The Duchess of Hazard

I am the Fun Police.

At least as far as my daughter goes. She wants to take her scooter down a slight incline and I’m there, sucking my teeth on the sidelines, hardly daring to look. She wants to do star jumps on the trampoline and there’s my face, moulded into the mesh like a bank robber.

Yesterday, a group of us went to Newby Hall. Fun central, as far as kids are concerned. Water fountains to jump in. A lake to paddle in. A zip-wire to…zip down.

All potential death traps. Lynn Faulds-Wood has got nothing on me.

Water fountains = slip hazard.

Lake = drowning hazard.

Zip-wire = one way ticket to paraplegia.

Friends will testify that I have always been on the cautious side. (Except after a few beers – then I’ll do owt). However, since M died, I have become convinced something is going to happen to take my child too. In fact, my buttocks have been permanently clenched for eighteen months.

Prior to this, it was my own health which caused me anxiety. Everything took on catastrophic significance, from headaches (brain tumour) to athletes foot (skin cancer). It was a psychological unhinging which was attributed to M’s sudden illness and near-death in 2008. Finally I was told I had ‘Health Anxiety’ by my weary-eyed GP, who just wanted to satisfy me with a diagnosis of some description so that I would fuck off and leave her alone.

Since M was taken from me though, my anxieties have been transposed onto my girl. To the point yesterday where I was so caught up in worrying, I forgot to take her bathing suit and she refused to go into the fountains nude.

Instead she stayed close to me, wrapped up in the safety of the towel.

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9 thoughts on “The Duchess of Hazard

  1. Your post brought to mind an exchange I had with my mother, via phone, about an hour before I was to jump from a perfectly good airplane from 12,500 ft (2.36 miles). Mom was near-hysterical, begging me not to, chiding me for taking such a risk when I had little kids to think about…I told her to calm down, brushing her concern off as silly. I ended the call simply by saying I’d call her when I landed and hung up. My father had been critically injured just the year before.
    I feel now that I shouldn’t had been dismissive of her very real fears and worries over the possibility that I could be injured or killed doing something ‘dumb.’ Now, I think I might have been more thoughtful or mindful of her feelings about doing the skydive, and not called her beforehand. She already knew it had been a gift given to me for my birthday; and I knew at that time it was something she was uncomfortable with. By that same token, however, I was needing to live my life and not be so terrified all of the time, too. After a solid first post-accident year of devastating medical emergencies and constant worry and fear of losing Dad, I needed to prove to myself that I could taunt death and tempt fate and be victorious. That I wouldn’t be a statistic. Stats are comprised of the rare probabilities of worst result happening. It showed me at some point, I would need to understand how much about living wasn’t WITHIN MY CONTROL, no matter how I might wish it so The dive became my first step to regaining a little of my quest for life, so I could see I needed to live it more fully than I had since Dad was hurt. I hope it made some sense here. I guess what I mean to point to is this: there are just a handful of things that we MAY have control of in life…the rest really isn’t all that predictable, as we feel it is…and a lot of what happens is absolutely random. Try to allow yourself to ease gently into living a little at a time, especially when it comes to your little daughter. xxHugsxx

    • Yes I can see how you might have wished to taunt death by doing something risky. I think it is a response when something has happened to completely destabilise your faith in life. I too have had this reaction. Recklessness, I guess. Thanks for sharing this. I suppose it is a parent thing as much a post sudden-death thing. I do try to give her freedom, but I suppose I feel paranoid that she could be taken as quickly and as suddenly as he was. Which she could be. But generally this isn’t at the forefront of the mind of those who have not faced adversity…XX Hugs to you too, my Yankee friend! XX

  2. As a self appointed chief superintendent of the fun police, I hear you mate. Nowt wrong with a protective blanket in my view… Hey, I even do a risk assessment to go to the shitta. Love ya.

  3. Having posted that previous response, my grip on my children must have lapsed, (cheap french wine the cause). Have just witnessed Benny Hill style chase of my kids by out witted husband between the caravans in a park in France. Hysterical. X

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