Thursday, 28 February 2013

Turning 30

I am currently hurtling full tilt, at warp speed, into my first cliche and I am kind of mad about it and yet at the same time powerless to stop it.

I try, and I think am fairly successful, to avoid being a cliche and really try to live my life how I wish to live it and not bow to external pressures (see how I cope with being in a long distance relationship for an example) but at the moment I am failing.

I am freaking out about turning 30.

I know it's ridiculous and I know it's silly and what's even worse is I know what's causing it - which should, in theory, mean I should be able to stop freaking out about it, but that appears to be one of those easier said than done things.

For me it is a scary age. It's my first big milestone and one where everyone else who is reaching it are at varying stages of their lives. The last big milestone birthday was 21 and, by and large, everyone who turned 21 with me was the same - still at uni, still ensconced in the student lifestyle, still convinced we were invincible and the world was ours for the taking, no responsibilities and few ties, all the time thinking that all that big Life Stuff would be sorted out by the time the next big birthday came around.

I noticed the divergences hit around the 25/26 mark. People started moving in with boyfriends. People started getting engaged. People started buying houses.

I did none of this and wasn't particularly fussed - I still had a kind of blind faith, based on absolutely nothing, that when I was 30 things would be 'sorted'.

I'm never entirely sure what 'sorted' in my head meant, but I believe it meant that at least one out of the following four things would have been achieved;
1. Own house
2. Fiance/husband
3. Child
4. Career

The years have gone on and with every wedding attended and every baby blanket made and every Welcome to your New Home card sent, a very slow but steady sense of disquiet has been growing in the pit of my stomach. Once 30 came within 6 months the panic has been relentlessly encroaching and growing and now, with 5 weeks to go, I feel like I'm at Defcon 2.

So let us see where I am according to the list above;

1. Own house - bar an unknown relative bequeathing money to me on their death or a Lottery win I have now pretty much accepted that I will never own a house. I'm pretty ok with that. However, at the moment I don't even rent a house. I don't really rent a room in a shared house. I live in my sister's box-room. This is not where I thought I would be at 30. I don't think this is where anyone aims to be at 30.

2. Fiance/husband - I have a lovely boyfriend, I'll concede this one, but at the moment I'm closer to landing on the moon than I am to getting a ring on my finger.

3. Child - I can't lie, this is the one that I find the hardest to deal with and I know it really does take me into the realm of cliche-dom. But I really did think I'd have a child by now. What really smarts is that if I were a less responsible person, I could have a baby now - but I don't believe I'm in the right situation to bring up a child how I would like to. And yes I know there's no perfect time to have a child but when you take Point 1 into consideration along with Point 4 coming up, and then throw in that The Person is in now way ready to have a child yet, I think we can all agree that this is not a good time to start spawning.

4. Career - I have been in my new job for 2 months. Instead of having been in one for 9 years, like those who left uni and started on their career path straight away. I am unbelievably grateful to just have a job and am even more so that I am enjoying it - but I didn't think I'd be at the bottom of the ladder at 30.

So there you have it. The reason I am desperate to hide my head under my pillow for the next 5 weeks and pretend it isn't happening. Also the reason I'm not choking at the bit to "celebrate". (Not helped by the fact I have discovered some "friends" are planning a trip away for their 30th birthdays to which I haven't been invited. Niiiiiiice.)

And oh my goodness I am well aware that I am being ridiculous. I am well aware I should be grateful for what I've got. I am well aware that I shouldn't be upset that my life isn't where I thought it would be when I was 21, a point in my life where I was incapable of thinking beyond the next Sambuca, much less forming a coherent life plan. I am even well aware that the 4 things on that list do not indicate how "successful" I've been at life.

However. The older we get, the harder it is to ignore the disparities between our life-path and those of the people around us which will almost inevitably lead us to question whether we're doing the "right" thing. And even if there is no such thing as "right", I believe that we, are at least some of us, are pack animals and are happiest fitting in with everyone else. I think I could accept not having achieved some of the things on that list if I had done something extraordinary with my life, but I haven't even done that - maybe that is what is most upsetting of all.

I am working on readjusting my thinking. Obviously I know 30 is still young (although my ovaries may disagree), however until I manage to do that, I reserve the right to carry on being a cliche and freak the freak out about turning 30.

(If you are tempted to leave me a comment saying I should be thankful I don't have the stress of mortgage payments or the horror of a baby who won't sleep at night, or the nightmare of planning of wedding - don't. For I would hate to have the inconvenience of going round to punch you in the face.)

