The frown

Get up, get dressed, get some breakfast down
Hop in the car, but there is the frown
My bag is heavy and laden with books
And passers by throw me some looks
Friends are huddled together in groups
Eating crisps or snacks of hoola hoops
Chatting and laughing and goofing around
I walk right past but there is the frown
Into class and sit at the desk
Look at my hair, it’s such a mess
Teacher comes in wearing a black type of gown
Talks about history but there is the frown
Lunch time comes my tummy is glad
It’s rumbling with hunger and rumbling quite bad
Afternoon lessons, here comes the class clown
Disrupting the class but there is the frown
Home for some dinner and watch t. V
Millions of people like you and me
Millions too and some in my town
Of people in need and there is the frown
The helpless the homeless the ones with special needs
All surrounded by indulgence, hatred and greed
What of the children no bed, books or food?
Entitled they are to be in a mood.
What of the children running from bombs?
Fighting for life but we carry on,
Doing this daily routine that we know
And still the frown continues to grow
The latest gadget, or tiniest chore
Is not enough and it’s such a bore.
Look up and around then look inside
Deep in your soul and stop trying to hide
Behind the mask, the facade or the sham
And grow to be the best that you can.
There’s beauty in giving and trying to help
That is the true measure of wealth
Not what you have or what car you drive
But helping those just trying to survive
Some they are sinking and surely will drown
Reach out and remember what’s worth your frown ?

There is beauty in giving, there is joy in living. Lets make it count !

© carrie sherbourne and Relay shun sips – itsjustnoteasy.com Blog, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Carrie sherbourne and itsjustnoteasy.com Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

© carrie sherbourne and Relay shun sips – itsjustnoteasy.com Blog, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Carrie sherbourne and itsjustnoteasy.com Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Shout

Whisper to the wind your hearts desire
Look to the person you most admire
Hear the sound of the silent words
Feel the flavour of the most absurd
Dream of the beauty the thoughts can bring
Happy contentment the nightingale sing
Whisper to the wind your wishes of hope
Look for the answers needed to cope
Hear the beat of life’s gentle drum
Feel the anger that makes you numb
Dream of the faces that bring you joy
Reach out to the ocean for the lifesaving buoy
Whisper to the wind to be by your side
Look within and don’t try to hide
Hear all the tears that fall on the faces
Feel the walls of untamed places
Dream of the light that pulls you out
Don’t Whisper to the wind now you must shout !

© carrie sherbourne and Relay shun sips – itsjustnoteasy.com Blog, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Carrie sherbourne and itsjustnoteasy.com Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Love at first sight !

the beauty of love!

So, today is the day of LOVE.  That magical feeling of being loved and giving love.  New love, old love, any sort of love…. today is the day you can show it.   St. Valentines day – a celebration of romance and romantic love.  Let me tell you how I spent my day.  I woke up early to the sound of the alarm, no sorry to the sound of my husband snoring his head off and the wind howling outside as it was a very blustery and wet morning.    I showered,  dressed and slapped on a bit of make up as I had an important meeting to attend in Dublin.  Hubby got up at the last minute, as usual, and we set off on our journey, stopping mid way for diesel, coffee and a danish  pastry to have on the go.

It was only at this point, did we both realised it was indeed Valentines day.  ‘Oh Happy Valentines’ I proceeded to say to my fella ‘and the same to you, my love’ he replied and we threw each other an air kiss across the compartment of the car, well we didn’t want to crash and miss the meeting!

It got me thinking about all the people, young and (maybe) old, hoping upon hope, that someone would remember them today and send them a valentine.  A secret admirer would be fabulous and ever so mysterious.  I always felt it would be much better to have a secret admirer than to spoil the surprise by knowing whom the card was from – there would be no mystery in that.  But what when the expected card from the expected person doesn’t arrive.  Does it really mean that they don’t love you, that you are not, in fact, their valentine?   I don’t think so.  Why do so many pin their hopes and dreams on this day?  I am sure there are other days, throughout the year that they are made to feel special and loved and ‘valentined’, but this day, the 14th February, states, you must declare it TODAY!

