There are those that say that guilt is a useless emotion, and maybe they’re right.  But I feel it so often that I can scarcely imagine a life without it.

How would I fill the endless minutes in each day if not consumed by the feeling that I’m not doing the right thing/a good enough job, that I myself am not good enough, that I could/should be doing x, y or z instead?!

Take right now for example- I’m sitting here feeling tremendously guilty about an inordinate number of things.


First up- there’s the pie.  I’m eating the last mince pie in the house and feeling guilty (because I am trying to be healthy and lose weight and eating a mince pie is in direct contradiction with both of those things).

Also, there’s the sitting.  I’m sitting here eating a pie when I could/should be doing a whole host of other more useful and productive things (tidying, cleaning, writing, calling up the ward manager at my new job and introducing myself and getting some off-duty etc etc etc).

Then there’s the fact that I’m alone, having just dropped both kids off at school.  Which carries it’s own guilt at the best of times, but particularly when I’ve just had to prise our 6 year old off my leg in tears and leave him with his teacher sobbing.  He was off sick yesterday but is better today but didn’t want to go in, and being the horrible mother I am, I made him.  Because we had to go there anyway to drop his brother off (more guilt there- his brother started full-time school a whole year earlier than he did, and although his attendance technically isn’t compulsory, because he’s still only four, I tell him that it is) and because he isn’t poorly anymore, and I don’t want him to have poor attendance/miss out on stuff, and because I don’t want him to think he can stay home whenever he doesn’t fancy school because he really can’t because I start work next week (heaps more guilt at this point, because I am not going to be able to do school drop-offs/pick-ups and will miss some bedtimes and generally won’t be around as much).

I’m also feeling very guilty about starting my new job because I am riddled with doubt that it is the right thing to do/the right time to do it, and then I feel bad for having taken the leap despite my doubts, and I also feel bad because I have been given a job, something a lot of people would kill for, and here I am debating about whether or not I really want it.  And then I feel guilty for feeling this way, because when all is said and done, it’s not a matter of wanting the job or not- I need to earn money.

And then I get back to the fact that I’m sat on my arse not contributing financially, emotionally, or practically to anybody or anything, and by that point I’ve eaten the pie and we’re back to my food-related guilt once again…

Congratulations, you just survived ten minutes in my brain!  Exhausting isn’t it?!



2015 Reading Roundup

Well, 2015 is behind us and therefore so is my 2015 reading challenge, which was to re-read 12 of my favourite books and blog about the experience of reading them again (for what in some cases was the second, and in others the hundredth, time).

The books were-

  1. The Stand by Stephen King
  2. The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
  3. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  4. The Outcast by Sadie Jones
  5. The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney
  6. The House of Sleep by Jonathan Coe
  7. The Spider Truces by Tom Connolly
  8. Let The Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist
  9. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
  10. Fingersmith by Sarah Waters
  11. When God Was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman
  12. 1984 by George Orwell

As you can see, I only managed to blog about 7 of the 12, although I did also re-read Miss Peregrine and Fingersmith, I just didn’t get round to sharing my thoughts on them (which if anyone is wondering is basically “I LOVE THIS BOOK, GO AND READ IT NOW!”- in both cases)

I did re-read quite a few other books though, which weren’t on the initial list of twelve.  In fact, of the 47 books I read this year, a whopping 26 of them were ones I had read before.  17 were new books, and then there were 4 that for various reasons I didn’t finish (in one case because I just wasn’t enjoying it, and in the other 3 it was more because I wasn’t quite in the right mood or headspace) and I’ll probably revisit those at some point in 2016.

Of the 17 that were new to me that I actually did finish- some that really stand out that may be new favourites are The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan, which was just fucking wow, and had the curious side-effect of causing my inner monologue to have a thick Scottish accent for about three weeks after finishing it.  Also Chicken by Chase Night which I downloaded to my Kindle on a whim and then basically couldn’t put down until I’d finished.  I also finally got round to reading the Shiver trilogy by Maggie Steifvater, which I’ve been hesitant to do despite having owned the books since 2011, because I got them as a fancy set and they looked too nice for me to actually read.  Finally curiosity won out though and they’re now back in their slipcase, with very creased spines, because I remembered that I actually love reading more than I love books.  And yes, they were worth the wait.  Also, I can’t possibly write about brilliant books I read in 2015 without mentioning The Infernal Devices trilogy by Cassandra Clare, which I enjoyed so much I may have read all three twice…(!)

For 2016 I have a whole new challenge in mind, which I’ll post about separately.  But aside from that I’m just looking forward to reading plenty and hopefully discovering some amazing new authors and stories 🙂