“I am your Prince and you will marry me,” Humperdinck said.
Buttercup whispered, “I am your servant and I refuse.”
“I am you Prince and you cannot refuse.”
“I am your loyal servant and I just did.”
“Refusal means death.”
“Kill me then.”
The Princess Bride by William Goldman
Ingredients: 2 or people, 1 x home, 2 x personalities, 2 x jobs, multiple roles
Optional, add to taste: animals, children, car, nanny, cleaner, housework, garden, dreams, personal tastes and interests, humour, neighbours, income, parents-in-law, siblings, illness, personal space and long-suffering.
Method: fold ingredients together carefully, heat gently, do not over-cook.
Warning: some ingredients expire within 28 days.
We are well into week 6 of lockdown here in the UK.
Much of the online chat about wellbeing and mental health during this pandemic has focussed on single people, and the elderly and vulnerable who live alone. This is absolutely where we should be focusing our thoughts and prayers, our phone calls and assistance – of course!
But don’t forget (on your prayer list) those living with cellmates, flatmates, elderly parents, grown up children and spouses – like me, living in married bliss with my Hubby.
That is, spare a thought for my dear Hubby!
How many of you, before you got married, or moved in together, had any complaints whatsoever about your lifestyle, opinions or daily habits? I didn’t.
But in close confinement, I’ve quickly discovered that I measure up rather poorly in this co-habitation thing. Instead of ‘practically-perfect-in-every-way’ I’m more like ‘extremely-stubborn-and-suspicious’.
Or to put a different spin on it, perhaps you were happily enjoying your well-deserved retirement when one or more of your grown up chickens came back to roost?
As you stoop your tired body over to pick up yet another wet towel from the bathroom floor, or you stare into the fridge that used to contain the leftover chicken pie you were saving for dinner, you stifle an outburst. You’d never repeat this to a living soul, but internally … “Bring back the empty nest!”
You and your ‘cellmate’ are stuck together in this when-is-it-ever-going-to-end-?-lockdown … for as long as you both shall live.
“I feel like I’m walking on eggshells around you lately,” said Hubby 2 weeks in.
“I just need some alone time,” I told him. “I’m not used to having you around ALL THE TIME!” “And this house is feral. I clean the kitchen and a minute later, it’s dirty again. And I’m running out of food ideas.”
Bit of dramatic licence there, but truly …
Hubby says now, that I wasn’t that bad, that he has quite enjoyed working from home with me. I WAS BAD.
In a few short days Hubby and I lost our guest room to an office, which in the adrenaline of the moment was an easy decision to make, but which resulted in some anxiety and sadness for me as soon as the adrenaline wore off. That was my Mama’s room when she visits. Add to the mix a global pandemic and a company to save. Then heap on a hefty dose of HORMONES. The perfect storm.
The real low point, Hubby reminded me tonight, was when I imagined what would happen if I got Coronavirus and then proceeded to cry over my own death.
I’ve since installed the app, ‘P Tracker’, on Hubby’s phone. “It will help you next time,” I reassured him. “I don’t need the app,” said he.
Hang on a minute … if he knows, how come every 28 days I complain of feeling poorly, throw a few tantrums, turn into an ogre then retreat into a ball … only to emerge and think “Oh that’s why?!”
Every 28 days I forget. Many happy weeks Hubby and I have still to come in lockdown
The mind boggles.
P.s. And that noisy neighbour who stays up all night watching action films at at an ear-blasting volume. I’m afraid you’re stuck with him too.
P.p.s. In other news, the seedlings on the terrace are almost ready to be planted out.
P.p.p.s. We’ve had a bit of rain, which suits my ‘trapped inside’ mood and made this morning a little darker so that I wasn’t woken up at 5am by the birds or the sun.
P.p.p.p.s. We still have rusks – score!
P.p.p.p.p.s. Just heard that Nando’s in Gloucester Road is open for takeaways.
P.p.p.p.p.p.s. It’s easy homemade leek soup and Hubby’s bread from the freezer for supper. That’s as good as it gets and I’m soooo grateful.
P.p.p.p.p.p.p.s. Sorry to any sensitive readers for whom hormonal cycles are a no-no subject. I’m sure you’re laughing about it though.