The Midults’ guide to…
What your bedside table says about you
There is an olde-world condom: from days of yore, in a land before time. Would it still work? Wanna give it a go?
THE SELF-HELP BOOKS
These take up 90 per cent of your bedside-table space – most were bought during the 10 years you spent searching for your true path. Some have titles like Codependent No More and The Five Love Languages. There’s the CBT exercise book that you filled out judiciously for one night and now stare at hoping that documented thoughts will magically equal Zen-like feelings. Plus dog-eared copies of The Rules – still not working. And The Secret – still a mystery.
THE OLDE-WORLDE CONDOM
From days of yore in a land before time. Past its sell-by date. Wedged in-between two shelves, as a fallen monument to hope over experience. Would it still work? Can they really go off? Wanna give it a go?
A CORN-UCOPIA OF DESPERATION
By which we mean cracked-heel cream, Bliss foot lotion (could be from the ’90s) and the most recent addition, a foot mask that once would have felt like a step too far but, given the way your heels lacerate your shins on a nightly basis, is now a necessity. Also some slightly sticky night socks. Probably cashmere. Definitely ruined.
TECH EQUIPMENT OF VARYING VINTAGE
So there’s a DVD player remote control – you no longer have a DVD player but you keep it just in case one emerges one day. A cable that could be for a) a fax machine link-up or b) the soothing breathing nightlight you bought for terrible insomnia but it just made you feel seasick until you broke it. Not forgetting chargers from three iphones ago. WHY DO THEY DO THAT?
One with CBD, one with essential oils, another with some kind of ancient English herb. Are they for your sore elbows? Your sore teeth? Your sore soul?
PILLS, PILLS, PILLS
If you shook your bedside table/self, it/you would rattle with pills. There is every iteration of sleeping pill that isn’t actually a sleeping pill: magnesium (powder and capsules), melatonin (the good stuff from Hong Kong) and two Xanax – you’re hanging on to them like a security blanket, a bit like those Liberty vouchers that you’ve had for two years but don’t dare spend. For if you do, the cupboard will be bare.
Approximately a million eye masks running the gamut from novelty (Sleeping Beauty) to silk and cashmere. They are all a bit loose and baggy these days: stretched by a cranium pulsating with panic and a skull thrashing about on the pillow. In fact they’re so loose that they tend to slip down and end up winding themselves around your neck. So that’s relaxing.
A little Moroccany pot full of ‘foreign’ money – lire or US dollars from when you used to travel a lot for work. And for fun.
Unwisely, we have left them to just… roam free in our bedside tables. Look at them rolling around the drawer, picking up bits of random dust and hair, which stick to the wax like we are miniature doll-makers. Not at all creepy.
All your attempts at journalling. Moan, moan, moan, man, moan, moan, moan, man, moan. Maybe you should try to get them published?
That you will soon take to be mended. Yes, you will. That is definitely going to happen. And a ‘commitment ring’ from the man you never married. Happily, because the gold has rubbed off. Just as your mother said it would...