Monday, 25 February 2013

The beginnings of an idea.

I am not a creative person.

I can do crafty things, following a chart or a pattern, or adapting something someone else has created, but on the whole, I'm not an ideas person.

My brain just isn't hardwired to come up with original ideas....until now.

As per my Not Really Resolution to make an Elmer blanket a la Little Tin Bird, I've been steadily plugging away, building up my squares. It's been a good blanket to do for my current situation - space is limited for me at the moment as I'm in my sister's box-room, so I've been bringing a ball of yarn back from Preston and hooking up 20-odd squares before bringing back another.

It has become apparent this has the potential to be a pretty big blanket, and that makes me all kinds of excited.

Yesterday, once back at my sister's, I decided to see where I was in terms of numbers and how it was looking, so I just threw all my squares into lines to see where I was. This actually prompted a bit of a breakdown because all my colours look a bit mental at the moment because I've only done a few balls of wool. In the midst of flurry of e-mails to Heather freaking out about my inability to do anything right (who needs Call the Midwife when you have me around for a Sunday drama?) I had my first ever genuine strike of inspiration.

The blocks of colours all interlocking together - what did it remind me of?

(Don't mind the bad photo, or the weird colours - this was just a practice!)


I do not do computer games. I lack both the coordination and the mental stamina for anything stressful. But me and Tetris? We go way back. I am bloody brilliant at that game. I didn't have a game console growing up so my exposure to games was limited to my Dad's PC. Yeah I played Lemmings and yeah I played Sim City, but all I really wanted to play was Tetris. Whole days during the holidays would be spent playing Tetris, ringing friends to share our latest high scores. It is a game I now avoid because if I start playing it, I genuinely find it difficult to stop.

It seems only right that I should make a blanket en homage to my favourite game.

Really crochet was made for Tetris (or the other way round?). Those little Tetronimos are begging to be crocheted together in a tessellation of awesomeness.

Once the idea was in my head it became all I could think about - all day I've had to push thoughts of falling shapes out of my head whilst the theme tune has played on a loop.

As soon as I could, I sat down to plan my baby out - and let me tell you, it was harder than I thought. When you're playing Tetris it doesn't really matter if you place 2 blocks of the same colour together, different matter in crochet-land. I also started by fitting everything together perfectly until I realised that would never do. Obviously once you've made a line in Tetris, it disappears, there's no space for inaccurate crochet thank you very much.

This means I was going to have to have at least one black square on each line and that was actually harder for me to do than it sounds. It basically leaves you with a Tetris blanket of a game that is basically bad - this blanket is not going to represent how you should play Tetris - that pains me a little if I'm honest.

So I did some experimenting and I've come up with 2 proposed layouts.

Layout 1

Layout 2

Layout 1 is the first I worked out and Layout 2 I thought was interesting because it shows the final piece falling into place to score the ultimate prize - a Tetris.

At the moment I'm leaning towards Layout 1 - but I welcome a voting situation here, please feel free to cast your vote.

The border isn't permanent - that was just me having a play. Also the colours won't be totally accurate in terms of the shades.

It has been a thrilling 24 hours since the idea came to me. I have so far avoided Googling Tetris Crochet because I know I won't be the first to have had the idea and there's probably much better out there. For now I'm living off the buzz of my very first experience of creativity. My one and only burst of inspiration that I can truly call my own.

What a thrilling life creative people must lead - this is a high I don't ever want to go away.

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Crazy Cat Lady Part 24: I can like dogs too.

Although I do have to deal with the daily pain of living with a cat that doesn't return my love, there is something that pretty much makes up for it.

In fact, there's two somethings.

Everyone meet, Rowan,

and Rosie.

In case you're not up to scratch on your dog breeds, Rowan & Rosie are Irish Setters, a slightly more mad breed when it comes to dogs.

Rowan is getting on a wee bit now, she's a stately lady and quite happy to sleep most of the day. She is also my bezzie. I was around at my sister's quite a bit when they first got Rowan, (in fact I was there the day she was brought home) so she knows me of old. She's always got extra excited when I come to visit and now  that I live here, I'm not going to lie, she pretty much loves it a lot.

