Thursday, 6 October 2011

Bruises and breakages

I'm dyspraxic , so are my boys. At least I know where and who they got it from.

I didn't realise until they were diagnosed although it was staring me in the face. I hadn't put 2 and 2 together when I thought back to my schooldays' nickname of Clumsy Clobbers.

Many broken plates, bottles and minor mishaps later , it dawned on me that there was a name for it. It now has me in stitches , literally ( we're regulars at A&E ).

So today , whilst shopping in John Lewis , I was reminded yet again of what its like to be so clumsy. I'd treated myself to a quick sneak peek of the Christmas goodies ( yes I know , still 2 months to go and all that but what the hell)  and had just picked up a delightful gift box to have a closer look. What then unfolded was a piece of pure slapstick. Somehow, I managed to lose my grip and in a desperate attempt to regain my hold, managed to bat the thing , ping pong style,  across the shopping aisle, but not before a sort of slow motion juggle first. If this wasn't bad enough, once I'd retrieved it and replaced it on its shelf , I then managed to do the whole thing all over again with a thankfully slightly smaller box. It was farce. There was a fellow shopper within a yard of me who watched with disbelief. You honestly couldn't make it up . A few years ago I might have blushed and moved swiftly on but these days I usually have to laugh out loud.

At about the same time as this comedy was taking place there was an almighty crash followed by the sound of breaking glass. It sounded expensive. I looked up to see an elderly gent standing alongside a pricey lamp that was now missing its glass shade. The price ticket was clearly visible to all - £199. He had my sympathy vote already . The poor man then had to go through the pretense of pretending to be interested in the cabinet it had been standing on, going as far as to enquire whether it was in stock. I felt his pain and shame. That could have been me.

The price tag for my shopping breakages to date has been relatively slight all thing considered. I knew my youngest took after me when we managed to shatter a glass topped coffee table in M&S some time ago , although I suspect it was cracked already. It was enough to put him off furniture shopping with Mum for life although I suspect this was just a rouse to get out of ever having to go to Ikea ( must take after his Dad on second thoughts). I'm a constant embarrassment to the boys although I do consider this to be part of my job description as Mum.

There are a few rules I now have to follow:

  • Never try to get car keys out of my handbag whilst standing over a drain in the road ( that's how my youngest first learnt the F*** word.

  • Avoid carrying cans of paint whilst lids are slightly ajar

  • Do not attempt to place tray containing hot drinks onto table whilst handbag strap is sliding off shoulder with a jolt

  • Greasy hands and glasses don't mix

  • Avoid old fashioned milk bottles with foil tops, screw caps are the only safe option.

I could go on but then I'd be here for some time. Mealtimes are hysterical in our house to which the kitchen table bears testament. Glassfulls of water are usually horizontal within seconds and bottles of sauce with indelible ink staining properties have re-coloured our kitchen floor over the years. If you want to know what dye they put in something called Ass Kicking Hot sauce , check out our floorboards ... and its not one you'd find in the Farrow and Ball palette.
I was considering replacing our table a while ago but decided to preserve the memories of a lifetime of food serving disasters for a while longer. Besides, the table I'd set my heart on was made of glass. Enough said.


  1. Oh Claire, you did make me laugh! Just what I needed after a difficult afternoon ....

    Where's this picture of the craft room then??

  2. You had me laughing out loud! I'm quite clumsy myself, as is my son and I think he is verging on dyspraxic. It does often go hand in hand with being on the autistic spectrum I think, so highly likely in his case.