How many disappointed, broken hearted, irritated, fuming, deal breaking relationships will falter now, if no such Valentine arrived.  No red roses, boxes of chocolate, candle lit dinners, diamonds, lingerie,  perfume, aftershave,  shirts, ties, socks…… SOCKS??? well, what do most women get men?  There does seem to be a disparity between the sexes here when it comes to present buying though, no? How many rows will there be tonight and will it be comparable to a romantic, sexy night I wonder?

How many people will feel let down,  just because someone says its Valentines day, and they don’t get a thing!  My advise, go to the shop, buy yourself a gift, chocolate, ice cream,  your favourite tipple, fresh flowers, comfy knickers, put on fresh clean pyjamas, light the fire (if you live in Ireland as its freezing)! put your feet up and watch a movie, with or without your other half (if you have one) if you don’t enjoy the peace and love yourself.  Go on you owe it to yourself.

When we came home from Dublin, after having a rather nice lunch after the meeting, there it was.  My special envelope laying on the mat.  My reminder of the day of love.  Love at first sight, sitting there on the ground peeping up at me……. my reminder letter from Specsavers telling me to make an appointment to get my eyes tested!

To all you guys and gals, Happy Valentines day and don’t worry, you have another chance, actually two in July , 6th and 30th if you missed this one……. it’s the Eastern Orthodox Church celebration of St. Valentines Day!

Cheers x

The irony of it !

to pee or not to pee…. in the nappy, on the potty. Now that is what you call proper toilet training……..NOOOOOT

I remember the days well when my girls were only little tots and I would be running around like a blue arse fly, the twins usually going in different directions, while the eldest madam would be busy occupying herself away from both of them, seeking her sanctuary!  I would be double jobbing and multitasking at the rate of speedygonzales, only to find it would all need doing again, at the speed of light.  Going to work (outside of the mad house), to the actual office, with actual adults to communicate with, was often my sanctuary.

My husband and I had a fantastic relationship. By that I mean a fantastic telephone relationship.  We were passing ships in the night you see, him working nights and me working days.  Some times he worked days too, (every six weeks, for six weeks) but he was more than often a grump at night and just wanted to watch t.v after his hard days work.   It was very hard for him, going to work and coming home to a cooked dinner, cooked by me.  Coming home to children who if not in bed, were about to be going to bed, by me, having had their bath, done by , you got it, me.  That of course, was my job, after I got in from work.   Sometimes I just wanted to scream with the tiredness as my ‘shift’ never seemed to have a ‘clocking off’ time.

I would get home from work at 5.30 but hubby dearest didn’t get home from work until 7.30, giving me a good two hours with our delightful off spring, to cook, feed, play, wash and put them to bed before settling down to…….. do the washing, drying, ironing and not to forget studying, as I was also at college, trying to get myself educated.

In those days we did not have mobile phones, just land lines and without fail, my darling hubby would ring me every day from work and tell me he loved me and missed me and would see me later.  When later came, I got the cursory kiss on the cheek,  the ‘i’m starving, what’s for dinner’ and after that he would get all nice and comfy to settle down and watch t.v  !

There was many a time I just couldn’t wait to be in my 50’s, having raised my family and spend some good quality time with my fella, while we happily watched our delightful children stepping into the big  world outside of our house for their own crazy adventures.

Fast forward 28 years………  I don’t work at the moment.   I ‘volunteer’ in a charity shop two days a week ) but that is not work (right?) just a slight hint of sarcasm there!     I still have 2 teenagers at home, so if any of you have teenagers, you can feel my pain!  I do get to spend some quality time with my fella, as he is on a much better shift,  4 days on 4 days off.  Plenty of time for us to do things together, right….. wrong!

Sometimes we are lucky if we get to have lunch together in this hectic mad house of ours.  Yes, the big ones are grown up and don’t live here in the house, but they are never far away…….  One lives around the corner, the other lives a few miles away and another lives in the UK,  but comes home frequently.   Then of course, there is always the mobile phone, and by that I mean social media, messenger,  face time etc.  There is no escaping them, and their requests for ‘help’ and ‘support’, but does it really have to be so often!

