The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Absence Makes The Heart Unsettled …
November 7, 2012, 6:00 am
Filed under: Comment

Hello, how are you all?

I assume you have all had a turn for the worse now I’m back.

Oh well, shit happens.

Yes, I had an amazing time.

Yes, my Mum had a great birthday.

Yes, I miss her ridiculously.

Actually ‘ridiculously’ is the perfect choice of word because the feeling of loss I am experiencing right now is overwhelming.

Now of course, whenever you leave someone you love, you’re going to feel upset … but for some reason – despite having gone through this very scenario probably 100+ times over the past 17+ years – I feel it to a much greater degree this time.

Maybe it’s because she’s turned 80, which in my weird, twisted mind, qualifies her as being ‘properly old’ – I’m not sure – but despite knowing I’ll see her again in 3 months and that she is, fortunately, fit & well for her age … I’m finding it especially hard being back at work.

In China.

Miles away from her.

Sure, you could argue that is my choice – and I suppose it is – but life doesn’t always work out where every aspect of your life is satisfied and maybe that is why I am always so appreciative of our time together.

There’s something warm and lovely and reassuring knowing the people you love are just a wall away.

I know some people would find that idea horrendous, but not me.

I would have absolutely no problem if my Mum lived with me.

Sadly, she doesn’t feel the same way because when we asked her, she has said no.

However it’s not because she hates me or doesn’t want to live in China … it’s because she doesn’t want to feel like she is ‘imposing’ on my life, even though the words ‘my Mum’ and ‘imposing’ are impossible to put together.

Waking up and knowing I could say hello to my Mum and give her a big hug was wonderful.

Sitting in the lounge and knowing she was in the same room as me was incredibly comforting.

Watching her face as she did the crosswords was just really special.

Little things.

Everyday things.

Normal life things.

While technology has definitely made it easier to ‘manage’ being away from the ones you love, it never can replace the feeling you get being there … in the same place and space.

Don’t get me wrong, technology is amazing and wonderful but one of it’s problems – at least in relationship maintenance – is that it encourages unnatural interactions … a feeling of needing to say or do something … a never ending stream of contrived, stilted conversations, designed to ‘fill a moment’ rather than an emotional void.

Of course that isn’t true for everyone – including me – but the fact is, the deepest, most important relationships aren’t based purely on continual verbal communication, but emotional closeness from just being there.


Sharing space, time and moments.

And technology hasn’t quite managed to achieve that yet.

While I am thankful for Skype and email & everything else that lets me stay in constant touch with my Mum, I am eternally grateful I was able to spend last week with my Mum.

In her house. In her lounge. In her kitchen.

It’s something I treasure.

Because I miss her.

Love you Mum, see you soon.



Good to have you back Rob. I’m glad you and your Mum had such a good time together. This is another very sweet post. It’s definitely hard to live far from your family (unless you have a brother like mine) but I particularly like your point about technology aiding relationship management rather than nurturing rich and textured and genuine emotional fulfilment. But we’re working on that.

Comment by Pete

sure you are pete. sure you fucking are.

Comment by andy@cynic

So Pete,

more of this:

instead of this:

I like how you guys are spiking the punch these days..

Comment by niko

We’re not allowed to refer to google wave in public Niko.

Good product. Bad timing/launching/hyping.

But I take your point. Except the spiking.

Comment by Pete

if anything can help “nurture rich and textured and genuine emotional fulfilment” through technology, it is spiking some punch..

I mean we’ve at some point livened up skype/hangouts with some cough syrup and schweps, right?

Comment by niko

nikos back causing fucking mayhem with his sexual prowess suggestions. maybe everything will be alright afterfuckingall.

except for the single ladies located near whichever south american country hes fucking hiding out in these days. and the chicks anyfuckingwhere near billy.

Comment by andy@cynic

campbell. as good as it is to learn you treated your mum like the precious person she is. as good as it is to read that shes still got all her marbles at 80 to say she doesnt want to move in with you. as good as it is to hear you slagging off fucking technology. we have a fucking election going on here and im shitting myself that romney twat stands a chance.

in fucking fact the only good thing about him is hed fuck the chinese government off within 10 fucking seconds of getting in which means theyd kick all foreigners out of commieland. now that might sound as funny as fuck to me until i realise that might fucking mean youd come back to yankland so theres a fucking reason to vote obama if i ever heard one.

Comment by andy@cynic

come on campbell, cant you fix it for obama? you can manipulate every other fucker to give you things you want. and dont fucking deserve.

Comment by andy@cynic

this really is quite a nice post.

especially the middle finger to tech.

i knew i was ahead of my fucking time.

Comment by andy@cynic

That’s a policy platform that all of America could get behind.

Comment by George

If it stopped Romney getting in, I’d happily have my honour used/abused.

Comment by Rob

It’s an election? I thought it was a bring your senile, old, tea party loving, uncle to the press day. Nice post Rob but I’m not like Pete and George, I’m devastated you’re back. Life goes to shit again, which is a taster of how life will be if the senile, old, tea party guy wins.

Comment by Billy Whizz

obama won. the chinese can keep campbell. the world is safe. thank fuck.

Comment by andy@cynic

Good to have you back Robert, especially with such a good post. When I read the first few sentences I feared it might be one of your more superficial entries, but no. It’s emotional and thought provoking. Apart from the obvious reason you should spend more time with your Mum, this blog post highlights why you should spend more time with your Mum.

Comment by George

I agree with all the comments on here. But I agree with Andy and surprisingly Billy’s most.

Comment by DH

Ahhhhh, it’s nice to know nothing changes, regardless how long I am away for.

Comment by Rob

thats because no one comes here for you campbell.

Comment by andy@cynic

Very nice read Robert. I’m glad you had a wonderful time with your wonderful mother. I happen to agree with your comment relating to technology. The richness of a relationship comes from emotional intimacy, not purely the constancy of contact.

Comment by Lee Hill

How’s that work for this blog?

Comment by John

this blog is the exception to every fucking rule.

Comment by andy@cynic

This post makes me very happy.
It even, very nearly, punctured Andy’s grumpy old man act
My parents live in Cornwall, which isn’t a continent away, but it feels like it sometimes.
I miss my kids when I don’t see them for 24 hours, your Mum must have been so pleased to see you

Comment by northern

almost as pleased as when she managed to get rid of the sponging bastard.

so campbell, how many docos and pointless fucking gadgets did you end up paying excess baggage for? oh i forgot, you dont have to pay that when youve wangled free uber fucking class tickets from mr gullible. yes lee, thats you im calling out.

Comment by andy@cynic

cornwall? whereafuckingbouts in cornwall? not st ives. dont tell me your parents are my neighbours. i swear to fucking god i thought they had a bunch of pigeons and cups of northern bastard tea last time i was there. fortunately that was 2002.

by the way, all the republican twats are moping around like nottingham forest fans. its fucking fantastic. time to i went and provoked some of the bad loser, stupid bastards.

Comment by andy@cynic

Precisely st Ives 3 streets up from porthmeor beach

Comment by Northern

Lovely post Rob. Glad you and your Mum had a good time together. I won’t ruin the mood by responding to your technology insults.

Comment by Bazza

Comments are closed.