I can be petty.
I’m bloody furious.
This year has been one thing after another - interspersed with some lovely bits, to be fair - but seriously, enough.
I’m going to preface this piece by saying that I spent a thoroughly delightful two and a half hours this morning watching a workshop about creating meaningful stories online. Or “marketing” as it’s still known in less lofty circles. The woman teaching the class is super smart, engaging and I love watching her mind work. Why yes, you’re correct, I have no business to market. Don’t care. I’ve come to appreciate that I watch this stuff for fun. You may buy a book, a movie, an album, a meal…I buy workshops that are within my budget and likely to be very good value. This one certainly was. My brain engaged and started throwing around its own ideas, only for Life to interrupt. Nothing bad; just Life, but I am not good at being torn from something in which I’m engrossed. Class, tv show, activity…best just leave me alone. These days I try my darndest to adjust with apparent ease but sometimes I fail.
So there’s that.
Then it became apparent that our family doctor, on whom we had been relying to help our daughter with A Thing, is not “able” to because as she’s not 18 until the autumn, she still has to be assessed and dealt with by a specialist children's unit. A service for which the waiting list is currently more than 12 months. A service of which we have experience, and as a result I had to make an official complaint. Is this still technically any kind of service?
We live in the country. Not Country Living; the actual country. As is typical of rural England, there are a good number of relatively well off people; a sprinkling of rich land owners, and a heck of a lot of the rural poor. I see the kids from these families - that cannot afford private consultations and medication - repeatedly turning to self-medication because illegal drugs are readily available in the community. If anyone starts on with the, “If they can afford a phone and bloody weed then they can…” I will disrespectfully ask you to leave and not return. These people asked for help. They’ve done all the right things and they are desperate. Nope. Get on a waiting list for the next year plus; don’t expect to hear from us, and I hear Ollie’s a good contact down the Old Bear. Good luck with your exams.
So there’s also that.
Personally I’ve had a few weeks of less than stellar health. I am very grateful for the fact that I was able to see doctors, who - assuming the worst case scenario - have quickly poked, prodded, x-rayed, scanned, syringed and studied me for more evidence and (thank heaven) then said on more than one occasion, “No it’s nothing terminal after all. Bye.”
Er..? So..? What is it then? And how can I prevent/care/support whatever it is in my own time and save yours? And they tell us to stay away from Dr Google. She’s often all we’ve got.
So that too.
Part of my irritability is perhaps due to the fact that I’m having a slight detour on my “HRT Journey”. Am I ready to slowly come off it because of side effects I don’t like (according to Dr Google)? Or, do I just need another dose increase? Do I even want another dose increase?
The popular press has done a sterling job of covering perimenopause and the ways in which HRT can be a huge, life-changing blessing for some women. I’ll applaud that all day long. It’s way overdue and I’m just grateful that things are changing.
But I’m pissed off today so I’m asking: where the hell are the post-menopausal women; the women who can’t take HRT; the women who can for a while and then find their bodies do not like it? I’ll bet (and hope) that the celebrities currently doing such a fab job around perimenopause will extend their advocacy careers into post-meno when their experience reaches that point, but for some reason, I’m not seeing anyone doing it now.
I understand (see above) the importance and power of a good story, well told, to create a sea-change in societal behaviour, but there are voices missing (again). Perhaps because, like me, they just don’t wanna join in when they’ve got so much stuff to deal with personally. That would be understandable and honestly, most days you just want to talk about anything else. Anything. For me this week it’s this woman who is a genius and makes me LOL.
Take a breath.
I wasn’t going to write any of this. Then I thought, “Write it and then delete it. It’ll be therapeutic.” Then I thought, “You are a real person and you have days when you’re pretty much mad at the world, not always in a rational way, and that’s okay.”
I’m playing myself a tiny, privileged violin (my life is good). A bigger one for my daughter and her peers. A huge one for the NHS professionals who have been shafted by this government and poor management. Another for the piecemeal destruction of this country by the Tories..
That’s my Friday. If it’s yours also, I feel you. If it’s not, well done. You’re a champ.
Normal service will be resumed next week. x