This post was supposed to be a complaining post. An examination of the day’s small but significant difficulties which were banding together to make me feel low, lethargic, as though I wanted to curl up on the couch and watch movies with a large block of chocolate.

In fact, half-way through the morning’s preparations, I distinctly heard my childhood friend’s voice in my mind, saying, as she sometimes used to; “Complain, complain, complain!” (It has to be said in an accent, it doesn’t really matter which one, as long as you relax the vowel sounds and drag out the ‘a’…..and yes Dad, I see you reading this and trying it out 🙂 )

It started last night. Yesterday afternoon. I became hungry. Really hungry. Ravenous actually. It’s possible that if there’d been junk food in the house, I’d….Who am I kidding? If there’d been even the sniff of chocolate, or good cheese, cake or chocolate-covered peanuts, I’d have fallen upon them like a ravening beast, tearing the packaging open, to get to the impossibly sweet, calorie-laden contents.

There wasn’t any.


I contemplated going out for something. I imagined it, let the image grow in my mind until it all but took over all other thought processes. But I didn’t.

I did eat like a crazy person though. Banana, frozen grapes, chicken breast, sliced and salted, the shaved roast pork, bought for the kids lunches and finally, three Weetbix with milk and brown sugar. In between, I drank water until finally, I collapsed, sated, in front of the tv and watched mindlessly for an hour.

It was all weighed and measured before I put it into my mouth and I still came in (just) under the 1500 Calories I’ve decided is my daily limit. Win!

Then this morning when I woke, my body had been replaced by a stack of giant marshmallows, so that I had to rock back and forth, just to get enough momentum to get myself upright and out of bed. My legs felt heavy, my mood was low, I smiled some of the time but I wasn’t feeling it. I just wanted to hide away.

“Complain, complain, complain”, right?

When I walked Zac to school this morning, him with his guitar case on his back, dwarfing him, me carrying his bag, it was my intention to come straight home and explain to myself why this really needed to be a gentle, pottering sort of day.

After I’d said goodbye and watched him walk through the gate, I turned for home gratefully, knowing that today there would be silence and solitude for at least the morning but my tread was heavy and my shoulders were slumped.

Until I got to the top of the hill. Because by then I’d been walking for 15 minutes and my body had, without me registering it, warmed up, become a little more elastic. I decided to give it just a little more. An extra 15 minutes, that’s all. So I walked.

It’s so beautiful where we live. The soft green of the grass and the trees, breezes, gentle sounds of people driving, walking. Even the rubbish truck went slowly down the road in front of me, its long mechanical arm extending and retracting  easily, smoothly as if sensing my need for calm today.

A little girl in a pink top asked me excitedly as I walked past “Have you ridden the camels?!” and when I answered that I hadn’t, “I have! I went yesterday!” She was there when I walked back that way, waiting to exchange one last snippet about her experience as I passed her again “I’m on holiday, the camels were really high up!” and we smiled at each other in a tiny shared moment as I lifted my hand to wave to her parents, standing, talking in the driveway.

After that I noticed the bright yellow frangipani, my favourite flower, bursting from between dark green leaves, I noticed my legs moving easily, the hill in front of me, rising to the peak of my street and all the gardens made so lovely by the people who live here.

So, this was supposed to be a complaining post and I’ve been gypped, because it turns out that everything’s actually okay after all. Better than okay.

Someone get me the manager!