Firstly, sorry about the pun above - this is a perennial joke in our house usually followed by me pulling my trousers down to an unseemly teenager level and doing some very bad impressions of the dads in Three Men and a Baby. However, on to the more serious stuff...
My son taught me a lesson the other day. He doesn't know this (and unless he reads this, is unlikely to find out) but on Saturday morning he was asked to play golf with his friends. He is a keen golfer and for Christmas, he is getting a new (well, new to him) set of Calloway irons. But on Saturday morning it was, surprise, surprise, very cold and he looked out of the window and said he didn't fancy it. There then followed a conversation between mother and son along the lines of how his friends weren't worried about freezing on the golf course and what was the point of large amounts of money being spent on new irons (which he can't use until after Christmas as they are wrapped) if he didn't go and practise. There was a shrug of the shoulders and he disappeared upstairs, re-appearing moments later in his check (a la Ian Poulter but not as loud) golf trousers and the rest of the ensemble, ready to go. I heard him leave the house, chatting to his friend's dad who picked him up, sounding full of excitement and looking forward to playing eighteen holes. He went with a good heart.
It strikes me that in 2010, I have done a lot of stuff but not always with a good heart. 'Doing it, not digging it.' It's been a really busy year in terms of work, and in terms of the charity I am involved with (and no, I still haven't updated the website but I'll get there). Added to that, I've had two/three children at home and a very exciting, though up and down year with the fourth, a lodger and a whole host of other stuff including school governorship etc. However, this is no excuse. I like being busy, it's part of what I am. So unless I re-prioritise what I want to do with my life (the twilight years that remain!) I need to consider not just what I do, but the manner in which I do it. I need to live my life with a good heart.
Yesterday I rang one of my dear friends who had definitely borne the brunt of the great grumpiness, particularly of the last few months, and apologised for being an old bag. She laughed, agreed that I had been grumpy and met me yesterday with a lovely poinsettia and a smile and a hug. I feel better already. I have also apologised to the one who really does get the worst of my moods but he wisely said I had not been any grumpier than usual! (I am still working out how to interpret that...)
So if you have been the unlucky recipient of some of my less endearing moments in 2010, please accept this as an apology and feel free to remind me in 2011 that I have decided not to be a rat bag in future.
Have a lovely Christmas, dear reader, and a wonderful, healthy and happy New Year.
PS I realise this sounds like a New Year's Resolution and I suppose it is, though of an early variety. I am hopeless at keeping New Year's Resolutions, but I made one in 2008 which I still keep (the only successful resolution amongst many over the years) and that is to give blood, which I do on a regular basis and did yesterday. This is not to sound smug but if you can, please do.