Thursday 4 May 2017

A change is gonna come and I want to share something with you before it happens. 

A letter. An homage to the ten years we have spent as carefree loved-up idiots.

There are another 16 weeks to go before we become a family; a mum and dad, parents, providers... grown ups. 

This is so much more real than anything else we have shared. Even our marriage which we entered into wide-eyed but willing to work hard. We promised each other forever but everyone knows what happens to those words 50% of the time. This feels different. 

Muddling our DNA to create a human of our own is the opitimy of commitment.

No matter what happens to us as a couple, when this baby is born the world will contain a fusion of our cells, a fleshy embodiment of our love that will breathe and feel and cry. 

It's so beautiful it embarrasses me.

People ask me how I am feeling as a kind of code for "how's pregnancy treating you" and I am at a loss for words.

I want to tell them how amazing and emotional and gross it is to carry our baby. But it all feels so private so I just say I'm great, you're great, baby's great.

But what I do want to say publicly is I wouldn't want to be doing this with anybody but you.

This next step in our life together is an interesting one because from what I gather it isn't all wonderful. Our friends and the blogs and well meaning advice-givers all want to share what a challenge having a baby will be - the hurdles we will have to face together and the sleep we will have to give up.

Most of our choices until now have been fun-driven: the holidays, the gadgets, the nights out, the £80 steak nights because we wanna... Are we mad to give up all this delicious disposable time and income?

(Please God don't say yes because it's too late and I can't do this by myself.)

But even if we are waving goodbye to our most selfish years for the time being, we have the most incredible bank of memories to look back on.

And you always keep the big promises so I know we will make this fun.

We'll do the day trips and the family holidays and get pissed in the afternoon because we don't know how to be anyone else.

And I trust you to help me find myself again if motherhood swallows me up for a time.

But I hope we'll both be patient with one another as we make this huge change. 

You are already steaming ahead emotionally as I do the physical work to craft this child.

You miss us when we are apart - asking me to show my belly the minute you walk in the door.

You don't feel silly chatting away to your little boy through my skin.

You are always imagining the ways that you will love us and care for us once he arrives.

It's your positivity and excitement that has made my pregnancy feel easy.

And I want to thank you for your incredible support.

It's your unwavering strength and nerves of steel that I will be calling on as I hold your hand and push this baby out.

Happy Birthday Deej xxx

Saturday 14 February 2015

I'm feeling the love today.

So I'm going to share the reading from our wedding.

We chose this extract from Bob Marley's diary because it doesn't talk so much about romantic love.

Your heart thumping in your chest and gestures of love and affection are important to any relationship, of course. 

But the reality of love in the long term, for us anyway, is so much more.

We wanted a reading that spoke about support, about building someone up and forgiving each other when you've been an asshole.

I asked my granddad to read it for us because he and my nan have been in love for over 50 years.

They've got that shit down.

Their commitment to each other and the life they lead is a real inspiration and I was so honoured when granddad stepped up to read for us in October.

Only once in your life: An extract from Bob Marley’s journal

“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around.

You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more.

You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you.

When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement.

They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself.

Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful.

There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around.

You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are.

The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever.

Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again.

Colours seem brighter and more brilliant.

Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face.

In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby.

Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you.

You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon.

You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible.

You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you.

You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end.

Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.”

Happy Valentine's Day xxx
The themes of this poem speak to me on a few levels, it's pretty lusty - I like that.

But mostly the sentiment I appreciate is about taking the moment, living in the now and doing what you really feel like.

Wait for too long and you'll never get the chance.

It's a sort of 17th century YOLO:

Wednesday 19 November 2014

I feel desperately sorry for Nick Conrad.

It doesn't sound to me like he's had the sort of sex most of us treasure.

The cooperative, lusty, loving and mutually orgasmic kind that comes from a place of communication, tenderness and sharing.

When misguidedly speaking for all men is Nick calling from his own experience of physical relationships?

A horrifying thought.

I hope his hugely generalising comments are enough to get men a plenty fired up and joining the debate that so far is saturated by middle class social commentators, feminists, columnists and politicians.

Surely his comments are damning and offensive enough to get dads, traditionalists and average blokes down the pub berating him.

All loving partners, husbands and generally respectful, sexual males should be furious that their healthy desire has been aggressively likened to a dog with his tail being yanked.

