I was yelled at by a stranger as me and Lilley were out walking, the other day. 'You Are The Scumbag' was what she screamed. At me…
More of the story later.
Meantime, one thing about having no one - there is no one to bother you or, indeed, be bothered about you.
I wouldn't call that an advantage, exactly. I wouldn't call it anything other than what it is - sad.
Most folk can't get their heads round having no one in the world apart from your dog. At 70 odd years of age (that's me, not the dog) it appears awfully sad.
Best to be philosophical about the whole deal. There's always a story to the tale of woe isn't there? I'll answer that - yes there is. But I don't have a lawyer present so I won't.
And thus, I’m going to ramble through the bottom of the dyke known as my mind. Like a jar of honey it gets thicker.
As an aloner, I want to talk about vulnerability. The vulnerability of an aloner, an awoc. How do we overcome it? Because the potential defencelessness of an elderly person on their own is a fact. I am that person along with many of you. A person completely alone with no one to stand their corner. No family, you see?
I keep being asked what it is we awocs, we aloners are raising awareness of. The above, of course. We are alone. There is no one to speak for us, no one to see to us, check on us, stand up for us, care for us.
Perhaps they think we're asking them to take on those roles? It's not that, don't worry. It's about them just 'knowing' we are there and alone so could you check in occasionally? Make sure we're still breathing for God's sakes. Most of us will have become self sufficient but I know how vulnerable I feel at times of illness or a particular worry. Lilley is a constant worry to me. What will happen to her if I die first? Who will have her if I get rushed into hospital? It may seem like easy decisions for most of you with families or partners but, believe me, as an alone elderly , it suddenly merges into a blur of 'help/no help'.
What worries me and others of my generation is how it will pan out in years to come. These things become normalised and it's not normal. Not normal if a large section of society feels lonely and vulnerable. Normal should be old fashioned courtesy and politeness. Wanting the best for your kids and grandkids means showing the way by your actions. Kindness. Your actions very much count so make sure those actions are doing as you would be done by.
Do as you would be done by.
An aside: Anyone ever read The Waterbabies by Charles Kingsley? Mrs Doasyouwouldbedoneby and Mrs Bedonebyasyoudid. Everyone should. Perhaps regain a moral insight into their own (and others) selves. A compulsory read in today's charge towards the normalising of immorality in all of its many dark guises.
Ahem. Sliding slowly down from my bandwagon…
'You Are The Scumbag'.
A blonde woman shouted those words to me as the car she was hanging out of shot past. To me and for me to hear. Anyone would be shocked, I think. An older person who knows they damn well aren't, is more than shocked. I was shakiing by the time we reached our destination. I did inform the local, neighbourhood police.
Oh - sorry? What was that? What happened? You have to ask? Don't be silly.
Just so you know this is 'Official' - it is NOT harrassment. Even though Lincolnshire Police website state it is. But, still, It is NOT…harrassment…apparently. For I am an elderly, smart, solvent, fully paid up British citizen. Therefore it is NOT harrassment. Now go away and bother your marigolds.
And - back in the room -
So it begs the question - is evil at work? A word reached by a long and convoluted route but reached nevertheless.
It's got me to wondering if evil is why I started this blog. Evil started this blog - blame the devil. The blonde woman was, at that moment, evil. We go back to bullying and you can give it all sorts of titles and all sorts of reasons. But by any other name it's evil.
Bullying is evil. Harrassment is evil. Bullying and harrassing an older, vulnerable person is especially evil.
You see, here's the thing - in the past I used to feel it was evil making me unable to have children. In the past that is how I have felt. It's not right, it's not fair. It's evil, God, it's evil. Put it right, please. Was it just me who prayed every night so evil would bugger off and God would allow me to become pregnant? Years ago if you’re asking. Not nowadays obviously. But yes - God allowed evil to win, in my head, at the time. We’ll make such brilliant parents, I’d plead with God.
He wasn’t listening, clearly. Of course evil didn’t win. None of us won sadly. God lost out in my opinion but hey ho.
I just wondered how or why we evaluate and dissect to the nth, life and it’s decisions. For t’was life that made our decision for us to remain childless. So is life evil? Are we spending our time fighting evil and if we swivel our eye off the main stage the devil takes up position. Was evil really blocking my route to parenthood?
On the subject but waiving slightly off piste, am I alone in feeling a mixture of affection and sodding envy when, watching Andy M at Wimbledon and it switched to his lovely wife Kim who has just had her fourth baby. I mean - how is that fair? Could she not have shared the fertility availability around a tad?
How is it fair? Folk can procreate and produce much child whilst others have to watch from centre court’s grandstand, as it were.
Yep - my 'child' right here. It's the way it is...
The devil’s having a laugh. What did I do God that was so bad we couldn’t even have kids?
Is that why I’m screamed at and called ‘a scumbag’ by the elite of this refined town?
‘She’s got no kids. She’s on her own. She’s bloody weird’.
Can you see where I’m coming from yet?
I blame Pan the God of nature. Something of a devil in his day and perverse purveyor of sexual frolics by early Christians 😂 Was it Pan preventing a womb be fertile so he’s made me communally’weird’? This is called the scenic route - so you know.
I was alright ‘til I hit mid 60s. Then I got like this. To those who never wanted kids this will be of little concern I expect. You may need to go read childless by choice .
And another thing - to distract myself from paddling in the swamp of mardy arse yet include myself in a very small way, I decided to apply to be a 'Read To Children' volunteer. Short of readers, apparently, and it sounded just the job.
The following ensured:
"What? We must go through several pages of necessary’things’ in place. What things?
I mean, I understand you need to safeguard but it’s stifling continuity and inventiveness. I'd love to help the kids and read with them. Love to.
Wait whilst we wade through six inches of references and police checks.
"But it’s online and you’ll all be there. Listen, I've got an enhanced DBS from last year's AgeUk thingy. You can have it. Won't that do?"
Because it's over six months old.
"But I'm 73 without a blot to my name. It says so on my DBS. I'll lay bets I'm not gonna start now."
You know, it’s that writing out several references, remembering where you worked, fishing out addresses. The thought of form filling…I get brain fogged.
All this whilst at the back of my mind is that creature’s words ‘scumbag’. It’s shocked the bejaysus out of me tbh.
In all of my life I have never suffered such public, verbal abuse. Not everyone likes you, not everyone likes what you say or write, not everyone thinks you're a marvellous, fabulous creature who should be on the stage. Most people don't know who the hell you are and could care less. That's how we roll and it's OK.
Because - it was meant. So who put the creature up to it?
Remember the words - 'Do as you would be done by'. Those words will reverberate down to your kids and grandkids. Life doesn't simply by pass because you're - what? Special? You're not.
You are no more special than I am and look what happened to me.
Do the right thing.
Do as you would be done by.
Thank you and goodnight. Leaving - stage right…
P. S. I’ve been sitting in my lovely, darling hairdresser’s whilst correcting some of this.
She was tending to a customer's barnet whilst I cooked like a foiled turkey. The conversation was all of the kids, the husband, the family. And I sat in my swivelley chair listening to a world I know nothing about and never will. Sad face 😔
love you Becky 💇♀️
This is a Lincolnshire wolds walk from the village of Salmonby. Most of our photos are of our 'wolds wanders'.
As you can see, this county is not all flat fenland. But let me tell you, the fenlands have the beauty of mystery and enchantment about them. Good walking to you all 🚶🏾🚶♀️💕