Raving or Behaving at Forty Plus


The child like faces streamed past me and I wondered “what the hell am I doing”. I should have known better, I shouldn’t be here, my head raced and then, to make matters worse, the bouncer told the young girls in front “have your ID’s ready”.

I was nervous, this was something I did every weekend in my twenties, go to a club, dance all night and feel amazing doing it.

What if I couldn’t dance the night away any more?

What if I found it all too stressful and couldn’t enjoy myself?

What if I felt so very old that those young faces made me believe I should be home in bed with my cocoa at eleven o’clock?

We joked with the bouncer,

“Will you ask us for ID too?”

“If you want me to” he replied with a cheeky smile.

And there is the first of the many things that have changed. Now I am a forty something clubber, the bouncers are more friendly. They no longer seemed scary, more an older face in the crowd I could share a joke or frivolous comment with. Oh my goodness the bouncers are younger than me.

So here I am on a Saturday night out with the best of all friends, someone I shared many a long and exciting club night with in my twenties, clubbing again in our forties. My beautiful friend had bought tickets for, what was billed as a revival night, for our favourite club from our youth, as a birthday present for me.

I took a deep breath and entered the club (after a sniffer dog had declared us clean of anything untoward, another new one on me), the intense base beat of the dance music hit me like a wave of nostalgia and my anxieties were suddenly  disintegrated and now there was excited anticipation.

My friend and I dithered slightly about where would be the best place to dance, but after trying a couple of spots, we set ourselves up on the balcony overlooking the DJ. Difference number two, the DJ was in a small booth somewhere undistinguishable in my day, now they are centre stage, the star attraction. To confirm this shift in the world of clubbing, a young man later questioned,

“Who have you come to see?”

See? I never came out to SEE a DJ, I came to hear them.

My friend and I had booked a hotel room for the night so we didn’t have to travel back to our suburban/rural lives after our night out. We shunned the need to dress to impress and be seen in a trendy bar before our night out. Instead we stocked up on gins in a tin, vodka and energy drinks which we sipped whilst lazily transforming ourselves from older ladies to attractive club land ladies.  I asked many slightly silly questions beforehand.

“How much money should we take?”

“Should I take a bag?”

“What about a coat?”

Back in the day, I’d have known what I wanted to do and not worried about what the person next to me was doing.

My friend had done this before quite recently, so calmly reassured me at every step, my goodness it was as if I was about embark on death deifying feat.

So once in the club, the music hit me and I just started dancing, immediately I lost all fear and absorbed every beat with confidence. The moves were still there,” I’m still good at this” I beamed (who knows I might have looked like I was having a fit but it felt good).

So we danced the night away and returned to our hotel room in the early hours. However there are still a couple of things that made it different as a forty something to being a nubile teenager.

  1. I took plasters with me, just in case my feet blistered and I used them, hello, mummy alert.
  2. I drank so much water I had to go to the toilet a lot. I made sure I went in plenty of time because a queue more than six deep might be a problem.
  3. On one of my toilet trips, the girl in the next cubical seemed in trouble. She was obviously splayed on the floor, as her hair tumbled from beneath the divide, into my cubical. I knocked and asked “are you ok?” My nurturing nature in full force. I asked “Do you have water?” She mumbled and I passed my full bottle of water through. She seemed grateful and asked if she could see my face. I kindly declined the offer to put my face on the toilet floor and offered her a waving hand instead. I then informed the toilet attendant about her predicament, a sensible mum in full force.
  4. I tried at one point to take a selfie picture of my friend and I enjoying ourselves. After six failed attempts I gave up. I’m sure I heard the youngster around us sniggering.
  5. The music wasn’t all good and my friend and I discussed writing disgruntled emails referring to the trade descriptions act.
  6. Once back in our hotel room we both removed all make up and showered before bed.

So there you have it, my big fun night out, a big bit of #takingcare. I’m going to link this post to #memorybox because it was so much fun and for me offered a night of complete rejuvenation that I will never forget. I will not be waiting another twenty years before I do that again.

Star Performance

star performanceSo I’ve not been over here in Puffin land for a while, if you’ve missed me I’m sorry. There is always the small matter of The Adoption Social (BiB2014 Finalist I’ll have you know) which keeps me very busy, as do my family and of course my fight against the evil war lord, depression. Briefly, on this subject, I feel great; I’ve been feeling, on the most, so much better than I have in a long time. I won’t say too much, because I will spoil a future blog post, but things for me are on the up and up.

