As I drove my pampered pooch to the ‘parlour’ for her six-weekly canine indulgence, I heard the above expression on the Pause for Thought item on Chris Evans’ Morning show on Radio 2. I think the words were spoken by Rev Sharon Toze – I only caught the end so can’t be entirely sure, though her lullaby tone is very distinctive. After a nanosecond of ‘Pausing for Thought’, I realised that the phrase ‘The Lane for the Generally Bewildered’ utterly embodies my current outlook on life.
This month marks the 2-year anniversary since Pickle (5) came to join the already chaotic household of his forever family. The past 2 years have been, at times, more akin to a bungee jump than a rollercoaster ride to say the least. Pickle hasn’t had the best start in life and slipped through a rather loose net, even though he was on the Child Protection Register. He moved into care at the age of 2. Thankfully, he only experienced one foster home and an excellent one at that. Pickle came into our lives aged 3 and a bit.
After a tumultuous couple of years, I feel hesitantly confident enough to say (*touches wood with crossed fingers, strains to catch glimpse of first white butterfly of spring), we are at the stage of 2-steps-forward and half-a-shoe-size back (I hasten to add: Pickle has spades for feet), provided that life stays on an even keel and routine prevails – Pah! (Save that for future blogs).
So now, having taken over 12 months away from my freelance work as a translator, and slowly plodding – pretty unenthusiastically – back towards the rat race and with both Gherkin (9) and Pickle happily settled in school each day, I find myself standing in the kitchen, staring, wondering what the hell I went in there for. I feel I have a million-and-one-things to do, yet by the end of the day I have achieved the total sum of ‘absolutely bugger all’.
I find myself not quite in the fast lane with the other busy, 9-to-5 mums, darting in and out of the school gates with vomit-smeared suits, not quite ambling in the slow lane with that solitary contentment required to merrily skip your way through life…… but hogging, rather stoically, The Lane for the Generally Bewildered.