I have to apologise for neglecting you this week. I've been doing a lot more than what has become my usual which ended up being way too much yesterday, leaving me collapsed in a heap about 24 hours ago, able to do little more than lie on the sofa and snore. Blogging may therefore be more erratic again for the next little while. The good news is that this morning, although I still felt tired, I wasn't lying in bed unable to move as I would have been a few weeks ago. I have been a lot more careful today, but it's always worth testing what the limits are every so often. My last trip to the hospital sugggested that I could be in for 1-2 years of this, so I'd better get used to it.
My problem is that I am absolutely useless at pacing myself. If I have some energy, I am consumed by an insane and irrational optimism that makes me think "yay, I'm better" and I tend to go at stuff full pelt until I suddenly just hit a wall and collapse. Maybe I'll learn, but in some ways I don't want to because one day I will be right and I will be better.
Anyway, the hardcore politicos among you will probably be highly disappointed by this post - but I have no sympathy for you because you were warned in the title. You didn't have to click on it.
My daughter has given me a whole load of tear jerking proud mummy moments recently. From demonstrating the St Bernard's Waltz at her school St Andrew's Night ceilidh, to reading a poem in Scots (those of you who know her will realise how hard that must have been for a child who has an very soft Scots accent)at the same event, to attaining her level D in writing recently. She has such a happiness and zest for everything she's doing at the moment. Barely a week goes by without her flying out of school, full of sparkly eyed excitement for something they've done. They do such interesting things these days. In February, she'll be part of a Scottish Opera programme of performing in schools. The other week the kids were split up into teams and they had to design a chocolate bar and present it, Dragon's Den style, to the head teacher.
Anyway, the reason I'm so proud today is that her class was set an assignment to write a new fairy tale and the writers of the five best efforts would get to read their stories to the Primary 1 kids. I haven't seen the final version, but I did have a sneak peak at her story plan. It involved a feisty Princess rescuing her best friend, with the help of some woodland animals (singing rabbits who were able to charm snakes away from the entrance to a pit they were guarding, for example) from an evil sorcerer king. I had typed wizard, but was corrected. What do I know?
I'm as proud of her for absorbing my rants about the portrayal of female characters in fairy tales, which she has been subjected to for virtually all her life as for being chosen to read to the younger children.
I'm really glad she is so enthusiastic about writing. She carries round a notebook now and is forever scribbling away. She's very versatile too. I can really only do blogging and that, for me at least, is little more than splurging my random thoughts onto the keyboard with very little filtration process between my brain and the screen. On the other hand, she can do poetry, which scares me at the best of times, almost effortlessly.
Her grandmother, my mother-in-law, did proper writing. She defied the expectations of her family to sign the publishing contract on her book, a collection of Scottish Fairy stories called the Blacksmith and the Fairies, just six weeks before she died in 1987. Much to my amazement, the link above is to Amazon - I can't believe it's still on there. I must show my husband when he gets in. She also wrote a self published collection of poetry some years earlier. Anna never knew her, which is a great shame because they would have got on so well. She would have loved Anna's curious, quite quirky, mind.
I just hope that Anna's voracious appetite for words in any form continues to grow. I literally can't keep the girl in books, and neither can our local library. It is up, therefore, to her favourite blogger to keep her in reading material. Although she does have an alternative that she likes. Please don't report me to Social Services!