One rainy Irish day….

Today was the day of the great MORNING OFF. For those not familiar with this day, it’s the one day in the week when Krys takes care of Roz for the whole morning and I get to go out and party!  do some essential shopping.
The last week was a tough one. For some unknown reason – possibly delayed baby blues? – I just sat down and wept on Friday and couldn’t quite stop. I was distressed, Roz was distressed, Krys wasn’t here and by the time he got here, Roz was in bed and I was curled up on the sofa eating popcorn and refusing to speak to him. In fact, I didn’t want to speak to ANYONE. And that’s a first even for me. The weather didn’t help at all as it was damp and grey and muggy and I felt that the sky as right here pressing against my head, making it impossible for me to breathe. Aiyaiyai!
So anyway this week, I was given not only Monday, but today too as my MORNING OFF to give me a break before I broke, and to get myself started on the rehabilitation into civilised society. Yeah I’ve got work clothes but all the ladies will understand when I say I need new ones!! Everyone at work has already seen the old wardrobe and surely I deserve a fresh start? I had a baby for crying out loud! I need to show this fabulous new body I have with the rounded hips and bigger boobies and my lighter figure. Cough, cough.
Faye gave me a tip on Roz’s schedule that seems to be working better. I get up when she gets up. I do everything when she wants to do it. makes for a far easier life. May sound simple, but it was really hard. I kept trying to coax her back to sleep to give myself some more sleep, but Faye said immediately she stirs and starts looking for a feed, just get up and start the day. So today we were up at the ungodly hour of 7.18. Groan!
It’s actually what I’ve been doing all along, only I wasn’t taking it very seriously. I think the need to have the illusion of control was the problem. I want her to eat and sleep at certain times, yet I don’t want to force her to do stuff either. it’s counter intuitive for me to make her have a nap at eleven; to make her eat at one o’clock. Attachment parenting teaches that you trust and follow your baby’s cues: co-sleeping, baby led weaning, self toilet training; it’s easier in some ways, harder in others, but I’m hoping it will end up with a confident, loving and reassured baby and later, little girl. Krys’ friends in Poland are big advocates for this method and their daughter is so lovely that it can’t be all that bad. it just means our lives revolve around Roz and we don’t try to fit her into what’s more convenient for us. when you think about it. we made te decision to bring her into our lives, not the other way round so it’s only right and fair that we accommodate her needs before our own.


