On Guard! Q&A Meme

I have been tagged by the lovely Jayne at Mum’s the Word and my BMB Comment Group friend Mari from Mari’s World with this Guardian style Q&A.

Here are my answers to the questions poached from the paper of record originally by Mrs Lister.

Which living person do you most admire and why?
My friend, who I will not name, who never gave up hope of having a baby despite going through some horrible pregnancies and losses. Who knew that the only way she could have a child of her own was to use a surrogate which she has now done and has a beautiful daughter. This friend who has been through so much is always strong for others, always knows just what to say to make someone feel at ease and goes out of her way to help and support other people. This friend helped me through my last cycle of IVF, keeping me positive and strong through her own positivity and resilience. She supported other women with similar issues online and in person and did everything that she could to make others feel better about their situation and themselves. This is a friend who I admire for her courage, strength and determination and for being a passionate woman full of love and respect for her family and friends. This is a woman who makes me want to be a better person and makes me remember to cherish every moment and enjoy every day. I feel very lucky to call this lady my friend and I cannot wait until I see her again.

When were you happiest?
December 2008 when David asked me to marry him. You can read the story of his very romantic proposal here. This moment in time was matched in February 2010 when we found out that we were pregnant as a result of our fifth cycle of IVF and we were almost certain that a scan would confirm it was twins!

What was your most embarrassing moment?
I am certain that there have been loads but a memorable occasion is going to work in odd shoes and not realising at all until someone pointed it out to me in the staffroom. I was wearing one red shoe and one black shoe and I had not noticed at all. Thankfully I had spare shoes in my classroom and did not have to explain to my Year 2 pupils why I was wearing different shoes that day!

Aside from property, what is the most expensive thing you’ve bought?
Do you know, I don’t know. Perhaps a computer or a holiday or a collective total of baby things. I have never bought a car or any expensive furniture. I do not spend a fortune on any single items of clothes. I honestly do not know the answer to this question.

What is your most treasured possession?
My engagement ring. When David proposed he did so with a diamond that we then had set into a ring that we designed. It is a wavy shape like the sea and the winding path to the castle where David proposed. The diamond represents the castle or strength. The sapphire represents blue lights. You will have to read the proposal story to understand why!! I love this ring for what it represents and because it is something of David that I wear every single day. It is very special to me and I will treasure it always. Next month we are going back to the man who made the ring to get our wedding rings made. I am very excited about that and know that that ring will become a treasured possession too.

Where would you like to live?
I would like to live in a village by the sea. I want to be able to walk to school with the children and work in the village school that they attend. On our way home from school I would like us to be able to walk our dog (we do not currently have a dog) along the beach and collect shells before going home for tea. I want us to have a garden high up on a cliff overlooking the ocean with a big wooden swing hanging from an ancient tree. I want to have a big wooden table in the kitchen that we all sit around as a family for every meal. I want to sleep in the attic with a view to the stars so when I cannot sleep I can stare at the skies and count my blessings for how lucky I am to have such a wonderful home and perfect family. I want to go to church every Sunday and be part of a village community for years to come. I want my grandchildren to love coming to our house where we bury treasure in the garden for them to find and have lots of little trinkets that they love to play with. I would like to live in a village by the sea.

What’s your favourite smell?
David. The mixture of his deodorant and his natural scent is just heavenly and it makes me feel safe and secure. I love snuggling in his clothes when he is not here and snoozing on his side of the bed just for a few minutes when he gets up in the morning. I am very lucky that David has a lovely smell!

Who would play you in the film of your life?
This is a tricky one. I have been told before that I look like various people – Rachel Stevens, Sandra Bullock, Mel Sykes (the Boddingtons girl!) but I am not sure that I would choose any of these. I like the girl in The Time Travellers Wife, if I could choose anyone I think that I would choose her. Rachel McAdams.

What is your favourite book?
I love The Time Traveller’s Wife, The Handmaid’s Tale and The Silver Sword. Each book is from a different stage of my life. The Silver Sword by Ian Serraillier is from childhood, Margaret Atwood’s Handmaid’ Tale from my teenage years and The Time Traveller’s Wife I have adored as an adult. Since becoming a Mum the most reading I have done is Hairy Maclary and Brown Bear!

What is your most unappealing habit?
I complain a lot! I know I do, David tells me so all the time. I think it is because I try to have the conversations with him that I should be having with other new Mums. He does not understand that though I complain I would not change anything, I would not have our beautiful babies any other way I just like to complain sometimes, but I do know that is very unappealing, but it does make me feel better to have a rant!

