Roy’s finding that there is some pleasure to be had in the ability to just stand and stare
Arather sad little piece this time. I’ve had to pull out of the proposed tour of Waiting for God the play I was so looking forward to taking on the road. The play’s tour will carry on with an old pal, Jeffrey Holland, taking my place. I am heartbroken about having to leave but it was on advice from our doctor. I was suffering from something so many of us do these days. Pressure. In the world today the pace of life is so great that we sometimes just can’t keep up with it and it certainly isn’t the sole preserve of my business. Up to the day we started rehearsals I was running all over the place doing all sorts of jobs so I could afford to go on tour. After panto I did a new TV show with the famous “growing old disgracefully” Red Hatters. (I wrote about this smashing group of over 50-year-old lady tearaways a few columns back.) I took part in The Bristol Slapstick Festival, did several Roy and Debbie Hudd chat shows (which, hopefully we’ll be doing at Yours Live later this year) and I recorded the new run of the Radio 4 serial, Home Front. I did radio shows with Graham Norton and Ken Bruce, plus dozens of interviews plugging the play and on TV Good Morning Britain. This one of course was live in the early morning and I complained to Piers Morgan that the only reason I came into the theatre in the first place was to avoid getting up early! I recorded my bits and pieces for Broadchurch, did a couple of fundraising events and had a few cups of tea. I started rehearsals for the play and was cream crackered by lunchtime of the first day. My doctor, who I swear by – and sometimes swear at, especially when she informs me I’m not 25 any more – (how could she tell?) says I must learn to pace myself. Not easy when you love so dearly everything you’ve been doing for the last 59 years. But now I have to. Learning to deal with panic attacks and stopping anxiety is a good start and I am trying with the help of an article, recommended by Sharon, from a previous Yours by Lizzy Dening and Life Coach Anna Williamson. Simple things such as breathing properly, a bit more exercise and making time to stand and stare. After just a couple of weeks I’m coping better and beginning to see the wood through the trees. I quote one of my favourite bits of advice from the piece… ‘Schedule things into your life on a regular basis that make you feel good, then stick to them.’ Giving my missus a cuddle always makes me feel good but I’m not too sure if she’d put up with me sticking myself to her – so I’ll get rid of the superglue! The pressure is off and, after a few more weeks of blissful relaxation I assure you I’ll be back wallowing in fun and frolics again. You have been warned!
‘My doctor, who I swear by – and sometimes swear at – says I must learn to pace myself…’