Tuesday, 27 March 2012


It was about 4am & halfway home that my previous good cheer began to wear out. We had been celebrating my 23rd birthday in York & I believe it was more than fair to say that a good night had been had by all. In the taxi that was hurtling along in the misty darkness was my other half who was by this point in a full blown drunken stupor, as well as his good friend & my oldest friend who were politely chatting away in a light fog of alcohol, with me interjecting from the front seat from time to time.

After a little while the conversation turned to work, education & travelling. I resolved to face forward & slowed my interjections. As I listened to tales on each subject I realised that I hadn't anything of value or relevance to contribute to this conversation whatsoever. Not a fucking sausage. As I racked my brain & listened on I wondered why I felt so sad about it all. I have a beautiful family, I'm not unintelligent, so why did I feel so put out?

When I left school at 16 my plan was to get 4 A levels & on to a decent university. Entirely achievable.

When I was 18 I dropped out of college, completing only 3 AS levels at C/D grades. Though not bad grades in the scheme of things, I knew damn well that I could have done far better & that is what clinched the decision to jump ship for me. It was in ill thought out & lazy choice I had made, but all the same not the end of the world. When I found out I was pregnant 6 months later, however, that really did change things. In short, life got serious & full on & since then there has not been much room for what I need or want. As I was finally getting somewhere with my life it was all pulled from beneath me again, the business I managed was being sold in desparation, but, again it wasn't the end of the world. There were other jobs. About a month after all this, a week before my 22nd birthday, I found out that I was pregnant again. Things got full on & serious once more. Now I have two beautiful girls, a comfortable house, a partner who keeps us all secure & a mental illness. I have never been happier, yet I have never been sadder.

To say that my life has not gone according to plan is an understatement, & that is what gets me. That was why, in that taxi I had tears in my eyes & self-loathing at my core.

I often feel as though people assume I'm not intelligent because of what my life entails. People never seem to take the time to find out, to delve a little deeper. Though this often contributes to a lot of my despair, I of course realise that it's not rational to live life worrying because of other people's shortsightedness. It just doesn't help, is all.

You may be thinking that I should be thankful for having what many others don't - a beautiful healthy family & security & yes, I certainly am more than thankful & never do I want to appear ungrateful for that but what causes all these problems I have is the knowledge that I could have so much more, if only I'd have done things in a more logical order. I was reckless & made some bad decisions, but don't for one second think that I regard a teenage & unplanned pregnancy as a bad decision - just as a tough one. The achievement of raising a family coming from nothing is not something that I wish to diminish. I am very proud of myself for what I have done for my girls, however it is simply an entirely different ball park to academic & professional achievement & the experience of taking in the world.

If I'd have done thing the 'right' way around I'd have certainly done better by my children, offered them much more security & a better example - if of course the 'right' way would have allowed for children & a family - but I suppose that my job now is to give them an example & hope that it's the second best one that I can offer. I find it hard not to dwell on the past, though of course I know it will only hinder me going forward if I do. I'm just not over it yet. I am however, making solid plans & semi-selfish decisions now, that will benefit me in the long run, but hopefully benefit my girls too. The thing is getting it right. I need to be sure that what I choose to do will absolutely be achievable & that I will see it through with conviction.

I'm going back to be a student. I want a degree. That decision is made, however I am yet to work out what I'll study. I'm on the right road, anyway. I think.


  1. Anyone who reads this blog will know what an intelligent, articulate woman you are. You're 22 - of course it's not too late to go back to education if you want to. Take your time to find the right thing for you and then go for it. ( I was recently on a course with a woman who got her first degree aged 73!)

  2. Take it from another supposedly intelligent and much older woman that lives never turn out as we plan. That makes things interesting and challenging. Make sure you really want to do a degree and if you do, go for it. You have youth and wonderfulness on your side.
    Anyone who questions your intelligence which is so bloody obvious is what my darling stepdaughter would call "thick in the head"

  3. Its never to late to follow a dream. Choose careful which degree you want to do, and stick with it. Its tough, but its well worth it in the end. You seem like an intelligent person from how you write, so I am sure you will succeed.

  4. Thanks everyone, it means a lot to hear what you've said. More than a lot actually. You are all wonderful people & I feel honoured to have your advice & support. Word.

  5. From someone in a very similar position let me just say I think your great ! Your clearly intelligent and rady for a challenge go do it !


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