Mama’s had a day

Oh oh oh (or should that be Ho Ho Ho given the festive season is deffo upon us?) I have had a BAD day.

Compounded by the serendipitous sods law that this weekend Popeye is duty watch. Of course.

First of all- I committed a major Mum Fail. I forgot Christmas Jumper Day. This puts me squarely on Father Christmas’s naughty list. And Sweetpeas naughty list too if the meltdown she had in the playground this morning is anything to go by.

Picture the scene: It was a cool crisp morning. We were characteristically running late because Mummy had had too many Sauvignon Blancs and had stayed up to watch the election results come rolling in.

We briskly (because of the aforementioned lateness) walk across the playground and she notices that “EVERYONE IS WEARING CHRISTMAS JUMPERS MUMMY! Why have I NOT GOT MINE???”

As other parents dropped of their kids with a kiss on the cheek and a wish of “have a good day darling cherub!” My darling blessings had a meltdown, in the middle of the playground complete with loud wails of “why did you forget mummy- I TOLD you to check the newsletter!!!” (Sweetpea is 5 but has a better handle on current affairs in her world than many of the major politicians at this time).

So after chucking her at the classroom door I grabbed sproglet and we dashed back home. I found a sparkly Christmas-esque jumper, drove back and lobbed it at the unsuspecting receptionist.

“Now” thinks me “im glad that’s over…on with my day”.

I had planned to go to the garage to fix a slow puncture. It was only a 20 min wait, sproglet entertaining the other customers by trying out new cars to buy and being very excited that the map of the country on BBC news was blue- her favourite colour.

Over the polite/slightly annoyed chuckles of the other customers and vauxhall staff, I am informed that my tyre has a nail in it that has gone through to the inner bit and also it’s on the side of the tyre and therefore it cannot be repaired and I need a whole new tyre. (I have no idea what an inner tyre is or why the outside of the wheel is so vulnerable versus the middle bit but whatever).

I calmly enquire how much a new tyre will be. They reply. I think I may be having some kind of stroke. I ask them to repeat the figure. I have a mild panic as we are well skint in the run up to Christmas and we don’t have spare cash pouring out of our orifices to spoof away on tyres.

Luckily for me- I have my credit card. Strictly only to be used for Very Serious Grown Up Emergencies and definitely not to be used for any of the following:

  • Barbie Mermaid films on Amazon Prime
  • The latest series of The Handmaids Tale
  • Monthly beauty box subscription
  • Clothes
  • Emergency wine.

Even though I obviously would never EVER use my Grown Up credit card for the above- it mysteriously had drawn itself nearer its limit. I knew this, sitting in the Vauxhall garage. I felt a bit sick.

Nonetheless I knew I could use it for such an extravagance as a tyre. I pulled out my purse, to find the credit card, with hair flick and a confident smile to the garage man (no one wants the garage man to know you’re skint) aaaaand it’s gone.

Not there.

I give a high pitched slightly hysterical giggle and pull out ALL my cards. Debit card x 2, library card, national insurance card, driving licence, several old gift cards that have about £0.05 balances, zoo pass, gym pass, club card, THREE casino cards (embarrassing), my maternity exemption certificate (my kids are 3&5 years old-no idea why I still have that).

No credit card. Gone.

I turn to poor innocent Sproglet who has a penchant for being a light fingered Dickensian thief playing with mummy’s things and interrogate ask her is she’s nicked borrowed one of mummy’s special money cards. She claims innocence.

So- in front of alllllll the people there (who knew Vauxhall dealers were so busy?) we leave. We are on a quest (I tell myself)- a quest to Find The MasterCard of Destiny.

We are cast out of the warm confines of the Vauxhall dealers. Out into the cold cold winter wind.

The main problem with this quest is that it is mid December. And on the day of the quest we were running late for the school run and there was the whole evil Xmas jumper day forgetting mother drama- so we

were NOT dressed for extreme cold. We had coats over T-shirt’s. No hat scarves or gloves. It was bitterly cold. Sproglet started crying. She fell over twice during the long trek back home. All the time I was worrying about where the fuck she had hidden her thief stash accidentally left my credit card.