What would be your fancy dress costume of choice?
I would love to be Cat Woman and be confident enough about my figure to wear a cat suit. That would be great!

What is your guiltiest pleasure?
That I can mention on my blog!!! Chocolate and the act of blogging! And the combination of the two! I waste a lot of time writing my blog but it is important for me especially now that I am not working. It is a record of life with Esther and William but it is so much more than that, it is a release, a platform, a place of my own. The chocolate is what feeds me when I am there!

What do you owe your parents?
Thanks for bringing me up to be a confident individual. Thanks for helping me out of many a tight spot over the years. Thanks for loving me the way that they do.

To whom would you most like to say sorry to and why?
My Nan. I loved my Nan with all my heart and was devastated when she died. I did not see her as much as I would have liked towards the end. I was too wrapped up in my own life and I regret that. I would give anything for one more game of scrabble. I would give anything for her to meet David and hear her say, “You got it right in the end, Jen. You got it right in the end.” Love you, Nan. I want her to know about Esther and William and see what content and beautiful babies they are. I would love for her to have seen me get my first class honours degree. I would love for her to know that I came home to Kent and if she were here I would visit her every single day. Love you, Nanny Jock, Nanny Nairn x

Who or what is the greatest love of your life?
David without question or hesitation. He is the absolute love of my life. He turned my world around and made my life what it is today. He gave me Esther and William! He is everything to me and I would be nothing without him. I love him and he is great. The greatest love of my life.

What does love feel like?
Bubbles, tiny little bubbles building up to a fizz inside you that make you want to squeal with ecstasy and spin around till you’re so dizzy that you collapse on soft grass in the sun. That is what love feels like to me.

What was the best kiss of your life?
The best kiss of my life is the kiss that nearly was but actually wasn’t!! It was when David and I first met and we went out for a drink to discuss work! We got on really well and there was an obvious chemistry between us. As we left the pub he offered me a lift home which I refused and it was so so obvious that he wanted to kiss me and I desperately wanted to kiss him, but we refrained. But the intensity of feeling between us in that moment was electrifying. I knew that when we did kiss it would be something wonderful and it was. It was amazing! I am never disappointed when David kisses me. It is always wonderful!

Which words or phrases do you most over use?
Not really sure??? Might have to ask others what words or phrases I say a lot?

What is the worst job you’ve done?
Working in the YMCA cafe in Dusseldorf when I was about 15 / 16. I used to cook breakfasts and I used to stink and be so greasy by the end of it. I used to start work at 7am, often straight from a night out in the Altstadt. Not a good experience for me or probably the people who I served the breakfast too!! Oh to be young and carefree again! No thanks x

If you could change one thing from your past, what would you change? If you could edit your past, what would you change?
Everything happens for a reason so I should say that I wouldn’t change a thing but I do wish that I had not gotten ill during my pregnancy and I wish that I could have carried Esther and William to term. I feel that I let them down, I let David down and I cannot bear to think about it. I wish that I had done better for all of them. And I hope that we will be pregnant again so that we can experience it fully like other couples do.

What is the closest you’ve come to death?
Probably the week or so before Esther and William’s birth when I was very sick in hospital and no one was really sure why. For three days I was pumped full of pain killers and anti sickness drugs while they tried to ascertain what was wrong with me. Eventually they had to cut me open with the babies still inside to find out what was wrong and treat it. A very scary few days for David and our families thinking that they might not only lose me but the babies as well. Hard to believe it was all nearly a year ago now. So close to death and then celebrating birth. Two births!

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Working for and achieving my first class honours degree and being Mummy to Esther and William

When did you last cry and why?
I seem to cry a lot at the moment. The last time was when I was struggling on my own with Esther and William and felt that no one really understands how hard it can be, how lonely. I think often it is through exhaustion that the tears come. Oh dear, makes me sound quite unstable! I am not though x

How do you relax?
I relax by blogging, going on my laptop, going out for a walk with the babies in their buggy, watching The West Wing and having a monthly massage and facial. Lovely!

What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
Being able to drive. I have failed my test four times and am now extremely lacking in confidence. I know that I have to conquer my fears though and am starting lessons again on the 27th April. Hopefully it will be 5th time lucky with driving as it was with IVF!!

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
Take a deep breath and get on with it; no one is going to do it for you!

And now for the tagging

Kylie @ Not Even a Bag of Sugar
I apologise if you have already been tagged and I have failed to notice but I always think of you at times like these as yours in the first blog I ever read and I would not be doing this if it was not for you. Thank you x

WOW! This post has taken me longer to write than any other. I wonder what my answers say about me?

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