So, I was having lunch with my mother. We were, inevitably, discussing the parlous state of my reproductive equipment, something that she, for some reason, feels she has a personal stake in. I am very grateful she waited until the nice couple at the next table had finished and gone, because, frankly, knowing my mother, there was a high chance they would have still been there when she first mentioned the word ‘ovary’, as she is of the unshakable belief that absolutely no one listens to conversations at the next table even though she does exactly that herself (‘Mum? Did you want more coffee?’ ‘Hush a moment sweetie – the blonde lady is talking about her mother-in-law’s shrivelled little prune-face again…’ ).
And then she started, for no particular reason, to tell me about some acquaintances of hers. My age, married for a few years, wanting kids. Apparantly, now on the brink of divorce, as Mrs Acquaintance has turned baby-making into a Mission and Mr A can no longer take the strain of thermometers, being forced to wear boxer-shorts, and the sudden removal of his wife by mean-minded aliens who have replaced her with a humourless drone focussed solely on reproduction with attendant terrifying effect on his own libido. I think I had adopted the facial expression known as ‘And you are telling me this for why?’ at this point, because Mum seemed to take ahold of herself and said hastily, ‘Not that this applies to you of course, as you have, you know, real surgical problems, but,’ (oh God, she’s going to say it) ‘some people really just need to relax.’
Long pause, in which I stared thoughtfully past her left ear.
And then I said, ‘I wonder what her side of the story is?’
And left it at that.
And yes, then we did end up, damn it all, discussing my own state of relaxation and whether I should go to my step-Dad’s naturopath and be forcibly relaxed by vitamins.
The thing is (not that I told my mother) but I am currently whatever the total and absolute opposite of relaxed is. I ache all the time because every muscle in my entire body, from scalp to toe, is clenched. Or, really, CLENCHED. I had a lovely warm bath complete with sweet-scented bath oil this afternoon and am still CLENCHED. Also, the clenching has affected my stomach, and I am having near-permanent indigestion and heart-burn, so everything I eat hurts, and everything I don’t eat hurts, and I am super-cranky. Also, can’t sleep for being so damn CLENCHED. So, super-cranky and mentally incapacitated. Coffee impossible, as it totally hurts like red-hot lemon-soaked razors. Cold-turkey now too. Please, please, no one come near me or speak to me, I am not answerable for the consequences.
It’s too much waiting. Too much time to play Doomsday Scenario in my head. Too much time to get nicely paranoid at everything that twinges. Too much time to assume the entire NHS hates me and they’re just waiting to stitch absolutely everything shut forever, for, oh, no reason, but that I must have annoyed someone or why is the Random Shit Generator aimed at me these days? Or is it? Am I whining? Am I fine, really, and making a fuss? Am I not making enough of a fuss? Should I just give over, move to the Shetlands and raise Soay sheep? And so on, ad infinitum.
(Incidentally, lady with adorable toddler in coffee shop this morning? Don’t tell your friend you want to sell him on the Internet like you mean it – you make Baby Jesus cry. Also, weird lady in queue behind you).