She likes to be with me as much as possible, which is lovely, especially coming as a direct contrast to Blinky's deliberate aloofness to my general presence. And whereas Blinky only deigns to come on my bed when she thinks I'm asleep, Rowan will take any chance she can take to lie on it. Which would be fine if it wasn't for the fact that I live in the box room, with a single bed, and she is kind of a massive dog.

I'm too much of a softy though and rather than kick her off, I try and fit myself around her somehow which can lead to situations like this photo - which I took at 4.20am one day the other week...

For those who wanted to know, I fit in on my side along the wall

I try to not let it happen too often, although I can sleep anywhere and anyhow it doesn't make for an amazing night's sleep - but all too often I wake up with an extra body in the bed, with my arm around her and her head on my pillow.

Rosie is still a puppy. And oh how she is a puppy. She is a one puppy destroying machine. She will chew and eat anything and everything left within reach - which, even when you're a puppy - is pretty high up for an Irish Setter. She has plenty of toys, she has all the toys in the world, and these are all destroyed too - many a time you come downstairs to a room filled with toy stuffing whilst Rosie chews and bites and guts her latest toy. 

She also likes plastic bottles, cans and the other day ate a tube of lip gloss.

In short, she's fairly stupid, as the picture below demonstrates...

Her one enjoyment in life is tormenting Rowan senseless. She may be a puppy but she is Little Miss Dominant and although we do our best to leave them to it, sometimes you have to intervene just to give Rowan a moment's peace.

There is something rather wonderful about being greeted as warmly as Rowan and Rosie do whenever I come in from work/walk down the stairs/come out of the toilet and although I still love cats for their true independence it's nice to have the best of both worlds.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

When baking goes wrong

So often on blogs I see beautiful pictures of beautiful things - sunsets, children, crafty output, baking - the list is endless.

I am here to buck this trend.

Let me tell you a little story that may make you feel better and realise that everyone in the blogosphere is not a perfect human being, living in a Cath Kidston quilted world with bluebirds putting up my perfectly coiffed hair whilst I embroider with silk.

I decided for one of my Not Really Resolutions this year that I would bake once a month because I miss baking. (It's once a month because my hips do not need me to bake more frequently) In February I decided I would try something a little different and attempt to make some Cookie Monster fairy cakes that I've seen hanging about on the interwebs for some time now.

Everything went very smoothly at first which gave me a false sense of security. The Person's oven has a mind of its own and baking in it should only be taken on at your own risk but, by some miracle, I had 12 happy little fairy cakes all ready to be decorated with blue icing, cookies and marshmallows.


"Turn icing blue" should be a simple enough task but I, in a feat which only I could be capable of, managed to cock it up. All I wanted was for my icing to turn a nice bright blue colour and logic told me that I should add more food colouring until it happened. But at some point, when my icing was refusing to turn any brighter than a powder blue no matter how many extra drops I added, this logic was replaced by a crazed obsession which flew in the face of reality and before I knew it, I'd used a whole bottle of food colouring without effecting any change in the colour of the icing.

So I think we can basically call this a fail. The Cookie Monster is supposed to be bright frigging blue, but instead mine were going to look like the Cookie Monster had gone 10 rounds with a bottle of bleach.

There can be no disappointment greater than that of someone whose baking has gone wrong. All that stupid time and effort (not to mention money) and nothing very impressive to show for it. It's gutting.

But I had started and I was bloody well going to finish.

I tried to do fancy piping to make it look like fur but guess what? I can't do that either so I just slapped the icing on any old way and decided that would do. I soldiered on with my decorating until I hit the next stumbling block which came in the form of a lack of white marshmallows (I could only find bags of pink and white ones!) meaning that half my Cookie Monsters looked like they were battling a case of pink eye.

So let us recap my baking adventure:
1. Icing didn't turn blue
2. Fancy piping to look like fur didn't work
3. Ran out of white marshmallows

Don't be jealous of my life bloggers.

And so I challenge you to put up pictures of your shit baking, your crap crochet and your blurry sunsets. For we shall represent what is real and make others feel better about themselves.

Artistic representation of the colour that I wanted my icing to go


PS I took to Twitter to lament my icing woes and the consensus is that gel colouring/paste is the way forward if I want bright colours. Noted although I don't know I have the internal strength needed to face doing this again.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Tea - the human leveller

Last week I caught the train to Preston to see The Person for the weekend. This involves a change at Stafford which gives me just enough time to go and buy a cup of tea and wander back to my platform in time for my train. This particular Friday my train was delayed by 10 minutes, and to escape from the freezing cold I took refuge in a tiny little waiting room on my platform.

