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You are in: Beds Herts and Bucks > Read This > Mum's the Word > Mum's The Word: The Therapy Blues

Massage Therapy

Mum's The Word: The Therapy Blues

Our Bedfordshire housewife ponders the many dilemmas of growing old - and even considers therapy!

Self help manuals, holistic remedies, anti ageing creams, counselling and gurus are all part of a multi million pound industry which revolves around trying to make people feel better about themselves. In principle it’s a worthy concept but I’m afraid that when I read that the likes of Cherie Blair need gurus to sort out their wardrobes I feel a little sceptical about some of the solutions on offer. Besides, most of us simply don’t have the cash to indulge in the leather couch stuff. Normal folks start with bubble bath, work up to Tesco’s vitamin supplements and if things turn really sour resort to Paul McKenna. (Still counting backwards on that one.)

79, 78, 77, 76, 75…..

Now people often tell me I need therapy. I’m not sure why. Do they think I’m bonkers? Cos I’m definitely not mad enough to have counselling because if I did everyone would know I was indeed mad rather than just wondering if I put on G string two sizes too small. Yep, I can just hear it now outside the school gates….

“Have you heard Mrs Turley’s having counselling? £70 an hour! Boy, she must be mad!”

“I dunno, I heard she just gave up on the granny knickers.”

“Nah, that can’t be true. M&S would’ve gone out of business.”

Nope, when we poor overworked mums are stressed out and looking like Ken Dodd on speed and need a morale booster, we have simple methods that (theoretically) should bring us back to the land of the living. Unfortunately, sometimes even these remedies backfire. Take the following scenarios for example…

A long luxurious bath followed by an early night. (Husband thinks this is a precursor to a night of hot passion.)

A new haircut, freshly applied makeup, followed by a takeaway for tea. (Husband thinks this is a precursor to a night of hot passion.)

Ken Dodd

Do you see this in the bathroom mirror aswell!?

Buying a new set of underwear, perhaps a nice dress or even a pair of strappy shoes. (Husband thinks you owe him a night of hot passion.)

Buying a Paul McKenna self help manual. (Husband thinks if you are semi-comatosed he can have a night of slightly tepid but nevertheless acceptable passion.)

Alas, in my experience, the only way to get some decent rest is not to change your underwear for a week and pitch a tent in the back garden. At least the gnomes don’t wake you up at 3 am - although you may have some strange dreams about acquiring a small red hat and some rather unfashionable shoes.

69, 68, 67, 66, 65……

Anyway, being in a Ken Dodd frame of mind lately I thought I’d concentrate on beautifying myself at very little expense so as to avoid compensation claims from third parties. (You know what I mean.) First of all, this meant dealing with the hair issue. Now luckily I’m still in a position where I’m not yet dying my hair although to my gross dismay a few grey strands are appearing. So after some consideration, I thought I’d use some of that conditioner especially for brunettes. This was in the hope that the grey strands would suddenly feel re-energised and decide that the grey thing was a temporary blip in an otherwise successful career as a brunette, do the proper thing and turn back to their original colour – you know just the way things do in your dreams. Anyway, after perusing the shampoo aisle for what seemed like decades  I finally bought some stuff that looked like this when I squeezed it out;

To which I ask…..What is this vile, rancid concoction?! It says “plant extracts” on the bottle but I think “decomposing leaves” is a more accurate description. I might as well have stuck kitchen waste on my head because frankly I was unsure if it was hair conditioner or whether I was experiencing a cat litter tray moment. Or is that movement? Hmm…


The wash out from Jane's shampoo - yuk!

Well I shampooed and rinsed and there was muck everywhere. I mean, everywhere! In fact when I glanced down at the shower floor I was worried I’d overdosed on the herbal diet pills and simply didn’t know I had no bowel control anymore. Believe me, I was petrified. The thought of having to wear incontinence pants for the rest of my life was like one of those episodes where time stands still and you think;

“Oh Sh*t.” (Literally in my case!)

Anyway, after only a mild panic attack, I eventually realised the stuff swirling around my feet was actually the wash out from the shampoo. So all’s well that ends well. However, here’s a tip – remember to rinse out your ears because a globule of that stuff stuck in them is not very attractive. Well, so my husband tells me.

So I’m stuck with grey hairs. Well at least until I decide there’s more grey than there is brown when I will be hot wheeling it to the hairdressers faster than Jenson Button can drive round the track at Silverstone. But I suppose in the grey hair stakes, the real test of aging is whether you’ve got grey hairs down under isn’t it? I mean I can’t be the only one who lies awake at night quaking with fear and wondering whether the next day will be the one when I look down, and with sheer mortifying horror, see a grey hair staring up at me and screaming;


Excuse me for a moment; I think I’ve got another panic attack coming on…

54, 53, 52, 51, 50….

Anyway, I’ve come to the conclusion that the only way to escape an early demise brought on by the onset of Short and Curly Sudden Death Syndrome is to get a Brazilian. Permanently. It’ll have to be done by laser therapy, of course, because that sort of agony every 8 weeks would be tough even for a woman like me who is used to waking up and seeing Ken Dodd in her bathroom mirror. Hmm… maybe the best thing would be to just get all my body hair removed? Then I wouldn’t have to look at any grey hairs at all and have the added bonus of being able to pretend I was a professional footballer. What could be better?

You know, there are just so many dilemmas as you grow old. You don’t think about them when you’re young and then suddenly age creeps up on you and you realise you’d better make the most of the time you’ve got left. I find this is particularly the case when I’m window shopping. I’m peering through the shop front and suddenly I see this stranger staring back and I think to myself…

“Why, why, why does Ken Dodd keep following me around everywhere?”

Of course then I realise it’s me again and I’m back into Boots wondering about which supplement, which shampoo, which anti wrinkle cream I should get. Yikes, I’m so confused about all these treatments I think I need therapy just to work out the therapies! Maybe the lovely Paul McKenna will work it all out for me. Now if only I could fall asleep…

33, 32, 31, 30, 29 zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

“Hey, have you brought some new conditioner? Mmmm… that smells so good… come over here…..”

Oh well. Back to the drawing board.

last updated: 12/10/2009 at 10:15
created: 12/10/2009

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Mike French
The pictures start well and then gradually get more scary! Is this the message behind this piece!? I find in my older years it's best to detach yourself from the image that looks back to you from the mirror - or wear shades whilst in the bathroom.

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