This morning I had to take severe action…….. You see,  1 of the teenagers is away with the school on a lovely trip to Prague, so of course, that doesn’t just ‘happen’, things need to be organised, which they were, by yours truly.  The other teenager has gone to visit with an aunt for a few days.  Hubby had a training course to do in work.  Two daughters, with their children  came to visit…… in fact one daughter and her son have been here ‘visiting’ for 2 weeks (in fairness she had been ill and in hospital for nearly a week, while I looked after her wonderful son).  The other daughter came with only two of her children as the other was in school.  She too was wrecked (just as I used to be when she was little)…… as any mother is with 3 small children.  He tales of woe, were very similar to my tales of woe, at her age.  I feel her pain.  But when I was actually ‘living and feeling’ that pain, I couldn’t wait to not be feeling that pain, if you get my drift.   What I am saying is, it doesn’t end, it doesn’t end because, they don’t really leave.  They keep coming back with their children (whom I adore), but sometimes, there are days, when I still want to scream!

Yes I have a nice husband, nice home and nice kids, everything I ever wanted, but is it too much to ask for some peace and quiet in my own house, with no one else in it, just occasionally?   So just as daughter with the two children said she would soon be leaving, I shot a look at the other daughter, waiting for her response that hopefully she too would be leaving….. but no, nothing, not a squeak…..   Children shouting and roaring in the back ground, t.v blaring out BLAZE  for the millionth time this week and my house beginning to look like it had been ransacked by burglars, again for the 100th time this week, washing machine squeeling as it spun it’s best, vibrating as it went, due to its over use no doubt over the last two weeks, and the dark barking at anyone or anything that moved, as he too, appeared to be going mad with the constant flow of people, big and small, in and out, up and down stairs, doors slamming, bickering, food throwing, drink spilling, toast popping……..  What could I do but the only thing left to do, I asserted my rights!!!!

‘Ok, Ok, that is it’ I began.  ‘You go get yourself and himself dressed and head off, its time now you went back to your own house and left me in peace.  I have work to do and just cannot do it with anyone in the house.  I need to hear nothing…. no  thing….. .  No children, no chatter, no t.v, nothing  I want to hear silence, I want to hear my thoughts, I want to get on with my housework, in peace, just me and the dog, in the house, doing some work, or doing nothing, if I so choose, but whatever I choose, I want to do it without you being here!    It’s a beautiful day, maybe for a walk, or go to the park but whatever,  spit spot,  off you go’!!  I finally blurted out, trying to keep my composure before the top of  my head actually did blow off!

I wouldn’t change any of them for the world, but sometimes all a girl wants to do, is to be able to to get ‘stuck in’ even if it means ‘chucking them out’.  I must let you know a great deal was in fact achieved today and the amount of rubbish I ‘chucked out’ by getting stuck in was amazing and made me feel good.  I don’t imagine that is how Cinderella felt on a daily basis, but for this Cinderella, today was a good day!

Tonight, it is just my husband and me in the house.  I cannot remember the last time it was just the two of us at night in the house.  What a treat!  To celebrate we treated ourselves to a chinese take away and himself supping on a can of lager to wash it down.  When he was finished, off with his plate he went, to the direction of the sink and duly plonked it there, BESIDE the sink for the sink fairy to wash it, while he retreated to the sitting room, yes, you got it, to watch t.v!      I eventually went in to join him, as  I have had a rather hectic day, cleaning and sorting and chucking out, only to find him blissfully snoring in the chair!

I wonder what I will be doing in another 28 years from now!

 

 

 

A friend in need is a friend in deed -Deeds not words

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I was at a meeting today,  with 2 other women and we were discussing and talking about people with Autism and how best to support them.  During the conversation it inevitably came up, not only about their potential and abilities, but also their rights.  ‘Rights’ are a thing many of us take for granted or indeed shout about, if we feel are being violated.  We use our voice, we march, we demonstrate one way or another, usually without fear, to exercise our right to ‘freedom of speech’ and to get things done.

