It’s getting to that time of that year (yes once a year only) when I really need to get away from being someone’s somebody. I need to go and be me and nothing but me for a while. Selfish? Hardly. That’s the thing when you have children they absorb every last drop of selfishness in your living breathing corpse, so that you become a shadow of your former single self. Up until you  have children, you are still single as far as I’m concerned even if you are in a committed relationship. You can afford to be selfish and take off at a moment’s notice, or pull a sickie from work. Parenthood, particularly motherhood does not allow you to do that, and if like me you don’t have the support of family and friends around you to baby-sit the children regularly, then you’re a bit stuffed. Beholden to being the perpetual performing monkey. It wears thin, believe me. I don’t have to qualify my burgeoning atavism with, “I do love my children though”, because I do vaguely remember having a life before selling my soul to parenthood.

Small People

There is a point that the selfishness comes creeping back in, and all I desire is to be able to sit at a table on a terrace somewhere with a beer in my hand, and nothing better to do than zone out watching the world go by, preferably in the sun. Sounds like such a cliché doesn’t it? Believe me clichés are good my friends when the likelihood of hell freezing over becomes a salient option.

Last year my time away was spent exploring the cities of Florence and Venice all by my wonderful self, which was a bit of a coup really as it had been a dream of mine since I was 14, and almost 25 years later I had the opportunity to go. Except that I spent my week away feeling very unwell, high as a kite because of the fever that was coming and going in waves inside my body, not being able to eat properly, or enjoy that much dreamt of beer on a sunny terrace somewhere, and generally being in god-awful pain.

I spent my 38th birthday in Venice feeling like I was dying. It was shit. I returned home that day, and the following day I was straight into the emergency room followed by a week in hospital being prodded, poked, tested, injected, scanned, and drugged up to the eyeballs. I did get a lot of sleep though, which is something else I’m forever complaining about. I came out the other side feeling strangely calm, rested, slightly more sane despite having had my holiday ruined by low functioning bowels and a body temperature hot enough to cook an egg. My altered state of awareness certainly gave me a very unique appreciation of both cities though. I remember sitting on the terrace at the Peggy Guggenheim museum overlooking Venice’s Grand Canal and crying uncontrollably at the beauty of it Venice,  Accademia Bridgeall, like I was having my own personal epiphany. However, I put it down to partial delirium too.

Thankfully my youngest is almost at an age when he will soon be attending pre-school at least in the mornings, so I’ll have a tiny window of time that I can call my own. However, I realise that soon I will have to enrol for my next course with the Open University if I want to complete my degree in the allotted time (before 2017). It means that this summer will be my last and final opportunity to have a proper break away before I sign whatever is left of my soul away to intense study as well as doing everything else I already do on a daily basis. Shoot me now! Please….

I know how you feel mate...
I know how you feel mate…

17 thoughts on “Burgeoning Atavism

  1. I ran out of bullets just when I was about to fire :). It must be a good thing to just go for a holiday alone though I know of most people who dread being alone on trips


    1. Damn, no bullets?! Oh well…
      It is a great thing to travel alone, I have done it a lot in the past. There isn’t anyone to answer to, no need to get out of bed unless I want to, and I can eat when and wherever I like – when you have a family all of this goes out of the window!
      It is a necessity therefore for me to go away by myself, just so I can remember what it’s like to be me again 🙂


  2. I was just going to go back to Venice for a few days, but the Chilean Andes sound interesting. Maybe I’ll swing by Cape Canaveral and ask really nicely if they could shoot me into space in a rocket so that I can get a closer look?


  3. traveling sick is the worst. I ended up in Hawaii one time by myself in a condo for 10 days, both my friends had to bail due to work…so I went anyway. Snorkled all day long, went on a night dive with Manta Rays, it was glorious! I recommend traveling alone…its so peaceful. No worries, do what you want…I met lots of super nice Hawaiians…I’ll probably head to Europe one day, or maybe Jerusalem alone…I can’t wait! But if I were you…I’d slow down a bit, you seem way busy…and 7 days a year to find yourself isn’t much! 🙂


    1. Sounds like you had a great time in Hawaii. You can’t slow down when you have three fairly young children, nobody is there to give me a break. And the only way for me to disconnect completely is by the leaving the country for a few days in a year. If I had more money it would be easier, but I’m like everybody else in the UK, barely getting by. Holidays and time off are a luxury. Like I said in my post, you’re single, therefore free up until you have children.
      Have a great day, and thanks for your input Shards, it’s always appreciated 🙂


      1. I feel for ya, been there and did that with my two boys. It’s SO hard when your a single parent! but hey, EVENTUALLY they do leave home! lol course sometimes they come back…lol good luck, and have a great day too!!


    1. No I haven’t yet. I have to wait until August when my partner can get time off work. Still haven’t decided where to go yet, I was going to go to Venice, Italy with a friend for a few days, but I think she may bail on me so it’s just going to be me by myself again. Not that I mind too much 🙂


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