Mumps and Mayo.

By Alison March 25, 2007 19 Comments 2 Min Read


When your son wakes up three hours late doing a really rather  spectacular impression of Desperate Dan you can be certain it isn’t going to be your average Sunday.

But then it hadn’t been my average Saturday either, because bless me, it has been a weekend and a half. And not in a good way.

There I was zipping round  the supermarket in very silly heels, (Remember that article about the Retro Housewife…?) weighing up the merits of Ainsley Harriots Ceaser Salad Dressing versus the delectable Mr Newmans, when almost without thinking I slipped a jar of organic mayonnaise into my trolley. Slipped Dear Readers being the operative word, because said mayonnaise dashed straight to the floor, covering my toes in mayo and flicking glass from here to Timbuktu. Glass I felt a sudden urge to tidy up. So tidy up I did. Grabbing the smashed jar  and watching in astonishment as blood fountained out my index finger and curdled the mayonnaise. So because I am a trooper, I put my finger in my mouth and went about my business till I noticed people staring and an old lady finally took my left hand and said "Excuse me dear, you have blood running out of your mouth…"

So I took myself to the instore pharmacy, splattered pretty red blood all over the counter and duly keeled over in a dead faint, then woke up to find handsome young medic attending to my dribbly mouth and taking my blood pressure and an attending crowd gathered around the girl with mayonnaise pants and blood splattered face. I am so undignified it is not funny.

So declaring myself alive, well and the shade of a mouldy olive, I let them bandage me  up and agreed to pay for my shopping with one hand raised above my head and then got in the car with Mark, (Who was waiting  outside with Finn, because my car is yet again off road), who, as should only be expected, presented  me  with  the kind of face that said, "and you still say you don’t know why I left you???"…

And that is I think enough medical drama for one weekend. But oh no, the universe wasn’t finished with me yet.
This morning my poor little boy woke up looking like the elephant man. Fat faced and not happy about it. Whimpering and red enough to give a beetroot a run for its money. So off we went to the hell that is the walk in clinic, where we waited a million hours and Finley did a fantastic impression of  the heathiest child alive, till we walked into the surgery where he performed the role of hysterical baby with style, and the Doctor apparently too scared to touch him, took one look at him, and declared "Mumps! Blood Tests! Ten days incubation! See no-one. Do not leave your four walls and paint a black cross on your front door!!" Or something like that. And I resisted temptation to collapse in a heap of sorrow at the thought of being confined  to barracks with a little boy who sent him self to sleep after informing me that his face was fat, but "not as fat as yours Mummy".

Who invented kids?? Pray tell…  


  1. Gayla says:

    Oh, I' so sorry about your day. Isn't it terrible when everything flops all at once? I hope Finley feels better. Mark never will forgive himself, and don't you ever think otherwise. As for the bloody finger… Wow.. You could have been really hurt with all that broken glass, blood, fainting. I'm glad you are fine…. relatively speaking. Hey, by the way… is there a reason that the only posts I can reas aret eh ones icluding and after the little boy learns to appreciate parenting???? All else is blank with a little red x in teh corner… my error or typepad???? please don't say mine! haha… Love you honey.

  2. Violette says:

    I'm afraid I know what you are talking about !
    After that, I hope you'll be all right very quickly.
    I love the painting that illustrates your post, (would love to know who it is from..)
    take good care

  3. Jennifer says:

    You do so much to inspire other women and add a little beauty to our lives. Good karma must be just around the corner.
    It's hard to do everything alone. Poop on that Mark.

  4. jellybean says:

    Alison, it's not like the universe is dumping on you. Take a closer look at how you're creating the drama in your life. Or, maybe you really just thrive on chaos. If you like this kind of excitement because there isn't any other kind coming your way, then at least don't complain about it.
    Speaking of dumping, that's a really "constructive" suggestion to poop on Mark. I've never seen a relationship where things go so badly just because of one of the involved parties being a jerk. It takes two, and maybe it's about time you faced up to your role in all of these crises.
    You seem to otherwise be very smart and have so much creative potential. Don't waste it by blaming Mark, the universe, the mailman, the stalker, theiving old ladies, etc., etc., etc. Pick your battles more wisely.

  5. Kris says:

    Some days life just sucks! I'm glad that you weren't injured worse and that Finn will mend as well. Here's to a better tomorrow! Chin up…
    And Gayla, no, it's not just you! I can't see anything below this post either!! Haven't since yesterday morning…

  6. jamie l says:

    Who is this nasty, condescending dip named "jellybean"?
    It's interesting to note, jellybean, how you place an emphasis on the constructive worth of other people's advice to Alison. I'm sure that you consider your words to be truly helpful in comparison to the counsel of others. Sadly, however, you come off as a sour, humorless crank whose post is a thinly masked attempt to pump up one's own sorely lacking sense of self-esteem. Alison is a witty, lovely person doing her best in the face of challenging circumstances. Be careful you don't fall off of your high horse, jellybean.

