Tag Archives: Amazon

Teenagers …

teenagerThrough the unsettling last couple of weeks, The Teenager has, in his own indomitable way, never failed to put a smile on my face.

Teenagers are just fabulous – they may wreck your house, bankrupt you and leave wet towels everywhere, but you get a refreshing honesty from them in return.

Take yesterday. He leapt downstairs in boxer shorts en-route to his Special K, and paused to show me his body-building moves.

At the time, I was catching up with ‘Come Dine With Me’ (final episode of six), absent-mindedly dipping into a bag of crisps.

‘Aaaaand, this (new pose), aaaaaand this (deep squat), aaaaaand look mum (muscle flex).’

‘Wow, that’s lovely dear. Most impressive.’

‘You jel?’


‘Well jel, yeah?’

‘Oh, yeah, very jealous. Well done!’

‘You know mum, and don’t take this the wrong way, but you’re not fat, not like that programme about obese people who have a year to save their lives, like, you could do it in a couple, you know? I mean, if you act now you could even get a Valentine’s card, you know?’

‘Yeah, thanks for that.’

Last week we were in the car (I was probably driving him to the gym) when, out of the blue, he said,

‘Muuuuuuuum, do you ever blog about me?’


‘You know I do. You even have a compliment on an Amazon book review. So, yeah.’

‘I forgot.’


‘Am I like, the main character?’

‘Oh look, we’re here already, have a great training session, ta ra!’

A couple of days ago, I was trying to wrap up some uni work when The Teenager texted me (he was upstairs). Expecting yet another video of wrestlers/Adele in a car/cats scared of cucumbers (google it, it’s odd), I ignored it. My phone went again.

‘Mum. You are a Legend. I love you.’

I melted then texted back,

‘Aw, and you are the best son ever!’

‘D’uh, you’ve only got one.’

‘I know. Still love you. Monkey.’

‘Calm down. Can you make me some toast?’

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AmazonI’m so pleased to announce that my book is now published – a compilation of over two years of blog posts, edited and proofed down into one handy format. I’ve had an amazing amount of help along the way, not least from:

If Bridget Jones had MS, this would be her diary.‘ – The MS Society.

‘The value of the Stumbling in Flats blog … it opens so many avenues of support and understanding, not only to the sufferer, but to the family, the friends … so that they will understand what it’s like to walk through treacle.’ – Janis H. Winehouse.

Social media is an increasingly important way for people affected by MS to get support, information and inspiration. Barbara’s writing offers all of this plus a winning sense of humour – a vital ingredient in living well with MS.‘ – The MS Trust.

A very special thank you to Janis Winehouse who kindly wrote the foreword and to Paul Eustice, a supremely patient publisher who held my hand through the entire process (our hundreds of emails and phone calls bear testament to this).

The project has taken months of selecting, editing and proofing, and re-reading my entire blog from start to finish over fifty times has been a unique form of therapy. I’ve also re-read every single comment from you guys, on the blog and on Twitter,  and am so grateful for all your support throughout the good times and especially the bad. You’ve been with me every step of the way.

With that in mind, the book is in memory of the one person who couldn’t be there, my dad:


My book is now available to buy in any country in which there is an Amazon – here’s the quick links for UK and America:

Amazon UK 

Amazon USA

So, a huge thank you to everyone who has helped shape my experience of coming to terms with MS. Here’s to the next two years!

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the one armed banditI think I got a bit carried away with the dumper truck in work last week.

I’d been allowed out the office (my laptop at home, Jeremy Kyle and coffee on tap) and let loose on one.

The steering wheel has a funny knobbly thing on it, so I happily swung it round and round, little realising the damage it would do to my arm and wrist.

Fast forward a couple of days and I’m in agony. I’ve sprained my right arm and I am once more off work. Getting to be a bit of a habit?

The Teenager has been pressed into service like never before – laundry, getting dishes out the oven, sweeping through the house. Much wailing and gnashing of teeth, ‘I am not your servant’ (stomp stomp) being a favourite retort, with me responding, ‘Oi! I can still flick the internet off with one finger, so ner, ner, ner, ner, ner.’

Anyway, I am moping around the house feeling rather sorry for myself. Who knew arms could be so useful? There is so much I just can’t do without reaching for the painkillers and ‘ooofing’ out loud. Shampooing my hair is farcical. Driving is off-limits and holding a book to read is deadly. I feel as if I’ve been snowed-in without the ‘yay, we’re in the middle of a national crisis!’ excitement that normally follows half an inch of the white stuff.

I took the bus into town yesterday to meet friends for a sushi lunch, and try as I might, I just can’t use chopsticks left-handed. So I gave it a go with my right, wincing, and I just about managed (I was hungry – 6 plates). I’ve bought myself a tubi-grip wotsit and it helps a little. I’ve weaned myself off the strong painkillers after I started dreaming whilst awake. In short, I am Fed Up.

The upside is, I have cleaned out the ‘whatever’ drawer, compiled an Amazon wish list, caught up with all my Scandi-crime programmes on my Sky Planner and got to grips (ha!) with my ‘iPad for Complete and Utter Idiots’ book. I am now semi-fluent in Danish and Swedish and have found my can opener. Plus I have a bunch of useless apps.

I had to text in sick this morning, something I hate doing. The boss responded, ‘no worries, we’re having a lovely fry-up in the cafe’. Meh. If the promise of that won’t get me back to work, nothing will. 5:2 diet be damned..

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