It's time to stand up to the idiots like Nick Conrad who really believe that men are just dicks on a stick waiting to dive into the nearest willing (or unwilling) vagina.

The producers of his show should have cut him off mid rant. There is no way that such damaging rhetoric would have been acceptable if he were talking about any other controversial topic - race, religion, immigration etc.

But because it's consent he is willfully poo pooing he was allowed to continue spouting damaging and hurtful generalisations that don't paint either sex in a light that even exists as far as I've ever seen.

What he has said is an extension of so many conversations I've heard in relation to the topic of consent and in particular the Ched Evans' rape conviction:

"What was she doing with him at that time of night anyway?"

"If she didn't want to have sex why did she go back to his hotel?"

"What was she doing wandering around drunk on her own?"

"If she was that drunk how does she know whether she consented or not?"

The fact is that a court of law determined that she was too intoxicated to consent but Ched Evans had sex with her anyway.

That is rape.

And apologising or justifying his behaviour away is not only disrespectful to victims of rape and sexual assault it is damaging to people's faith in our justice system.

Friday 10 October 2014

My ebook has had its first legit unbiased review.

I'm so chuffed to see that it's reaching an audience that isn't just my mum and mates.

Not that I don't appreciate their bountiful reviews and support - I'm so lucky to have them but an organic review from a reader in America feels different.

And I want some more!!

I am passionate about a girl's right to be squishy.

With summer safely over and the beginning of jumper season just around the corner most women I know are breathing a sigh of relief.

No more sucking it in at the poolside, no more agonising choices between "clean" eating or juicy burgers.


I don't usually get involved in this kind of diet chat but more recently I've found myself pinching those extra inches around my hips and fretting about my rounded cider belly.

Not because I'm upset with my body (it works just fine) but because I'm getting married this month and every where I go people are asking me about my "wedding diet."

Which leaves me pondering other people's view on my squishy bits... Are these friends, colleagues and acquaintances asking about my diet because they think I'm CHUBBY?

But it's not their fault of course.

What we're all fighting against as women is this general attitude that for your body to be worthy you need to be toned - you need to have a tight tummy and long muscular legs and you certainly can't have two chins in photos... even if you are smiling your hardest.

And it's my wedding day so I'm supposed to want to be the most perfect princess bride, in the best shape of my life, sauntering down the aisle.

So it's not rude to suddenly ask me about my eating/dieting habits - it's the norm.

But the reality is I wouldn't be me if I wasn't looking forward to lunch whilst still full from breakfast.

And it's certainly not like me to fret about my lumps and bumps.

I'm not big by "normal" women's standards. I'm a typical UK shop bought size 12. And the magazines tell me I'm an apple shape, which I'd agree with... Mostly because they said Scarlett Johansson is one too.

I like to think I'm a toffee apple, with sticky thin legs and a sweet, delicious round middle.

I like having 'curves,' I think my body is soft and feminine and does its job of carting my soul around day-to-day just fine.

Thankfully my career isn't reliant on me having toned abs or pronounced cheekbones which is why I'm all for mayonnaise on my chips and chocolate with my wine.

My heartfelt sympathy goes out to anyone going hungry for their art (if they'd rather not.)

I was lucky enough to grow up in a house where my mum encouraged and nurtured my positive body image.

And thankfully it's a gift that I carry with me today.

I truly never even once heard of mum going on a diet or moaning about her weight.

And if I dared mention my size or anyone else's she would be quick to correct me.

- Is this person smart, funny, nice to be around?

- Are they doing well at school, are they respectful, are they kind?

- What are your favourite things about them and why?

These questions were always so so much more important than what do they look like or how much do they weigh?

And ultimately that is how I need to look at myself in the run up to what I'm anticipating will be one of the best ever days in my life.

Will I be any less of a bride for not being a size 8? No.

Will I be loved any less, promised any less? No.

So next time someone asks me if I'm on a wedding diet I'll stop lying to fit in.

I'll stop pretending that I'm "trying to cut back" and "eating healthier."

Because there is so much more to my life than numbers on a scale or tape measure.

I've got a bangin' party to plan, with a killer buffet and booze on tap!

No room for calorie counting at our wedding.

See you on the other side ! xxxxxxxxxx