In my haste to get in from the cold and not spill my tea all over myself or drop my work laptop on the floor I didn't really register what else was happening, and it wasn't until I sat down that I realised the waiting room was unusually crowded...and there was a tripod with a camera on it...and they all had little notebooks...

I had unwittingly walked straight into a nest of Transpotters. (I have no idea what the collective is for a group of Trainspotters - any suggestions?)

I recognised this for the opportunity it was - the chance for an anthropological adventure, observing a little known species in their natural habitat. And so I settled down, pulling my own notebook out in order to note down my observations.

A few things which stood out;

1. Their enthusiasm for trains was actually quite nice to watch - these people are genuinely excited by trains. Conversations would be interrupted mid-flow as they dashed up to see a train which was zooming through the station to write the number down.

2. I will never, even if I live to be 100, hear a funnier phrase than the following;

" God, look at the wagons on that tonight!"

I kid you not. If I was to try and make something up it wouldn't be that funny. I couldn't dream of it.

3. Coal wagons are not cool, with one guy commenting "I've not come here for coal wagons" with another replying "I don't even note them down." 

Poor coal wagons.

All in all it was a most interesting 20 minutes spent in the world of trainspotting. I was torn between not wanting my train to get there because I was listening to pure gold and being desperate for it to turn up because I needed to laugh. Badly needed to laugh. (When I did get on my train and rang my Mum to tell her about my adventure pure hysteria took over until the tears were rolling down my face.)

Eventually though my train arrived and I regretfully left them to it. Don't feel bad for them though, they were in for a good evening - as I left I heard the immortal words....

"Cars, then mail, then cup of tea."

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Not Really Resolutions 2013

Yeah I know. It's past the middle of February. What can I say?

Nothing actually.

Let us pretend that this is the 1st January and I'm an excellent blogger who has not only thought of her Not Really Resolutions beforehand, but has also scheduled a post to go live right at the moment the New Year hits.

Now if there's one thing that 2012 taught me, it's that life can get derailed pretty quickly and the best laid plans can get thrown out of the window. With that in mind I could have just cancelled my Not Really Resolutions this year and laid low but that is just not my way.

Plus I really really like lists.

And so may I present to you: The Not Really Resolutions 2013

1. Get behind the wheel of a car again.
I talk a lot about the fact that I don't drive and it's silly really because technically technically I can drive. I passed my test the very 1st time when I was 17 years old. Unfortunately that was also the last time I was behind the wheel of a car. Yep, that would be almost 13 years ago. I would most definitely not say that I am in a position to take a car out on the road.

People always pull faces and go "Ohmygod that's crazy" and then I make them feel bad by pointing out that when I passed my test I was living with my Mum who could not afford to insure me on her car and wasn't speaking to my Dad so there was nothing doing that side. Then I went to uni in Manchester where a car was never needed because there are approximately 20,000 buses a minute down Oxford Road. Then I was too poor to afford a car and have remained the same ever since.

The fact is it's never been that inconvenient that I didn't own a car, mostly because I've lived in big enough cities with a decent public transport system. However, now I'm living in the back of beyond it's a big deal that I don't have a car and means I'm pretty housebound without one. Sucky suck suck.

SO. This year I will get behind the wheel of a car again, get refresher lessons so that I can at least hire a car, if not get my own.

The first step needs to be renewing my license, which hilariously expired once it was 10 years old having never been used other than a form of ID. Brilliant.

2. Project 365
I really enjoyed Project 365 when I did it in 2011. It did inspire me to attempt to keep a real life in diary in 2012, but unfortunately that was one of the Not Really Resolutions that didn't get done last year. So I've decided to do it again this year - and it's going well so far. Especially considering that all I do is work and then come home and sleep.

Don't expect good photography skills.

Do expect a lot of pictures of cats and dogs.

I know that basically no-one uses Flickr anymore but in the absence of anywhere else to put my photos they are on my photostream where you can also find my photos from 2011.

3. Read 12 Classics.
I don't even feel bad this is on here for the 3rd year running. It was the best idea I've ever had and means that I challenge myself when it comes to my reading.

Plus, I don't think I'll ever run out of Classics to read.

4. Crochet me up an Elmer blanket a la Little Tin Bird
I could come up with an idea myself for a blanket. Or. I could just steal one that's already been done.

I vote for stealing every time.

