Movie Star Syndrome

The last couple of days I’ve felt like a movie star. OK, I regularly feel like a movie star…. Matt Damon, Ryan Gossling, Matt Damon… but I mean it differently this time. This time I felt like two movie stars… sadly though, neither was exactly glamorous.

On Sunday, I was Mary Poppins. Without the flying umbrella. It rained, it poured and as the Old Man snored off his hangover, I hung out with the girls, making pancakes, singing carols and even making curtains for their playroom. Then, as the thunder rolled, we pulled the curtains at 2pm (how gorgeously winter), lit the fire (how gorgeously Christmassy), cuddled up on the sofa (how gorgeously gorgeous) with a large bowl of sweets, and watched Happy Feet. A perfect day…. (rounded off rather deliciously once the kids were in bed with a bottle of wine and a double dose of X-Factor…)

Yesterday however, I turned into Cruella de Ville. With a chirpy smile on my face to lull them into a false sense of security I took them to the local hospital for their Swine Flu Jab. As we queued and filled in forms, they danced and laughed and played – oblivious to the outraged screams of pain coming from the other room. Pale faced parents carried red faced children back through our room, but my girls danced away, blissfully happy in the trust they have that I will never cause them harm. I did try to explain, but there’s a fine line between a warning and scaring the beejaysus out of them.

So they led us into the room and behind the curtain. And now I had to make a choice. Who was going to go first? Who would be braver? I opted for little Poppy to have the blissful ignorance, judging I could rationalise better with Daisy. As the needle plunged into her podgy thigh, she screamed, her shocked eyes wide and accusing. No-one was laughing now. Especially Daisy. She now knew what was coming, and she was intent on going. She made a run for it but I managed to pull her out from under the table, desperately trying to ignore her wretched cries “Please mummy, don’t let her hurt me! I don’t want a hole in my leg!” I soothed her with (false, let’s face it) words of comfort but it still took me and another nurse to hold her down while the second took the plunge.

In fairness they recovered as soon as soon as two lollipops made an appearance, but as we sat in the recovery room (I have no doubt this is in fact for the parents to have time to get their legs to stop shaking rather than to see if the children have a reaction) Daisy looked quite determined, hands on hip, stamping of foot. “I am never coming back here again!”

I didn’t have the heart to tell her she would be… round two is in three weeks. Oh joy.

About Grin & Tonic by Alana Kirk

Bouncing into middle age armed with courage, ambition and a pair of tweezers (chin hairs for anyone over the age of 45 reading this) I am a writer with a mission: to redefine this midway point in my life when the last thing I want to do is hang up my high heels and become invisible. This is the end of the beginning, not the beginning of the end. A single mum to 3 fabulous girls, an author, and a fundraising consultant, both ends of my candle are on fire. As I enter this new stage of my life, I want to explore what it means for 'mid-aged' women today, who were promised they could have it all, ended up doing it all, and just do not identify with the traditional image of middle age.
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1 Response to Movie Star Syndrome

  1. cath c says:

    so sorry.

    brave mummy. sometimes you just have to suck it up…and so do the kids. not very sympathic, i know, but i recently went through similar with my kids. the look of betrayal never changes….well unitl their about 14.


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