A person with an intellectual disability, often, may not have that voice to exercise their  right to ‘freedom of speech’.  Some may not even know or be aware of their rights, and therefore need someone to ‘stand up for them’ and be their voice.  Again, we can do this without fear of repercussions.   It may take a long fight to ultimately get whatever it is we are seeking for the ‘person’, and  we may not get what we want for them at all, but we can try, and we can fight, and we can shout and be heard, even if it falls on deaf ears.

Today is the 100 year anniversary of the suffragettes victory in allowing women in Britain  the right to vote.  There were, however, conditions in that the women must be over the age of 30 to vote and well educated.  Women were not however, treated equally to men and didn’t enjoy the same rights across the board.    Thankfully, a lot has changed in that 100 years.  We have more equal voting laws, we have better discriminatory laws. Here in Ireland, we were the first country, in the world, to legalise  same sex marriage.    We don’t send women and children to the work houses.  Women, whether married or not can now work.  Up until 1973 in Ireland, married women were not allowed to work!  Children have more opportunities to go to third level education, regardless of social class or status.  Yes we certainly have come a long way since Emmeline Pankhurst chained herself to the railings, seeking rights for women, or since Emily Davison, threw herself under the Kings horse for the cause.  Emily was certainly dedicated to Pankhurst’s motto of ‘Deeds not Words’ and ultimately gave her life.

This is the the only thing that remains true, 100 years on and perhaps 1,000 years on is that  motto,  ‘Deeds not words’.  The old adage of ‘Actions speak louder than words’, whether it is a friend in need or a person who does not or cannot use their voice, don’t we have a duty advocate and demonstrate on their behalf?   By doing good deeds for the greater good, by standing by and standing up for our rights, for our fellow man, woman and child, we are honouring and continuing what those suffragettes started.  Don’t we owe it to them, to ourselves and to those who cannot speak for themselves, the right to enjoy the same rights of their fellow human being?  Like British rail, we have come along way, but still have a way to go.

I salute the bravery and tenacity of the suffragettes and I feel angry at what they had to suffer and endure in their world 100 years ago.  I thank God that I didn’t live in that world.  I shall raise a glass tonight to those women, for daring to do ‘deeds’ for all women so that they may enjoy, not just the right to vote, but for equal rights across the board.  It is now our generation of women and men who must continue to do ‘deeds’ in order to fight for the rights of any person unable to fight for their own.

Let’s not  forget  vera twomey, our own ‘suffragette’ seeking the right for her child to receive medical cannabis to improve her quality of life.  To make a difference, it starts with one voice…….. make your voice count.

Happy 100 year anniversary!

 

All in a days work?

The 9 to 5 or the 24/7 ? when do we really clock off? When is it time for a new direction?

 

 

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I never really knew what I wanted to ‘be’ when I left school and in my day, girls were really just geared to be secretaries or housewives.  There is nothing wrong with either and I have indeed, been both.  All I knew, way back then, is that I wanted to be ‘something’ and I wanted the ‘something’ to make me feel good about what I was doing, and to do what I was ‘doing’ well.

I left school at 16 because I was offered a job in an office.  I  and another girl, were recommended by our school principal, to a local plumbing contractor, as  ‘good candidates’ for the position.   After our interviews, I was offered the job and took it with both hands.  I hadn’t even had my exam results (Inter-Cert) so I figured, I must be good, as he offered me the job on my merit, rather than my qualifications.  This, indeed, made me feel good.  The year was 1981 and lots of people left school at 16 to go to work.  It wasn’t really a big deal.

I found the job quite lonely and even boring sometimes as it was just me in the office, while the boss and his apprentice were out fulfilling contracts.  I was there to answer the phone, type any letters and send out the invoices.  I was even sent to his accountants to learn about v.a.t and all other essentials needed to do the profit and loss accounts.   This wasn’t quite the idea of ‘being something’ that I had envisaged, but I had a sense of pride and took pride in my work.  I also left home and rented a bedsit nearby, so I could easily get to work.  My parents lived 7 miles from the town and our village didn’t have such a thing as a bus service.  I had no option but to move into town to get to my job.