After leaving Krys with very loose instructions to ‘follow her cues’ (yeah, that whole attachment parenting thing, while great for the child, is crap at setting a rigid schedule for other to follow), I gave them both kisses and ran out the door to catch the bus I could already hear roaring up to the bus stop.
It was horrible day weather wise. I had on my lightest top and a t-shirt – this is because I hate taking off a thousand clothes in fitting rooms – my easytones to get a workout while I walked, and I was freezing! I mean seriously, my fingers were going pruney on the bus into town! I dropped off in Parnell Street and decided I’d be a real lazybones and catch another bus to Grafton Street instead of walking through the cold and rain for fifteen minutes. There I was standing waiting for any bus when across the street walked a group of people that were going to enjoy the summer come what may. Spaghetti strap tops, flimsy shorts, Greek style sandals, no umbrellas. I’m sure they were on drugs; no one could walk in that weather and be laughing without being slightly insane. The English couple standing beside me in their winter coats were staring with their mouths open.
So I get to Grafton Street and it’s absolutely pissing rain. I reminded myself that I was there to buy one dress, one pair of trousers, one shirt and one skirt, then go home. If I did not find what I wanted, I was to go home without compromising. I can’t even tell you the number of times I’ve tried something on and thought,
“Okay so it’s not the right colour, and I hate the cut, but with a really long top, it could look okay…” And then lived to regret it – many, many times!
So I’m in Grafton street, I open my umbrella and of course it’s the broken one I had planned to throw away last week. Honestly!! That’s how I ducked into the very first clothes shop, hoping the rain would calm down a bit while I pretended to look at the boring clothes.
I swear most of the clothes in the shop are designed to be worn by older hippy types, or by partying college girls. There I was trying not to make a face as I brushed my hand through hideous after hideous dress, top and skirt when a sales attendant, shop woman, (what do they call them these days?) came up and asked if I needed any help. It was nine-thirty in the morning, I was the only person in the shop, was she trying to wake herself up or did she really think I needed help flinging clothes aside? Of course I politely said,
“No, I’m fine.”
Before going back to my pretend search. But then, omigod! I saw the loveliest dress. It was in black and white and just looking at it, I fell in love.
I’m one of those people who hate shopping. My sister will spend five hours going from shop to shop trying on clothes and accessories and shoes and even if she only comes away with a pair of earrings, will be the happiest woman on earth. The thought of shopping depresses me. I hate looking at endless fashion trends that I know will look hideous on me, hate queuing up for fitting rooms, hate taking off all my clothes in a matchbox and struggling into clothes just to find they’re either too small or too big for me AND I look like shit in them…argh!
My sister tells me I have to develop an eye for seeing the potential of clothes. I should be able to see a dress, then imagine what shoes would go with them, and what else I have in my closet at home that will just make the outfit look fabulous on me. Well, some of us weren’t born with that gene. She always looks great in the clothes she buys but when I try to replicate the look, I tend to look as though I raided a very old, very unfashionable spinster’s wardrobe.
The one thing I have though is spotting ‘the one’. The same way I can look at a shelf of books and, judging by the cover or the title, pick out a fantastic book, I do this with clothes. Some of the best clothes I own, I’ve seen from across a crowded room and said,
Tried them on, and worn them till they practically fell off me in rags. So it was this way with this dress. I saw it, I checked the size – an eight!! Bugger! Too small – tried it on and wahey! It fit like a glove and I felt like a million bucks.
Next shop, same thing. I got a pair of jeans and was fighting my way to the fitting rooms to try it on when; at the top of the stairs was a lovely, lovely green dress that just looked fabulous on the mannequin. They had the rail right next to the mannequin, and as I selected size ten and eight to try on, a woman was also staring at the dress.
“Isn’t it gorgeous?” I gushed,
“I know, I just saw it and said I have to at least try it on!” she giggled
And like a pair of schoolgirls, we both took to the fitting rooms to try them on. The eight didn’t fit me – what the hell! –  But the ten, oh the ten! I wanted to dance out of the shop. I looked the biz! I paid for that, plus the jeans and just happened to glance at my watch. Eeeeek! It was already ten thirty but I swear I’d only just arrived in the city. I wasted a bit of time treating myself to a hot chocolate and brownie, giving myself a pat on my back for the purchases.
It was eleven fifteen when I found the skirt. And again, the shop was packed with these horrid suede skirts, rah-rah skirts, long hippie things I wouldn’t be caught dead in (seriously, who wears these things?) weird fitted hips things…shudder. But among them was a gem of a grey skirt I can see myself wearing to meetings. My sister will be proud of me when I say I can actually see me wearing my black knee highs with my white shirt with them…boring, but at least I’m starting to see it.
By the time I got home I was exhausted, hungry and it was half one. I swear I have no idea where the time went. I was missing a pair of trousers but who cares? I had two great dresses and a fab skirt and I loved all three of them. No compromises.
So I’m gushing telling Krys all about my day and asking if he wanted to see what I’d bought. Honestly, which man in his right mind, when asked,
“So, you wanna see what I bought?”
Would risk his wellbeing by saying no?
I tried on the black and white dress, waltzed into the living room, struck a pose and received the expected gasp and, 
“Wow, that looks great!”
“I know!!” I replied with no shame.
I put on the skirt and danced my way into the living room,
“And…?” I giggled.
“That’s fantastic.”
“Doesn’t my ass look great it? “ I asked. I was born with no modesty, me.  But hey, if I don’t big myself up, who will right?

I had saved my pièce de résistance for last. I positively sashayed into the room with my green dress on.

“And finally…voila!”

There was a hint of a pause and then Krys uttered another one of his iconic phrases,

“So…do you like the dress?” he said.

“Okay, never mind. “ I rolled my eyes.

“No. It’s a nice dress; just…it looks a bit like something out of star trek…”

I just stared in open mouthed horror.

“Don’t get me wrong, you look fantastic in it. Really sexy, but”

“Ah! Ah!” I ran out the room laughing.

I’d heard all I needed to hear. I look fantastic and sexy in it. All a girl needs really. And never mind the star trek quip. I’m a trekkie anyway so that’s hardly going to be an insult, now is it?

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