  7. leabertdot says:

    Poor you, poor Finn! I hope he's on the mend soon.I quite like the idea of having to hibernate away for ten days in my own home. Just think of all the delicious treats you could bake,go raid your comfort draw. But remember despite certain comments we all love you for being you and sharing you tales with us x

  8. Terri says:

    Oh, dear! What a weekend! Hope you're finger is o.k. And Finn is feeling bette. Here in the U.S. nobody gets mumps anymore …the get innocualations instead. I thnk it's better just to get it, build up your antibodies and be done. Though I'm sure about now you wouldn't be agreeing with that…poor baby!
    God bless.

  9. Finn-I had the mumps myself before the shot to stop it came out…not fun!
    Jellybean…I'm assuming you date Mark.
    Alison…you are so creative, I'm sure we will all benefit from your 10 days of hibernation! There is no telling what surprises you will come up with to delight and entertain most of the world…(not to pressure you, hehe…)

  10. jellybean says:

    Jamie, take your own advice. You assume a lot.
    Shabbyinthecity, I've learned not to take an interest in people like Mark, by doing just what I'd recommended to Alison – learning what I'd contributed to the situation, working on myself, and thus attracting a different type of gentleman. And that's what they are now – gentlemen.
    Also, keep in mind that we're only getting one side of the breakup story here. The full story is none of our business, anyway.
    Did you two notice my last paragraph? These comments aren't being put out there just for the fun of it. I vaguely remember another poster who was savaged when she tried to offer some constructive criticism, and in a much less blunt way than mine. Alison invites readers to comment, and with anything posted she can either take it or leave it. She's smart enough to decide whether I'm full of it or not.
    So, is it only allowable to offer sweet, syrupy comments, stories about how the same thing happened to you, outpourings of sympathy, little pats on the back, etc.? A few entries back, Alison asked, I assume rhetorically, if she should just grow up. There's much truth to be found in half-joking offerings.
    Remember, don't ask the question if you're not prepared to hear all of the answers. Alison seems to have pulled out of the very vulnerable spot she was in at this time last year, and thus my provoking comments to get her thinking more about the direction in which she's taking her life. It would truly have been unkind to put out such a challenge at that time, but in the last few months it has sounded like she's looking for a push in the right direction again.
    Alexandra Stoddard, who seems to be a heroine of many readers here, says exactly the same thing – you can create the life you want. However, you not only create the good in your life, you create a lot of the junk, too, in ways you aren't even aware of unless you apply a bit of introspection and have the courage to face some unpleasant facts about yourself. Something everyone can stand to do regularly, including the readers who have been put off here. If my comments push your buttons so strongly, then maybe there's some truth for you in them?

  11. Nicola says:

    What a horrible weekend! I hope you and Finn start to feel better after hibernating for a week!

  12. lazy h says:

    Whoa, ladies! Although I'd say Jellybean was a trifle combative in her approach – and you might work on that, Jellybean, if you want people to be receptive to your advice – I think that your reactions are too harsh. Don't we all read and comment on Alison's blog because we like her and wish her well?
    I do resent, however, the accusation that the comments are 'syrupy'. The women who comment here are supportive of each other; this is a gentle place. There are plenty of other arenas, on the Internet and in real life, where you can get more disputatious. If that's a word.
    To continue the discussion, I'd like to repeat what I've said before – you can't judge someone's entire life from their blog. In fact, I'd say it was naive. Offering advice on how someone should live their life based on incomplete information seems to me unhelpful.
    Now someone else…
    *runs away*

  13. jellybean says:

    No need to run away, lazy h. You can use the word harsh, if that's your perception, and that's OK. You can also resent the word syrupy; doesn't change my opinion. Isn't free will a wonderful thing?
    It's a little weird discussing Alison as if she's not "here," but sometimes it is precisely because you like someone and wish them well that you raise points that no one else seems to raise, upon pain of verbal shredding. Do you only tell your friends what they want to hear? When they've thrown out some points for consideration, do you just give them sweetness and light, even when there's enough they themselves are raising that suggests all is not as well as they'd like it to be? I've been given this sort of verbal "shove" by friends at times, have not liked it too well on the spot, but on further reflection often find their comments have merit. Your comments about my harsh manner will be treated with the same consideration, btw.
    I'm not commenting on Alison's entire life, just the parts she's been willing to open to us, and more specifically, the parts she's begun to reassess herself. I'm only operating on information she herself has provided AND solicited opinions on, in the form of allowing comments. After reading the many blog entries from the beginning to the present, one does notice patterns of thought or behavior in given circumstances. In the early entries, Alison didn't seem particularly interested in reader response. The middle entries are so full of pain that it truly would have been cruel for anyone to make very pointed comments, sort of like kicking someone when they're down. Lately, a new and improved Alison seems to have emerged, one who can handle suggestions on how she can get what she really wants in a much more effective way. And again, it's her prerogative to take or leave anything we're throwing out from the peanut gallery. She's handled comments she's deemed uncalled for before; she can stick up quite well for herself, more evidence of the new and improved her.
    It's one thing to interject your opinion when no one has asked for it, and it's another thing to give feedback when it's asked for in the form of comments being allowed. As for the manner of delivery, I simply decided not to dance around the subject and spend hours mulling over the myriad sensitive and indirect word choices. My remarks were meant for Alison, not for anyone else who reads here, and yet again, she can take them in for further consideration or just dismiss them as you have.
    Not offering advice when someone has given you a specific amount of information about their life with the intention of garnering input is what seems unhelpful.