We (eventually, after many trials and tribulations) get home. I set her up watching CBeebies (standard). I go for a fag and swear at the sky immediately start looting methodically searching the house.

I looked ALL MORNING. It was gone. Disappeared. Vanished.

Bollocks.

So I check my banking app. Hmm several transactions from Luxembourg. I have never been to Luxembourg. In fact I probably have only ventured as far as London in the last few months. I’m not entirely sure where Luxembourg is.

This is Luxembourg. Looks lovely doesn’t it. Shame it’s filled with credit card stealing twats.

Shit.

I ring Popeye. It goes to that snooty bitch otherwise known as “Voicemail” because he’s on ship.

I leave a second “losing my mind” voicemail (the first was mid walk home when I was cold, alone panicking and ashamed- I may have also sworn at him a bit- uncalled for. My bad).

Give up on contacting my husband. Remember I’m a Navy Wife. Realise I can do this. This is nothing compared to what I’ve coped with before.

I ring the bank. I speak to a lovely lovely lovely man called Rishi (who also spoke to Sproglet who was watching Moana- Rishi apparently looks like Maui- they spent some time bonding over this whilst I was trying to sort out my life).

Disclaimer: this is in no way an accurate representation of Rishi and his amazing customer service skillz

Rishi calmed me down and sorted out my funds. Credit Card is locked.

Me and Sproglet walk back in appropriate winter attire. By this time it’s time to pick up Sweetpea from school. We get home. Popeye rings. He has not heard the manic, panicked voicemails. I fill him in.

He has the termerity to ask me “what else did you manage to get done today?”.

My head explodes.

I open the wine and blog about it.

If you’re a military spouse- you get it.

As they say in Luxembourg- Proust!

Muchos love,

Olive x

P.s- also this:

Xxxxx

Deployment dreams

Ok *oversharing alert* family and friends click away now.

Popeye has just reminded me of something that has happened every deployment and I’m wondering if it happens to you too.

Thing is, it’s a tad embarrassing.

A smidge, a pinch, a wee bit cringe inducing.

Soooo….

When your partner deploys, companionship and wholesome friendship issues aside, it leaves a big gap in your sex life. There’s a *ahem* how do I put it- a romantic need that he just *ahem* can’t fulfill because he is several thousand miles away.

We all have our own “coping mechanisms” and this post is not about that. It’s about something else that happens after a “dry spell” spanning several months.

Every time Popeye has been on deployment I have had (occasional) rude dreams.

(This, so far, is pretty normal right? Stay with me. It gets weird)

Every time Popeye has been on deployment I have had rude dreams that are not starring Popeye.

(Ok ok we’re all grown ups here, we can admit that dreaming about someone other than your partner does happen and although totes cringey and not something you mention down the phone- not exactly something entering into the realms of bizarre.)

Here it is- 

Every time Popeye has deployed I have had rude dreams about low status TV personalities. 

Not even proper slebs! These fantasy dreams have starred such well known hotties as 

  • Alan Titchmarsh


    And

    • Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall 



    Each time I’ve woken up totally and utterly freaked out and emailed Popeye in a state of utter squeamishness. 


    I don’t know why my subconscious seeks out middle aged gardeners and organic chefs as prime X rated dream stars.

    But it does. And it scares me. I don’t get my brain. When I’m awake, they do nothing for me. Sorry Al and Hugh, no offence but you’re just not my type(s). 

    Tell me I’m not the only one?

    Seriously, you guys have had freaky weird sex dreams too, right guys? Right?!

    Muchos love

    Olive x 

    Well Meaning People- Part 2

    I want to set the record straight once and for all about something that gets said to military wives frequently around homecoming time. It is usually said by our old pals Well Meaning people but can also be chucked around by randoms you meet out and about, who have all the quiet tact and discretion of HMS Queen Liz coming into Portsmouth.