The other thing that I have been very preoccupied with, in a nice way, a happy distraction you might call it, is producing a youth play. This is my second year producing a play with the young members (high school age) of our local amateur dramatics group and it is an enormous amount of fun. Lots of hard work but, enormous fun.

This year we did a who dunit murder, mystery with plenty of suspense, drama and some dodgy deaths. The kids were amazing and although they gave me huge heart palpitations about learning their lines, the prompt did a lot of talking in our final rehearsals; they were all stars to me.

Now I’m feeling a little low at the thought of not seeing them all again soon……..Onwards and upwards.

This is a happy post; it’s a #memorybox post and here is the reason why.

Unfortunately a member of the cast dropped out five days before our first performance. He had a small part with not many lines but all the same it was a little bit of a worry as to how we were going to solve the one man down issue. I hatched a plan in my head, tried very hard to think it through before I spoke it out loud, not always my strongest quality. The excitement of the idea bubbled inside of me and so I just went ahead and asked,

“Stig do you think you could do this part for me?”

At first the eyes said confused, unsure, a little bewildered, so I explained fully what I meant. The eyes soon smiled and danced with delight at the opportunity he was being given. He immediately took the script and went off to learn his lines.

He came to one full rehearsal, struggled a little and became a bit concerned. He wobbled a bit over those five days but he learnt his lines and stayed committed.

So Friday night arrives and the lights go down and then up again. The very first character to appear in the play is Stig. Deep breath and away he goes, loud clear and word perfect. I was so proud.

He managed two performances brilliantly, you could see his confidence grow and transform his frail stature into that of a mighty giant. I was so glad he had this opportunity to shine with all the other cast members, I know it’s done him no end of good and my admiration for his tenacity and incredible ability to constantly overcome things and grow makes my heart burst with pride.

Well done my wonderful Stig. x

A Proud Weekend


proudI did some showing off on twitter at the weekend…see.

So Stig put himself forward for school council and after an initial vote, it came down to him and another child. He had to prepare a speech, informing other students why he would be a good council member and what policies he’s like to bring in. I let him do it himself and then helped him to fine tune it, but it really was all his own work. Once he’d presented his speech the children voted for their favourite candidate. He had to wait a couple of days before the results were announced, I know he was nervous. However the news was good and he is now on the school council and he’s as pleased as punch and I’m beaming with pride.

Tink volunteered his services for a concert on Saturday night. Children, who wanted to be involved, were asked to select an amusing poem that they’d like to recite. Keen to do his bit, raising money for a school in Africa, Tink selected The Walrus and the Carpenter by Lewis Caroll, which apparently came to his notice through a volume of Lemony Snicket. It’s a long poem so some verses were chosen and he then went about memorising them. As the concert approached I could tell he was anxious, increased rudeness and a general decision to be difficult at every point is key indicators that this little boy is struggling. On the Friday night, worried he didn’t know his words he suggested “I don’t think I should do it mummy”. I reassured him that he would do well and then worried myself silly about how much he was worrying. Anyway Saturday night he was a star, even with all his worries and doubts he stood up and presented his poem beautifully, even if I do say so myself.

So yes we had two big achievements over the weekend, definitely special moments for the #Memorybox.

Memory Box

#MemoryBox 22/07/13

awardLast Week was a good week for the boy Stig. He brought home a glowing school report which detailed the incredibly journey of learning and also emotional growth he’s had through the year. We also went on Thursday to watch him receive a school prize at the Prize Giving Ceremony. You’re not told which subject your child is being commended in before the evening so, with anticipation, we thumbed the programme on arrival. Stig’s ability in one particular subject was not being celebrated, no, he was to receive the “Teachers Special Award”. My heart pounded with pride knowing that his teacher also recognised the amazing progress he’s made this year and wished to commend him for it.

To top it all off he’s also had a birthday this week and he’s managed that well too. All the excitement and anticipation has not boiled over into a melt down, he’s enjoyed it, taken guidance and made the most of it.

However, none of this is what most impressed me about my boy. Thursday at Prize Giving we sat packed into a very warm stuffy school hall. The children receiving prizes were asked to sit in a far corner, furthest away from any cool breeze, along school benches. Stig was asked to shuffle into the middle of a tightly packed bench right at the back. I gasped slightly at the thought of him, skin against skin with those other children, feeling their warm limbs against his and in his space. He was to be one of the last children to come up on stage and so in total sat for about forty five minutes cooped up. This would at one point in his life have caused him extreme agitation and unbearable anxiety and yet on that evening he did it. That to me is the true indication of just how far he’s come.


I’ve linked this post to Te Adoption Social #MemoryBox

Memory Box