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Beauty and the Mum

I remember a time when Eliza had just been born and I was so desperately sleep deprived (something I am now, clearly, used to) that when I looked in the mirror I physically recoiled.  I look as if I had been dug up, slapped round the face and then thrown back in the hole in the ground.  Bloody awful.  The bags under my eyes were steely grey, my face was steely grey, my hair was rapidly turning steely grey.

But I did I care?

Well no, not really. I was spending approximately 2 seconds each day to scrape my (greying) hair back off my (grey) face.  I was so overweight I couldn’t even dress in normal clothes I was still sporting materntiy jeans and baggy tops, but even they were tight.  Yes my friends it was a deseperate time in terms of beauty.   I remember on one of those dark days going to my local Boots and thinking “if I can’t solve the sleep deprivation then maybe I can solve the bags” and I treated myself to a Clarins eye cream.  It was the only beauty purchase I made for about 3 years.

However.  Something rather odd has happened to me over the past six months or so.  With the advent of rediscovering who I actually am, making some proactive decisions about my work life balance, making some choices about what I want to do with my time, I have started to once again care.  Care about me.  About how I look, how I feel and how I can fit into a nice pair of jeans. Of course that is heavily weighted with the on-going care of my family but that’s a given right? And anyway this post is about me me me.
This has been something of revelation.  I’ve lost the baby weight and this has given me a new kind of confidence in myself.  It’s not just about weight though is it? Anyone who’s had a baby, then another 18 months later will tell you it’s about a whole bunch of things that happen deep down in your very soul. You lose yourself, you can’t remember what you actually liked to read after so long reading The Snail and the Whale, you think you used to be able to stay up later than 10pm but you’re not sure. Then you emerge from the fug and start to remember what you did before children.  I’ve remembered I used to listen to music (not just Tin Pan Annie or Fruity Tunes), I’ve remembered I used to enjoy going out with my friends more than just once every 6 months.  I’ve remembered that I quite like clothes, I like make up and I like shoes.

And so this is now the problem.  I have been working in central London freelancing in a rather lovely agency.  The people are brilliant, the job is challenging, even the commute feels do-able on a less regular basis, so what’s my problem?  The location.  I am wham bam in the middle of one of the most alluring shopping areas in London.  This is not good for the health of our family finances but bloody marvellous for my re-introduction to the world of being a functioning human being.



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