  14. jellybean says:

    Sorry, lazy h, for starting out the last comment with the statement on "harsh;" I meant to address "combative." And, you did correctly identify my motives, which I appreciate.

  15. lazy h says:

    Freedom of will – and freedom of speech – I couldn't agree more, Jellybean, and I hope you didn't feel that I was suggesting that you should not speak, because I really didn't intend that. Still, we can disagree with each other.
    And yes – it is weird discussing Alison as if she's not here. Hello Alison! Hope you're well!
    You are right that friends should be prepared to tell each other hard truths. My problem is that because hearing these things can be painful for the recipient and can have a quite negative effect on him or her, one should be careful about doing so unless one knows the person a great deal better than I think is possible through a blog. Giving hard advice, in my opinion, carries the responsibility for taking care of the person who receives it and for the effect it may have on him or her. Not that I mean that Alison can't take it – hello again Alison! – but if you want an example of unintended consequences, look at some of the other comments here.
    Also, to me, your advice read as very definite, whereas I think it could only ever be tentative. Since we don't know each other and cannot see each other's faces and hear each other's intonations, I do think that we have to choose our words carefully. And I see blogs as expressions of certain aspects of people's personalities and attitudes, but necessarily shaped, perhaps simplified, creating a persona and with plenty left out. So that's why I mentioned incomplete information.
    I'm also rather curious as to why you chose to post your comments in a public arena since you say they're for Alison and I'm wondering why you didn't just email her?
    I'm only explaining my own standpoint here, since I put my oar in anyway. It's probably the standpoint of an oversensitive pedant! Originally, I just wanted to step in because everyone seemed to be getting rather personal.
    I missed the appeal for advice, which is perhaps another reason why I may have been dismissive of what you wrote.
    I don't expect we'll agree over this, but thanks for the chance to discuss it. Maybe my position that we can't really know bloggers from their blogs is too extreme?
    Best wishes

  16. jellybean says:

    Hi again, lazy h,
    No worries – I'm actually very glad that you pulled the discussion in a more responsible direction. I don't find name-calling and insinuations about a person's motives to be particularly mature, either.
    I decided to post here because not long ago Alison explained that she'd had some email mix-ups and that she was snowed under a very large pile of unanswered mail. She seems to get a lot less message traffic on the blog, and it just seemed better to post where there isn't already a backup.

  17. Nancy says:

    Warning: I am NOT as nice as lazy h.
    Eh, nothing like being called on the carpet and preached at with a holier-than-thou attitude by an internet pyschologist/analyst wanna-be named after a candy.
    Jeezzzzz Louise. Got my panties in a wad just "hearing" the finger-wagging, tongue clucking, condenscending tone in that know-it-all's "advice". Sorry to sound like a bitch, but that is exactly what a certain commenter came across as. NOT helful at all…just judgemental, HARSH, accusatory, and UNNECESSARY!
    (Alison, PLEASE do not alter your style, change yourself, or stop sharing based on what ONE windbag tells you!)
    I expect some long winded, pompous retalitory post which is *just fine*…just get off Allison's butt, will ya'?
    JB, I am SURE you never had any life problems, and if you did, you handled them with minimal muss or fuss and still smelled like a rose.
    Phoo-ey. I ain't buying it.
    I have been on this old planet long enough to have been Ali's mum….I know a lot about living, and pain, and coping as well.
    But it is NOT my place nor desire to *preach* at someone on their OWN blog!!
    Talk about NERVE! Move on and shut your pie hole.

  18. jellybean says:

    Well, Nancy, if you read Alison's latest entry, I think she's settled the issue already. And it's to respect her wishes, not yours, that you won't find me posting on these sort of topics again.
    Nice that this has struck a chord for you, though. It's often the things that really get us going that point to what we need to look at in ourselves.

  19. Nancy says:

    JB, I won't muddy up Alison's blog after this but I just have to tell you, you are the type of internet comment lurker no one really likes.
    When you decide to fall off your psycho pedestal, come back and visit again.
    And please, don't give yourself any credit for setting Alison straight. She was never broken.
    All you did was prove what a self important toot you are.
    Now, shoo, go back to couch and get in touch with your inner self.
    We have seen enough.
    "It's often the things that really get us going that point to what we need to look at in ourselves."
    I guess you proved that statement pretty well, huh?

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