The Hunger Games

I know I said I wouldn’t blog about politics, but I have to backtrack because it seems everything is political these days.

Yesterday 322 British MPs voted down a motion to provide 1.4 disadvantaged children in England with £15-a-week food vouchers during school holidays until Easter 2021. In other words, elected members of parliament voted against measures that would help alleviate food poverty among children in their own constituencies.

Continue reading

Are you listening?

As a child, I used to love listening to stories about my parents’ youthful adventures, misbehaviours and the like, but my own children act as if my husband and I didn’t have a life before we became parents.

At the beginning of the summer, the 14-year-old exclaimed that when she grows up, she shan’t live a boring life like her parents.

“Sweetheart,” I replied, “our lives weren’t boring until we had children.”

Continue reading

Sweat the Small Stuff

We’re in the middle of a deadly pandemic and my adopted home country is heading towards a disastrous no-deal Brexit, yet I am walking around the house with a smile on my lips and a spring in my step. Have I gone mad?

No, but I’ve discovered that whoever coined the phrase “don’t sweat the small stuff” got it completely backwards. What better way to deal with a big crisis than focusing on the small stuff?

Continue reading

I’d Rather Just Be

I’m a woman of many positive qualities if I say so myself, but even-tempered has never been one of them.

I spent much of my childhood in a state of permanent rage, most of which was directed at my parents, teachers and doctors. My instinctual response to any threat was rarely flight, but fight, which in hindsight, served me rather well, especially when confronted with bullies.

Continue reading

Lockdown Nostalgia

I miss the lockdown. Technically, it’s still in place, although judging by the almost complete absence of social distancing being observed in shops and parks now, it’s as if the virus had gone away. Which it most certainly hasn’t.  Some call it lockdown fatigue, others say it all began to unravel after the prime minister’s chief adviser broke the lockdown rules by driving 30 miles to a beauty spot to test his eyesight on his wife’s birthday. Continue reading

It’s Not Me, It’s Your Prejudice

I was eleven years old when my teacher called me ‘disabled’ in front of the class, during what was intended as a lesson in tolerance and inclusion. I still remember how the teacher’s words burned as if she was branding me with a red-hot iron. The initial wave of shame soon gave way to anger and resentment. Disabled? Me? In what way was I disabled? Continue reading