. And I like it. If you don’t like it, that’s your problem.