You stand alone in your empty, empty house, once full of noise and complaint and laughter and asking and telling but now; nothing. Now that your three children have all left home, it is so quiet. Your husband is out, at the pub again. He never really spent much time with you, but now even less. It’s as if, now that your job is done, he feels he doesn’t need to even pretend to love you any more. And in a way he’s right, it is all done. You tried a reading club, and bowls, and walking, but it all seemed so futile, so very sad. There’s really nothing left for you to do anymore but listen to far-away stories and far-away lives. You slump into the sofa, turn on a daytime soap and bleakly crack open a triple-pack of jaffa-cakes.
This is an excerpt from Belly Up!