You’re not yourself today I noticed the improvement immediately. That’s what the fridge magnet my Dad gave to Mum says. She laughed. Years ago he gave her a mug with a picture of Jumpy the Stressed-out Dwarf on it. She laughed at that, too, all happy-sad-emotional four-foot ten of her. Laughter is the best way away from the knife rack. My mum could have given that magnet to my dad and he’d be okay with it, too.
Lately my youngest son, Stephen King Junior has been looking at me funny. ‘You okay, mum? You alright?’
I say, ‘Sure, matey.’
After a couple of days of this I asked.
‘Honey, I’m okay. What’s up?’
‘You keep smiling all the time.’
‘You seem happy.’
‘I am happy.’ I kissed his head and pushed him back onto the trampoline. He’s the best jumper, that kid.
So I’m happy, and I look different for it.
Now, I suppose I could go down the wow-how-bad-was-I road. After all, I know the drive, all the stops and turns, it’s uphill and the shoulders are crumbly. I could dwell on how sad things were, how exhausting last year was, and how much impact does a depressed mother have on her children. I mean it, man, how much?!
But it’s way nicer, possibly more productive and makes better copy to be in love with today. I am happier. It’s real. These tablets are working and I’ll be on Esipram for as long as it takes. Longer. No, there’s no need to second-guess, to worry about when feeling good will wear off. I’m living.
How do you know when you’re happy?
You dance. You sing. You laugh. Cook. Smile. Read. Watch. Listen. Be thankful. Your world opens up and ideas come fast, too fast, suddenly there aren’t enough hours in the glorious days you’re living.
There’s the second novel to finish.
The next book to plan.
The blog, gotta do the blog. I love the blog, but it’s so patient with its waiting that I don’t turn my computer on. If you’re out in the world, on your iPad, on Facebook, wherever, reading my blog, thank you.
My bike. Hilda is dusty. She’s wondering if it’s something she said. Tomorrow, Hilda, tomorrow. Me, my too-tight bike clothes and my bike, will drop down to Platypus Rock and say hello to Libby.
And I’m thinking about learning Karate.
That’s a secret. I have to get over the embarrassment off being the oldest in the class by about thirty years. I remind myself, it’s not about what other people think and that I’m always impressed when people get out of their comfort-zones, especially semi-older, female types, like me. Also, I remind myself, at some point I’ll be expected to hit somebody. I’m not sure about hitting. I haven’t hit anyone since the taxi versus the cyclist incident in 1997and on reflection, that taxi hit me. As I say, Karate, I’m looking into it.
And the boys. That kid on my bed, on my iPad, who won’t stop talking to me even though I told him twenty times that I need to do some writing today and, ‘Stop saying literally all the time and gimme a kiss.’ My bed, my rules.
‘Why?’ my middle boy looks up, ‘I’m checking my game.’
‘Not why, gimme one.’ I poke PVP with my foot.
‘Just kidding,’ he says, ‘I never miss a kiss.’ He has chocolate round his mouth and sticky, sticky lips but I kiss him anyway.
And back to singing.
This is what PVP just sang to me: your face looks beautiful it may disappear because of old age, because of old age.
Old age and a beautiful face, I can handle that. Happily.
Stephen King Junior, the little creature from the blue deep