Sunday, 30 January 2011

Friday December 31st 2010 – A Lot of This Time Last Year.

I wrestled with The Big Ugly for an hour this morning before they managed to trick me into a headlock. The worst thing about it was that for one adrenaline surging moment I thought I was going to floor them. I was so close to squeezing a gasp of decency out of them. As it happened they basically farted in my face.
Not pleasant. Yet apparently we should be grateful that they are willing to send us another engineer as early as the 7th of January. This is the ‘earliest appointment’ we are told and even if we were to speak to the Supreme Overload of The Big Ugly himself, ‘well, even he couldn’t get an engineer out sooner.’ I’m not sure how that is supposed to make me feel better. It certainly hasn’t triggered my grateful switch. I can only interpret it as an announcement that The Big Ugly is very strong on equal opportunities and spreads a thick crust of incompetence throughout every level of its organisation.
However, I am grateful that, for reasons I don’t understand, my VPN connection is allowing me to carry on working from home. Annoyingly, I didn’t know this last night and would have slept a lot better if I had.
Still, it doesn’t really matter, as I don’t think I would have been very awake anyway. I’m not exactly here today. No, you see, I’m there. Thursday December 31st 2009 – that’s where I am.
Did you know that there was a full-moon on New Year’s Eve last year? Or, to be precise, a blue moon, the 13th full moon of the year.
You are going to have to forgive me, for a few posts will mostly consist of ‘this time last year’...
This time last year I was in a bit of a strop. How things change eh? Actually it was very different and it was also very sudden.
On the 23rd of June 2009 the Seven Bitches were instantly vanquished by a simple phone call. The following 6 months were dizzy and delicious, yet somehow more focused than any other time I can remember. Things were moved, changed, created, discarded, decided and discovered at a perfect pace. For once, I’d given myself enough time to get ready. It was wonderful. There were so many lists and so many ticks. This all culminated in the December, which was a blissful frenzy of list-mania. Just before bedtime on the 30th of December 2009 I had a big smile, a stack of empty biros and only one item on my list of things that were actually going to happen left unchecked: wash make-brushes.
The 31st should have been a breeze. I could have spent the whole morning wiping each individual bristle in my war paint arsenal and enjoyed an afternoon of gloating over my completed agenda. It would have been the first time I’d ever actually got through an entire ‘to do’ page. Unfortunately, I woke up grumpy, dithery and hopelessly unmotivated. It was a sort of stinking hangover, made worse by the injustice that I hadn’t had a sip of the fermented stuff for nine months.
Our first baby was due on the 1st and I had been so prepared for it that I might as well have written a list for the next day consisting of just one action: Give birth. I think that sluggish beginning to New Year’s Eve was mostly because I realised that it might not turn out like that. In fact, I’d pretty much decided that from now on I’d just be waiting. It was almost a justification for never finishing anything. I reasoned that if there were still a bundle of things to do, I could pass the time much more pleasantly waiting for my little bundle to arrive. I was on strike, not daring to tackle the final task, as I didn’t have a clue how much longer I’d need to keep myself busy.
I still haven’t cleaned my make-up brushes. I was given some new ones and the old ones are still waiting for their turn on the list of things that actually happen.
Hoobiz and I watched the fireworks on the telly at midnight and by then I was much calmer and more resigned to the idea of what will be will be. We went to bed just after one and entwined in my wonderful pregnancy pillow, I fell asleep almost immediately.
At 2:50am I woke up in what I can only describe as a perfect moment of clarity. My eyes sprung open and for a second everything was vividly still. There was total silence, just before an incredibly clear ‘pop’.
‘Darling,’ I said gently waking Hoobiz, ’my waters have just broken. Can you get me a towel please?’
Hobbiz sprung up like a gazelle and raced onto the landing, darting first left and then right in a manic dance of tiny circles. He was spinning there on his tiptoes for what seemed like a good 20 seconds. I lay on the bed watching, laughter and liquid gushing out of me.
‘Where do we keep the towels again?’ asked a fuzzy Hoobiz.
‘In the airing cupboard,’ I replied, when I could actually speak. I was unsure if the cramping pain was a contraction or if I’d just pulled a muscle during Hoobiz pantomime.
He spiralled a few more times before remembering where we kept the airing cupboard. After that he was fine, I just think his moment of clarity took a few minutes to warm up.
Still, neither of us had to wait too much longer for that perfect moment. At 12:50pm on New Year’s Day The Little Perfect One arrived.
I can’t believe that was a whole year ago. Like anything huge it feels clear enough to have happened yesterday, but so momentous that it’s already part of history.
Now back here in 2010...here comes midnight...  Happy Birthday Little Perfect One! I hope you enjoyed the last 12 months as much as I did. Thank you TLPO. Thank you for being the perfect start to any year.

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