Ever since I saw this blanket way back in February 2012 I have felt an overwhelming urge to do one for myself. In fact I even made a start before I inexplicably dropped crocheting and started cross-stitching as if my life depended on it for the whole of the year. This will be the year I make it.

It's quite a good one as well because at the moment I am separated from all my crafty things which remain in Preston (sob) but I have space for one ball of wool and a crochet hook, so I can bring a ball of wool back from my weekends in Preston and then sit and make a load of squares here, before returning for more wool.

5. Learn to knit
I have a strange knitting phobia and I'm not entirely sure why. I think it's because I have memories of very stressful weekends where my Mum would try and teach me and then announce that it was impossible because I was left handed. I hate that, left handed people are always told we can't do stuff - fuck you right handers.

Last year I went to a Sit and Knit workshop that was part of an arts festival in Preston and I totally did knit something! Kind of. Ok, it was a shapeless blob, but I definitely was getting a knack for it.

My thing. It was cool, we hung them in the trees as a little yarn bombing thing. Funzone.

Also it turns out I knit right handed which would probably have saved my Mum a lot of stress.

6. Bake once a month
I miss baking. I used to right love it and then I just stopped. I'm going to start again.

That was a good story wasn't it?

7. Go abroad
I haven't been on a proper be abroad, sit on the beach and get cancer holiday since I was 18. 18 I tell you. This is wrong. All wrong. The last time I went abroad was in 2010 when I went to my Dad's house in France. The Person has never been on an abroad holiday ever the poor soul. At the beginning of 2012 we said we were definitely definitely going away. I don't know what happened to that....oh yes, I was made redundant. No holiday. 2013 is going to be the year I go to a place that involves crossing the water that surrounds this island.

8. Makeover my chest of drawers.
Last year I was supposed to make over 2 pieces of furniture but only managed to do one. The chest of drawers from the charity shop remains looking like a chest of drawers from a charity shop. But I do that the stuff for making it over which is one hurdle cleared.

The other hurdle is that it lives in Preston and I don't. We'll figure that out hopefully.

9. Cross stitch a big picture/item just for me.
As you may know, 2012 was the Year of the Needle & Thread and I got my cross stitch on good and proper. This included doing cards which is all well and good but I also did a couple of bigger pictures as presents for people. I'm a selfish gal I want something for myself thank you very much. So this year I'm going to be a selfish stitcher at some point and make something that's mine, all mine.

10. Only buy 12 books all year
Last year I wasn't allowed to buy any books, and believe it or not I actually did it. This was good because my bookshelf of to be read books was not good and a little crazy and I managed to make a dent in it. However, it is far from being empty. In fact it doesn't look like I've made a dent in it at all, I don't know how that happened...

Anyway. I couldn't ban myself for another year for that would be cruel. So instead I'm imposing a limit. I initially said one a month but I know buying 1 book at a time is basically impossible for me so I'm averaging it out and saying 12 books altogether. This is good as it's only February and I've already bought 3.

As usual my Kindle does not apply (although I never use it and currently don't even know where it is, but it's there as a back-up) and if people buy me books or give me vouchers to spend (hint hint) then that falls outside the 12 also.


And there we have it.

That's why I haven't done this post yet; because it takes an inordinate amount of time to write!

So here we go. You will be able to keep up with how I'm doing by taking a little click on the page at the top right that says Not Really Resolutions 2013.

As long as I actually remember to update it that is. Probably should have put that as one of my resolutions.

If you wanted to know how I've fared at my Not Really Resolutions in the past you can look here and here.

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Long distance

"How are you and The Person getting on with the long distance thing?" is a question I never really know how to answer.

But whilst I'm not sure what the right answer is, I definitely know what the wrong answer is and that is the truth, which is that we're coping fine. We did long distance before so it's not like it's a massive shock to the system and we're both terribly practical people so we are just getting on with it.

However, trust me when I tell you that this is not what people want to hear. When people see me shrug my shoulders and say "Yeah we're just getting on with it." they read that to mean "Yeah we just don't love each other really and don't care that we don't get to see each other every day."

Nothing could be further from the truth for me. He really is my best friend and having got used to living with each other and seeing each other every day it's really horrible to no longer have that. Especially when we have no idea when this period of separation will end. (The uncertainty of it is the killer - if I knew we were long distance for a specific amount of time I could cope, having an indefinite meandering quality to it is not doing me any favours at the moment.)

