Thursday, 28 May 2015

Would You Marry a Genius?

Watching the film about Stephen Hawking and his wife, I got to thinking that she had a really rough deal but they met in 1963 and it was a different world then. Would any woman marry a man who had such a disease and give up so much for him now? I know she was very religious but she was also a brilliant woman and yet she married him, thinking he would soon die and having three children to him and no doubt running around like a headless chicken trying to pull it all together.
Was it because she loved him?  Well, obviously it was but how much of that love is pure self sacrifice? How much self sacrifice is good? Women are wonderful at it and not very good at making men sacrifice anything for them. How many nurses in the past would have made good doctors?  How many women had half a dozen children and wanted to help rule the world? How unfortunate that now we are still self sacrificing, we are still having those children and trying to rule the world as well and feeling that worn down mood that can become your whole life.
I know that having children is utter hell and bliss both together and having that kind of unconditional love which you get only from small children and dogs is great but the world is big and wide and a little more selfishness would not come in wrong. Be a cat. Care about you.
I was thinking also this week about Martha and Mary. It irritates the hell out of me. There Mary is sitting on her arse listening to Jesus and Martha is doing all the work and he has the audacity to tell her to sit down and shut up. I would have had him sorted out in no time.
I love the book by Colm Toibin, set from Jesus's mother's viewpoint. It's so refreshing. She can't understand what the hell is going on. Who does he think he is?  The Testament of Mary, it's called. The mother's view of her jumped up son. Sons. Hell. They bugger off and leave you or worse still they don't. I'm sure a lot of them think they're the son of God. I'm all for Martha telling Jesus that he gets to do the washing up!
Pick up your bed and walk, girls.

Friday, 15 May 2015

Don't panic, Captain Mannering!

I had a panic attack last night.  One moment I was eating a perfectly good meal, of lamb and rice, since you ask, and the next I was coughing, shaking and throwing up. I've been doing that quite a lot lately.
I used to pass out. I didn't know that I was feeling so bad about my life, that it had all become so very heavy to deal with, that my body couldn't cope any longer. I would choke, stop breathing and then slide down the wall if I could reach one in time. The passing out is such a relief except for the time when I passed out in the kitchen and banged my head off the radiator.
I  can remember sliding down the wall of a rented cottage in the middle of a thunderstorm when the lightning fired up and down the electric cables and I woke up to find my spaniel standing over me like a puzzled nurse in the hall.
I didn't know that panic attacks vary. I assumed they were all the same.
I'm going to the opera twice next week. I will take my courage and sit in the middle of the row somewhere close to the front and it's always a big test because I'm much more likely to choke and run at a live performance. I cough and can't breathe, I can't drink water, it makes it worse. I have to try and take control of my breathing, close my eyes and envisage the road between Durham and Stanhope and breathe slowly in while sticking my stomach out and then out while pulling my stomach in.
When I do this the tears stream down my face. I had to stop wearing eye make up, it ended up all over my wet cheeks.  If the attack is really bad I have to get up and run out, which is why I sit in the middle of the row because if I bolt I've disturbed everybody, made a spectacle of myself and lost that evening's battle. And if I run out it makes the next occasion so much harder.
Worst of all is having a panic attack at home. Most people feel safe in their houses. That's Crawl Into Bed Time, the only good thing about it being that it might happen on a sunny afternoon, the bed all light and warm. That's my idea of safety and then I listen to my audio books and remember how to breathe again.