    Heres the basic script:

    Military spouse: “OMGOMGOMG I CANNOT WAIT UNTIL POPEYE IS HOOOOOME!”

    Well meaning twat person: “Aww thats cute. Give it a few days and you’ll wish they were away again. Lolz”.

    Related image
    Excuse me? Wtf did you just say to me?

    Oh how we all laughed! These well meaning people, how spot on they are. How well they know what we go through. Its uncanny. Unsettling even.

    (Heavy sarcasm alert.)

    Why on gods green earth would we want them to bugger off again?

    Image result for 1950s woman pissed off
    “Im just going to file that comment under “B” for Bullshit.”

    This is what I want to say to these well meaning people (because you cant really say it to their faces, unless you’re a total cow/self confident superstar.)

    Statement of truth, from Olive, to all you Well Meaning People:

    “When the loves of our lives return to us from the sea, or the land, or the sky, from war torn countries, landscapes filled with unimaginable horrors, dangers and poor wifi, we are elated. 

    They are home safe. We can speak to them again, we can touch them again, we can smell them again (not in a creep way).

    After the initial dazzling, hazy period after homecoming fades, when all the friends and relatives have been visited, the family holiday completed, the special homecoming food and booze consumed; the return to real life commences.

    Its not glamorous, its not perfect, its not chocolates and flowers.

    Its remembering their annoying habits (leaving his toothbrush on the side of the sink), their idiosyncrasies (like letting rip with the hugest fart every morning when they wake), and their faults (cannot load the dishwasher correctly).

    Its them getting used to being at home with us again too. Its very much a two way street. We change when they’re away too. 

    We are stronger, we are more confident, we can top up the oil in the car, get two kids up and out by 8am and we can manage the family finances alone.

    It takes time to find the balance.

    Healthy, normal couples find the balance by communicating. Synonyms for this include bickering, nagging, sarcastically reminding, huffing and stropping and of course, the old classic, moaning.

    And here we come to the core of the issue-

    None of this means we want them to leave again!

    Yes they can do our heads in, and I’m sure I annoy the hell out of Popeye at times (infact I know I do, because he tells me).

    But understand, dearest Well Meaning Person, that this in NO way equates to us wanting them to leave, to having to go through a deployment again.

    What it does mean is that we, as a normal couple, are finding our way back to everyday life together, again.

    So please, when you think of your “hilarious” commentary on my relationship, kindly STFU.

    Yours in frankness,

    Olive Oyl,

    Muchos Love xxxx”

    Image result for 1950s woman husband deploying
    “I could SO go for another 9 monther right now” said no Military Spouse ever.

     

     

    Why doesnt he just GO already?!?!?

    Im going to write about a bit of a taboo subject among us navy wives. If im wrong then I am a complete cow and I really hope hubster doesnt read this. (But if Im right then I can pretend to hear all you ladies go- “thankyou finally someones saying what we’ve been thinking, hurrah!”). Let me know. If not then maybe marriage counselling is the way forward.

    I know my other two posts have been about during the deployment, but what one part no-one seems to talk about or give a flying rats arse about is the build up to the deployment. (And by “no-one” I mean many of Olive Oyls nearest and dearest, not you my lovely readers of course).

    I think the build up is one of the most intense times of the year. If like me, darling sailor is sodding off again for 6 months to save to world, after pretty much every 9 months at home, then yes, it does seem to be every year. During this time I go through what can only be described as a regression. Let me describe it for you…

    Staring.

    I will stare at Popeye with giant Bambi eyes at various times throughout the day and night. I know Im doing it. But I cant stop it. I find myself trying to memorise his eyes, toes, knees and filtrum (thats the dippy bit under your nose, get your minds out of the gutter!).

    Sometimes I make this into a game/challenge when he’s sleeping. How much can I remember in 30 seconds then put a blanket over him and test myself. Sooner or later he will notice though (read:wake up) and ask/yell at me to stop as I look creepy (apparently). In this same vein I will also take secret photos on the ipad when hes not looking/asleep.

