It’s not the light start and end to the days, the cherry blossom on the trees or the fact that I’m trying to get my feet sandal fit that marks the onset of a new season for me. It’s the itchy eyes, the sneezing and the bulk purchase of the strongest antihistamines that money can buy.
I didn’t even suffer from hay fever well into my twenties; I spent a blissful childhood running through fields, throwing myself into mounds of grass cuttings and picking wild flowers. I’ll be forever grateful for that at least. It was a mild irritation when we lived in Scotland rarely flaring up for more than a few days at a time, but it became debilitating when we moved to the southwest of England. It’s hard to maintain a professional facade when your client starts handing you tissues when your eyes won’t stop running.
It’s easy enough to prevent though, which is just as well or I’d spend my spring and summer time in a barren landscape. I also have trouble with orchids and christmas trees, so whenever I visit my parents I need to bring industrial strength drugs with me.
I wouldn’t change it for the world though. There is no other season that makes me feel as alive as I do in spring – it’s as though I’m awakening from a dark, muted sleep and open my eyes to a sea of colour. We held a ‘yellow’ day in the office last week in support of a local charity and decorated the office with daffodils. Neither we, nor the office, have ever looked brighter or healthier. They call it mellow yellow for a reason.
Post virus and snot-fest OBB (Operation Bikini Bod) is still on track – I’m down another dress size which means that the charity shops are getting an influx of donations, and the credit card is taking a serious hit.
This, of course, makes me very happy indeed. But my work-wear wardrobe is shrinking at an alarming rate. It was already pretty much a capsule wardrobe, and it’s getting more compact and bijoux by the day. I’m so close to my end goal that I could almost strip off and dance around in the itsy bitsy teeny weeny pistol panties bikini that has been my nemesis for a year now.
I’m not body dysmorphic, I did a victory lap around the flat with my t-shirt over my head and arms in the air premier league footballer style when I zipped myself into a fitted UK size 10 shift dress. It was a truly epic moment and has taken me many many cardio miles, pyramids of doom, and body-quivering planking sessions to get this far. The end is nigh – but I still need to shift a few pounds of fat and tone up the peary bits of my pear shaped body.
I look and feel better than I have for years – and I want to keep that up. I’ll soon be moving from my ‘losing’ phase to a maintenance based one. In a way I’ll miss the slow but steady sense of achievement on losing those unwanted inches. I like the way I feel now, I feel healthy. I still have the odd splurge, I don’t deny myself anything major, but I do keep a daily eye on my calorie intake and exercise a minimum of 3 days a week.
I didn’t think that I’d stick with it, it seemed insurmountable in the beginning, but like the hare and the tortoise, slow and steady wins the day.
Last week was one of those which are funnier after the event than living through it. It was a week of misunderstandings, miscommunications and misconceptions.
Cue the post I wanted to publish mid week:
“I’m irrationally angry. I know I am. I can feel the rant but can’t stop it. I want to vent. I need to vent – I need to go Mariah. I need to go diva – epic diva at that.
However, neither my liver nor my credit card can actually take me to the limit – both will fail me before I can calm down. It just isn’t in me though. I’m already bored of my inner dialogue, my soliloquy to divadom. In fact, I’m already over it. Therein lies the problem; I need to hold the anger ahead of a strategic management meeting tomorrow so I can go all red haired Scottish scary – think a short, dimply, spectacle-free Frankie Boyle. Enter stage left an impeccably dressed Irn Bru character assassin.
I get tediously bored trying to hold onto negative thoughts; my subconscious deals with negativity as though it’s a game of Tetris, everything has a place, you just have to put it there. I put my anger away and come out with solutions and lists. It’s my way. Damn that mantra “in with anger out with love”, it wins every sodding time.
I’m annoyed because it’s not one thing that’s set me off, it’s a culmination of 12 months of minor irritations. I only have myself to blame.
There’s only one thing left to do – music on loud (Mariah, Dionne, Shirley) and lists. Lots and lots of lists.”
The next day was almost worse than the one that brought out my inner diva. BUT, and that’s a gigantic BUT in capital letters – I let it all go. I left a meeting mid way through to go and gather my thoughts, my sanity and my temper. I then had another meeting where I could explain my frustrations.
As the week went on it became clear that there were a number of factors that had led to diva-gate. It was the fact that key personnel hadn’t asked the right people the right questions. I was the right person with the right information but no-one had asked me the right questions. With proper hindsight, I could have foreseen the issues ahead of time, this time I didn’t – next time I’ll know how to counter the idiocy before it begins.
Both Mr ShoeThatAlwaysFits and I have been ill with a glandular fever-esque virus for a few days. It sucked. We got snarky, over-dosed on Season 4 of The Good Wife and I slept more than I have so far this year.
I attempted to go to work on Monday – I managed a little over two hours in situ, but with my tolerance levels at an all time low I thought that I should leave before I started on a squeakily terrifying laryngitis riddled tirade of abuse that was bubbling up inside me. I made it home, Mr ShoeThatAlwaysFits saw my sweaty little face and attempted to cheer me up by liberating the shoes I bought in London. They were were hostages for over a week and he wanted some thanks. I think not !
I made it in today, called a few clients, dealt with an alarming amount of emails and boxed up and returned some little parcels of loveliness that weren’t quite right. I’ve come home, tackled the ironing, done the dishes, made some calls, and done some jobs for Mr ShoeThatAlwaysFits for his early start tomorrow. In short, I’ve achieved more in the last 14 hours than I have over the last 5 days.
It’s good to have a bit of a spring back in my step, and I’m feeling a lot more like my old self.
I’ve been absent without leave from the blogosphere, which means that I’ve been busy. And when I say busy, I mean sleep-deprived busy. As has Mr ShoeThatAlwaysFits.
Which is why we were stunned, dazed and confused when our schedules combined within a 2.5 mile radius in London on Monday. We were in the same place at the same time. In the 10 years we’ve lived south of the border, this is unheard of.
I quickly booked a hotel for us in Kensington for Sunday night – this meant that we could get up slowly on Sunday and head through to the big smoke for the day. We could shop, we could enjoy a glass of wine or two, and then we could shop. Between us we bought three pairs of shoes, two for me one for him. This is a normal and healthy ratio for a female:male shoe-off. Although, I haven’t seen my new shoes since then. Hmm, I may be the victim of a hostage situation – he may actually be holding me to the ‘one pair in, one pair out rule’. I don’t remember that discussion over late night gin in a tin.
We did all that and more and headed off our separate ways on Monday morning. My conference was less than a 30 minute tube ride away, Mr ShoeThatAlwaysFits was a 15 minute drive away so I left for work later than I do every day I’m in the office – a brilliant start to a Monday I find. He finished filming 30 minutes earlier than I did and came to collect me so that we could drive home together. My own windswept and interesting chauffeur – all I had to do was keep a steady supply of coffee and chewing gum flowing on the journey home.
I’m still in a state of shock, and no matter what this week has since thrown at me, I remain well and truly inside my happy bubble.
Thus, our once in a decade day will be remembered as happily as eating warm apple strudel in the restaurant at the top of Grossglockner.