Not much has occurred since I was last in this place. First I was ill, then the littlest of the family and now my other two family members have succumbed and full circle I now have an eye infection. We are a family on comedy roller skates passing the baton of illness along to one another with a few drops in between, this is NO fun ride!
Yesterday was the first time in just over two weeks that I have ventured further than the ten minute walk to the kids school and the nearby shops, such has been the basic living due to illness. My mother laughed and laughed yesterday when I described my excitement getting onto the smelly bus for my first trip into the city in a long time! Oh the excitement of being out of the house, out of my immediate surroundings and in and amongst commuters and people with 'proper' jobs, observing everyone with places to go, people to see. I sat and imagined living the life of the solicitor sat behind me, who was on his phone the whole of the twenty minute journey, ferrying information from one group to the next, calling people back to cancel and confirm meetings, sounding increasingly panicked whilst all at once professional. I can't imagine that life anymore.
Life has felt a little blurry for a while but for the last couple of days it has felt all the more surreal because I have been wearing sunglasses to deter myself from scratching my irritated eyes and to prevent people from being traumatised by my 'new look', they call it 'pink eye' for a reason! When you wear sunglasses during the day when the sun is not present, people are confused and generally find you quite pompous it would seem. I got followed in several shops, an eye roll from a woman serving me, a giggle from some school girls and a look of pity from a fair few who I presume thought I had a hang over! So, in summary not only do I not feel great but now I feel judged too. Awesome!
I do enjoy the sifting that seems to come from these quiet days, sifting through old letters and photographs and old art work and journals. Watching favourite films and being instantly transported back to times gone by, the Rocky Boxset triggered a lot of that. Suddenly I was thinking about my first kiss with my first boyfriend, picturing myself so clearly outside the front door of my mum's house. I began recollecting moments spent with 'Panay', a boy who made school all worthwhile! He would follow me around school flattering me, enjoying watching me squirm with shyness and embarassment, calling me 'Whitney' and telling me to always wear my hair down like my namesake. I was suprised by these sudden floods of clear memories, only to realise that both of these boys were 'Rocky Balboa's' in their own right, both strong characters with a few rough edges and a focus and desire to live a good and ambitious life. Both of these boys hugely shaped my sense of self worth, they made me feel attractive, told me I was clever and beautiful and certainly made me feel that way, all at a time that my identity was really awakening. I will be forever grateful to these two men who played such a part in my young life and who built such confidence in me during my teenage years. I am of course forever grateful to Mr.Stallone too, for creating a character that I was so drawn to and for making me believe that love was all about filling gaps! I still believed that when I met that man of mine, I still believe it now seventeen years later - he fills gaps, big time!