So that’s it. No more instalments to share with you and it just seems strange not to be cutting and pasting the latest chapter featuring Maggie and Gordon. I’m really going to miss those two guys. To me, the pair of them seem very real and I never thought that you could get such an attachment to characters who are basically a figment of your imagination. I would often think ‘What would Maggie think?’ or ‘How would Gordon react?’ and I’ve at times called Mr R, Gordon. Not that there are any similarities between the two of them ..well maybe a little, but don’t tell him that!

Writing was a really good way to pass the time whilst I’ve not been working. I could have resorted to binge watching box sets on Netflix whilst scoffing my way through packets of fig rolls and Percy Pigs. Not that I’m saying that I always gave the telly a wide berth. I did resort to taking to the sofa armed with the remote control now and again especially on days when I was on my own. I should have been doing productive stuff like organising my spice jars or putting the zillion packets of photos going back to the 70’s into some sort of order, but to be totally truthful, I really couldn’t be arsed!

And whilst we are on the subject of being totally truthful, I have to admit that I’ve really struggled over the last few months which is not like me at all. As a rule I’m a pretty much a happy kind of person. Someone who goes along with the ‘The cup’s half full’ way of thinking and rarely gets anxious or particularly stressed about things unless it’s having to use a slip road when I’m driving.

I’ve been feeling sad and anxious and adrift. It’s not just about Covid, although it certainly hasn’t helped the situation, but I feel a bit redundant and invisable at times. I’m the dowdy woman in her midlife years wearing sensible clothing in unflattering shades of beige carrying her bags for life and spending time in front of a mirror plucking the hairs from her chin. The high point of my week used to be a trip to our local John Lewis, something my friends used to love teasing me about but our John Lewis is no more. Mr R suggested we go on trips to look around Sainsburys instead. I’m welling up just thinking about the highlight of my week could now be a stroll around Sainsburys, a bloody supermarket!

At the moment my self confidence and self worth is way down there. I feel the clock ticking away and mourn the ambitions I had that were never fulfilled and the adventures that I never went on. Of course I know that I’m only 60 and not 90 and hardly over the hill and ready for carpet slippers and a sholley and there’s still plenty of time to do whatever I want but that’s how I’m feeling at the moment. It’ll be better once I’m back at work in two weeks time. Having a routine, a purpose and feeling valued.

Two weeks ago I made the decision to go to counselling sessions. Something I never thought I would ever need. I had my first session yesterday. I’m hoping that they will help me put things into perpective and start loving myself again. To feel stronger and more confident. Realise that being short and overweight doesn’t make me a lesser person. Yes, I really need to do something about that for health reasons… I’m a high risk person for dying of Covid which is very scary….but I don’t want to feel that people see me as stupid or lazy. I’m neither but there is the stigma attached to being overweight that you are thick and a couch potato who stuffs their faces all day. Some larger people have the attitude that if someone doesn’t like what they see well that’s their problem. I’m not one of them. I feel ashamed and want to apologise for how I look.

I’m probably wallowing in self pity and in need of a gentle kick up the backside. So many people are feeling the same and are in a much worse situation than me. Jobs lost, income gone, the risk of losing their homes and of course experiencing the terrible grief of having loved ones taken.

Who am I to moan about how I feel!

Rather than bottling up my feelings it’s been good to share on here. It’s not easy to admit to struggling but it has helped to write down how I feel. I’m lucky that I have good friends who are great listeners and that’s just what I need. I know that I’ll bounce back but meanwhile thank you for listening.

Brigitte xx