Moving to a new place and starting a new job are huge big life-changing, weeing your pants scary type stuff and it's kind of hilarious that the one person that I would want there beside me when I did it, wasn't there. It wasn't easy in the beginning at all.

But, as I said, I'm a practical girl. I know there's no point weeping and wailing, it is what it is and nothing is to be gained from moping about, so I just have to get on with it. When I have a free weekend it is spent going to Preston to see him...

....aah yes...

"When I have a free weekend" - this is a phrase that throws some people. This is a phrase that makes people furrow their brow. Some people find it difficult to conceive that I wouldn't be spending every weekend going to Preston to see him. Some people think that the fact that I don't spend every weekend going to Preston somehow means that our relationship isn't for reals.

The reasons I don't go every weekend to Preston are as follows;
a) Have you seen the price of trains lately?
b) I have a life
c) He has a life

I have a life that is outside of The Person and I don't think that makes me a bad person. He doesn't need to come with me every time I go to Hull and I don't need to go with him every time he goes down South to see his family. He doesn't need to hold my hand when I go to see my friends and it won't affect how good a time he has with his friends if I'm not there.

Although we try to make sure we see each other at least every other week, if other things get in the way we cope with it - an unfortunate clash of our schedules means that we won't see each other for a month after the 22nd February - and that's pretty wank but I wouldn't for a second arrange my plans differently or expect him to cancel his plans.

Personally I think this shows how comfortable I am in our relationship. I don't need to see him every day or even every weekend. Do I wish I could? More than I can express.

What I'm about to say is a little controversial and will no doubt cause lips to be pursed and eyebrows to be raised above the roof, but I ask you to just think about what I say. Take it in and try and understand what I'm saying. I say this from what I think is a reasoned viewpoint, having been in unhealthy relationships where I've relied too heavily on the other person and vice versa.

Does having The Person in my life make my life better? Absolutely, 100% no doubt about it.

But do I need The Person in order to lead a fulfilled and happy life? No, I do not. I have friends (albeit far away, but they're there), I have family, I am capable of keeping myself amused.

And this is how I cope with being apart from him. By knowing that when we are together things are super mega awesome, but also knowing that things can still be awesome without him there. (And awesome is still awesome, even without the super and mega)

And I agree, we shouldn't need one day a year to tell someone we love them, but you know what? I shouldn't need one day a year to tell my Mum I love and appreciate her - but I would be a brave person to tell her that on Mother's Day.

So I'm more than happy to embrace Valentine's Day, give it a little hug and tell The Person that I love him, because at the moment I don't get to tell him face to face every day and there is nothing super, mega or awesome about that my friends.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Crazy Cat Lady Part 23 - Blinky on the Bed.

I've had a breakthrough of sorts with Blinky. As I'm sure you'll remember I live with mean cat who hates everyone and although I've been trying my hardest to make her like me, I have slowly come to the realisation that Blinky is never going to be a normal cat. She is most definitely at the wrong end of the autistic spectrum and although she's pretty high functioning there's definitely something not quite right when it comes to her personality.

I've continued with my plan of taking over the feeding of her in the hopes that we will foster a relationship and I've had a small, but significant breakthrough and Blinky now sleeps on my bed most nights.

However, before you tilt your head on one side and go "Awww how cute, what a lovely little kitty she is sleeping all curled up on the bed" you must remember that this is Blinky and she is not. normal.

It goes a little something like this...

1. I pad about my nest getting ready for bed whilst Blinky sits outside my bedroom door on the landing, hunched up and miserable looking.

2. I pick Blinky up and gently place her on my bed.

3. Blinky gets off my bed and goes back and sits hunched up on the landing

4. I close my door over, get in bed and call to Blinky to come in.

5. Blinky ignores me.

6. I turn my light out and lie very still.

7. 30 seconds later Blinky boots my door open and jumps on my bed, settling at the very very end and looking as if she doesn't want to be there.

8. I get back out of bed to close over the door she's managed to shove wide open.

9. I tickle Blinky on the head until she purrs and I can pretend she's like a real cat.

10. Blinky sleeps at the end of the bed for the whole night.

11. My alarm goes off in the morning.

12. Blinky immediately jumps off bed and goes and sits hunched up on the landing.

13. I come out of my room and Blinky ignores me, pretending the night before never happened.

14. I feel used.

It's not a happy story.

An example of what happens at the end of my bed each night whilst I lie still, terrified of moving in case I disturb her.