I have put off writing this post, simply because writing it means that it’s really over, it’s finished, it’s in the past and that in turn makes me feel really fucking sad tbh. There was just so much excitement and build up bounding off the walls, dripping from everyone’s tongues and limitless nervous energy vibrating through social media – OH MY GODZ I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR – I DON’T HAVE A HOTEL ROOM – WHERE IS THE FUCKING BREWERY ANYWAY - SQUEEEEEE I’M SO EX.CIT.ED times a gazillion.
Now, nothing, just a massive come down, a decimated goody bag and the delicious urge to sneak a look at the calender and count down the days to BritMums Live 2014.
With a bag brimming full of low self-esteem, a new (bad) haircut and my heart doing a very enthusiastic Macarena somewhere in my throat and my tongue pretty much lodged deep in my stomach, I rocked up to a bar just a quick skip and jump down the road from the BritMums Live venue with a vacant look in my eyes and a vague idea that there would be some bloggers inside.
And there, before my eyes, were bloggers, a whole table of them. There. Actually there. I recall poking Laura in the arm and whimpering, “Hiiii, I’m Cas…” Everyone was lovely, and I cannot thank Mary enough for calling me over to her and giving me a big, welcoming hug and being my supportive anchor in the sea of women I sort of recognised from stalking them on my phone when I can’t sleep.
It’d be a barefaced lie to say I remember much more than that. This is where bullet points are needed. We like bullet points. They’re totally easy for me to write (read – lazy) and satisfying for you to read innit.
- I have a major, major girl crush on Annie. She held my hand, gave me a pep talk in the loos, plied me with booze, poked my boobs (affectionately, I think) and really forced my pelvic floor to really work from making me laugh so much.
- Helen and Steph left me a bit starstruck.
- I still don’t like Kirstie Allsopp. Soz.
- Gin goes surprisingly well with cherryade. Good call Alice.
- There is something utterly bizarre, terrifying and so, so wonderful about someone recognising you and telling you how much they love what you write and urging you to write more. Thank you to every single person that was ridiculously kind to me and my little blog.
- Falling up the stairs while schmoozing with a PR isn’t exactly ideal.
- I didn’t win the award and I don’t actually care. Honestly. I know I’m wandering into epic cliché territory by claiming that it’s enough to be nominated, and sat in that huge, noisy room whooping and clapping furiously until my hands felt as if they’d been whipped all while watching good friends collect their own awards, but seriously, that was more than enough.
- Donna saved my actual life with her bizarre little phone charger gadget thing from the future. Thank you!
- Jen storming up to me and demanding POKE MY FACE, POKE MY FACE made my night.
- Drinking more wine than I have in erm, years, could
have beenmost definitely was a mistake.
- And pre-ordering the healthy option from Pizza Express a few days before, thinking I was being all fucking smug was a big, huge mistake and was of no more help at soaking up all the alcohol consumed than chucking a bit of budget kitchen roll at the river bloody Thames. There was nothing else for it but to guiltily eat stolen cupcakes on the floor of my hotel room in my pyjamas.
- Never, ever kid yourself that you’ll wake up at a reasonable time naturally without a small child dive bombing your face for the first time in four years. Always call reception the night before for a wake up call and a shit tonne of coffee ready to be administered by IV.
- There is possibly nothing more satisfying than getting your name printed on a bottle of Coke right before your eyes.
- Biscuits for coffee exist. And they are good.
- Giant penguins from Madagascar are somewhat shit your pants scary.
- Sitting next to Katy Hill, actual Katy Hill owner of perfect teeth is surreal to the max, actual Katy Hill.
- Having a massive brain fart and not being able to form proper, formed sentences while you’re trying to create a good impression, only makes you look scared / sad / worried / vacant. Honestly I was a bajillion miles from it.
- Finally meeting Amanda, after all I knew it took to get her there, was shamazeballs.
- Special mentions for Hannah, Jo, Sonya, Rachel, Emily and Lewis for being so bloody lovely.
- You can get goody bag shoulder, it’s a bit like tennis elbow, but much, much worse. #Fact.
- Not being able to say goodbye properly to everyone as I had to get home earlier than I’d hoped was a bit shit, but a huge hug from Mummy Barrow seemed like a good way to go.
- Getting on the train, watching the towering grey blocks of London roll past to eventually turn to endless green fields gave me butterflies to be home.
- And pulling up outside my house, to find Bean with his beautiful face squashed against the window waiting for me, running to the car before I’d even managed to collect my signed books and squashy dinosaur, hit me like a ton of bricks at the realisation of just how much I’d bloody missed him.
BritMums Live was incredible. It was real life Twitter, to laugh, to cry, to SQUEEEEE, to meet so many fabulous people who were only pictures on my screen only a few hours before and turn them into real individuals that I admire so much. It was overwhelming, it was too much and not enough and somewhere in the middle all at the same time. I finally felt worthy to be called a blogger and as if I was a small part of something huge.
And I had a fucking blast.
Ginormous apologies if I’ve forgotten anyone, but please know that each and every one of you that I spoke to, SQUEEEED with and made me feel welcome made my weekend. And a massive THANK YOU to Hillarys for sponsoring me and making it all happen.
Over and OUT.