    Mini stalking.

    I call this mini stalking as its stalking but on a small, non threatening scale. I guess I could have called it “drifting” or “shadowing”. Because no matter WHERE he is in the house I will somehow gravitate to just behind one of his shoulders. Or next to him on the sofa. Or infront of him when hes standing and shouting at the football on TV. Or when hes shaving (dangerous).

    Sighing.

    Ditto as staring (see above).

    Uncontrollable hugging.

    Now, I am a very “huggy” type person. I love hugs, I love giving them and recieving them. But when a deployment is looming im like ants over a picnic in summer. Its like im a junkie who knows her supply is gonna run out. I ambush poor husband with hugs. When hes trying (and failing-because of the above, and below) to eat his breakfast. When hes trying to put the shopping in the car, as he starts off for a jog, etc. Not cool Olive. Not cool.

    Bursting into tears.

    Basically what it says on the tin. All the time. Everywhere. With no prediction.

    Wanting to create “Special” memories.

    “Lets go for a walk and feed the ducks”. “Why dont we watch [insert romcom film hubby hates here] and snuggle on the sofa?”. “Lets go to the Zoo”. “Lets go back to the bar where we first met and re-create it”. “Lets make customised recordable talking bears for each other to have”. “Ive written you a poem, why dont you write me one too?”. “I want this evening to be special, lets have a romantic dinner”. “Let go ice skating and hold hands as we skate”. “Lets get each others names tattoed over our hearts its so romantic.”

    And then my fellow navy wives, the last few days before D Day…

    Bitch from Hell.

    Basically, all the above happens and really starts pissing off Popeye (giant suprise). So he gets grumpy, and I get snappy. Make that REALLY snappy. To the point that every tiny thing he does (clears his throat, makes a sandwich and leaves the marj out, puts all his washing in to get it clean before he leaves and not mine, he breathes too loudly, etc) starts to wind me up.

    I begin to make little “tsk, tsk” noises, that he pretends not to hear. I make them louder. I kick the bag he’s packing off the bed by “accident”. I start to slam doors and hide his ID badge. I stamp my foot and cross my arms. I mutter under my breath whilst tidying up. I crash in and out of rooms and I smoke. A lot.

    I get so irked and stressed and annoyed by his very presence, EVERYTHING he does annoys me.

    Im not sure but I think steam starts to fizz out of my ears. Im a kettle thats about to start whistling.

    And then, then I think the “bad” thought…The one I darent speak aloud, and  I feel pretty bad-ass just typing it here.

    “Why wont he just hurry up and GO????”

    ______________________

    Something completely insignificant will start it off, like him asking me to pass him some socks. Or him leaving the cap off the toothpaste again. I start screaming at him and dont want to talk to him or look at him. And then I start getting really really annoyed at myself because I know that in just a few short hours I wont have that luxury. I wont see him for ages.

    Then comes the second wave of anger:

    “I cant even be annoyed with you because youre leaving and ITS ALL YOUR FAULT!”

    Cue crying, feeling like a truely horrible person and generally chastising myself for being such an idiot.  Of course its so completely not his fault. The good thing about Popeye is that he totally gets it. Or if he doesnt he does a pretty great job of acting like he does. Which at the time just makes me feel WORSE.

    Usually we have a hug. All the while im half pulling away because I am, obviously, the spawn of the devil, and half hugging him closer. Knowing that every second is precious.

    You see its not HIM I want gone. Its that feeling of dread, of nauseau, of unreality and (after the first time) deja vue, that accompanies the build up to a deployment that I want gone. And the catch 22 is that the only way that it going to stop is when HE has to go. They’re two horrible feelings that are completely entwined and enmeshed together and at some point I and other people like me (I hope ahem), just lose it.

    The build up to deployment is a very intense time, but I hope that the fact that me and Popeye know what we’re both like helps us to laugh at each other, once Ive finished slamming cupboard doors.

    Muchos love

    Olive Oyl xxxx