I wrote this when I was 22 years old – so cynical!
Mid-shot of a woman in her late thirties talking to an unseen companion in a café. She has dark brown hair tied back but unkempt and she lights a cigarette as she speaks. She is wearing a simple black fitted t-shirt and no make-up.
You wake up one morning and stare at that same crack in the ceiling that you’ve been staring at for years. You realise that you have had enough and that you deserve better than the shitty excuse for a life you’ve been living up to now, but you know you can’t do anything about it. Your beautiful children that you’re actually beginning to hate will be up in an hour if you’re lucky. Cartoons with horrific yet catchy theme tunes will set the tone for your day. Your husband will already have set off to work early so that he can fit the gym in. He’s left a stubble ring round the sink and a coffee mug on the side of the bath. You want to be a mother for your children but you’re a woman too. You’re a daughter, a sister, a friend, a party girl. You feel trapped, claustrophobic in these four walls, so you go shopping. For what? Where? The supermarket? You gaze into Faith for those shoes you liked or into La Senza for that two-piece you know he’d love. You don’t have the money to spend on such impractical luxuries and he doesn’t want to have sex with you anyway. You have simply become the mother of his children. Not like that hot blonde in fishnets who works downstairs in finance who would love nothing more than to pour herself all over your man. You know that she’s a slut but you also know that you’re a fat mess. You try not to care because who you are as a mother is more important; raising tomorrow’s genius, giving them the chances that you never had, encouraging them to dream their big dreams and make something of themselves. You think, ‘What’s more important than that, right?’ What the hell does it matter that your husband doesn’t want to fuck you anymore? So you get up and get out of bed. You walk to the bathroom, you brush your teeth and you look in the mirror. Your eyes are sunken from lack of sleep, your skin looks grey and your lips are cracked. The crow’s feet round your eyes are getting bigger and that grey hair you pulled out a few weeks ago has sprouted back with friends. You’re getting old, tired and weary. The realisation dawns that your dream of deep sea diving in the Great Barrier Reef in Australia is a stupid joke – you can’t even swim love! And that vision of you as a backpacking globe-trotter can be safely filed under ‘delusional’ – you’ve still got twenty years left to pay your mortgage off. You’ll feel like you want to break down and cry but you’ve got to be strong for little man and little woman. They’re knocking at the door right now, shouting for their breakfasts and they’re going to be late for school. Tears, shouts and laughter all the way in the car and you’re left standing at the gates after the bell has rung. You look down at yourself, covered in breakfast debris; you’re dressed in a fucking tracksuit and you stand there, in the middle of the street, embarrassed and ashamed of yourself and what you’ve become.