Since that first job, I have had many many jobs both in Ireland and in the UK.  I can honestly say I have ‘drifted’ into most of them.  I first got involved in legal office work (law firm)  when I went  back to live in England, the place of my birth and home until I was 14).  I was 19 years old at this stage, and my best friend, from my childhood, got me a 2 week stint as an audio typist in the firm that she was working in.  Another secretary was going on her annual 2 week holidays and my dear friend recommended me to cover her leave.  I was terrified but excited too.  I had never done audio typing before, but it was work and I needed the money.   I lasted the two weeks and was given a good recommendation by the Solicitor that I worked for.   That was my first taste of working in a law firm and I really enjoyed it.  Years later I went on to not only work as a legal secretary but also to study and practice law.

As an adult, I have  studied a lot and changed direction a lot!  The thing is, I always need to ‘do something’.  In order to ‘fill me up’ I need to feel that I ‘am worth something’.  I need to feel that what ‘I do’ means ‘something’.  I’m not the sort of person that can just go to work and say ‘that will do’.  I have to make sure, whatever it is, that I have done my best at it, because, it matters. Right?  There has to be a value, for ourselves and for the task in hand.  It has to matter, to someone, to something, to us?

Having said that, all that we value comes at a cost and we must determine, at what cost is what we do, worth it?  Whether it be leaving our children with a childminder, to go to work so that we can put that food on the table  or take them away for a holiday.    Some people work so hard and such long hours that  ultimately it could cost them their marriage, quality free time or their mental health.  Recently in the media, what cost had actors and actresses have to pay to get to where they wanted to be?  How many other people in every other profession or industry had a high price to pay, for a days work.   In their working relationships how easy is it to Relay, Shun, Ship what we do and what we don’t want?  Of course, some of these scenarios are quite extreme, but not unlikely or unheard of.

Four years ago I was studying (yet again) for a degree, working part-time in my daughters pre-school and working part time in my salon.  I  was also (and still am) work ing 24/7 as a housewife and mother to my two remaining children at home (my foster children), and when the need arose, looked after my grand children.  Some days I would wake up, with a start, and think ‘where should I be today, the school, the salon, complete the assignment or mind one of the children’.  It was a full on busy, busy time and I was always chasing my tail.  I wasn’t now enjoying any of it and didn’t feel the value in it. I began to feel ‘that will do’ when I did something, and ‘that will do’ attitude began to  make me feel bad, so what else could I do, but change direction. I completed the degree and God knows how but, passed with flying colours.

I finally decided  to take a complete ‘year off’  from working (apart from in the home) and gave myself permission to ‘just be’ a housewife and mother.  I needed to readjust and re evaluate what it was I wanted to do.  Sure I have a new degree, but I need a job to fit in with the family, and in a social care line of work, that would be a challenge as  my other half works shifts, so that had to be factored in.  So for the last 3 years I have worked as a volunteer  twice a week in a charity shop (along side my 24/7 job).  I have been at my (grown up) children’s beck and call and my parents’ beck and call, when needed to step in and help with grandchildren/lifts/hospital appointments etc etc.

What this often translates to is ‘drop what you had planned your service is required’.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my children, grand children and parents.  I love my life (most of the time)  and I have a certain amount of freedom and flexibility in my life.   There are times though, when being the ‘beck and call girl’ is just too much.  The hours are not defined,  the structure of the day changes, the plans go out of the window and the unwanted feelings of guilt and sometimes resentment can be a burden and a heavy weight to carry.

I look, from time to time, for paid work, only part time, to fit in with the family and the other half’s shifts. It’s that constant need again, to ‘be something’, something other than the ‘beck and call girl’. The trouble with being the ‘beck and call girl’ is that feeling of being  viewed as someone who ‘doesn’t work’.  Charity work is not a ‘proper job, you don’t even get paid’ sort of scenario!  If I did get a ‘proper job’ what would they all do then?  They would of course survive and they too would find a new direction – no one is indispensable and at the end of the day, its all in a days work!