Me and My Girl.250678_570857053625_418701518_n

This has a double meaning for me this year – it’s the name of a musical, but also it makes me think of my brand new girl; who, this time last year, was well on her way to arriving.

This time last year. Lordy.

This time last year seems literally, and I mean literally like yesterday. I’m sure most new parents feel like the first year of their baby’s life goes in so quickly, and it really does seem to have flown in for us. Of course, she’s not a year old just yet, but the final weeks before her birth are as strong in my memory as the birth itself, and I’m remembering them so clearly at the moment because an annual event is taking place for me and some of my friends.

Those reading this blog who know me personally, know of my passion and love for musical theatre, and I’ve been lucky enough to be a member of a local musical society called Fortwilliam Musical Society for the past 13 years, being involved onstage, playing roles in various productions as well as getting to try my hand at directing and producing our Youth productions in more recent years. Yes, that’s me in the middle a million years ago, playing Minnie Faye in ‘Hello, Dolly’ – credit to Niall Laverty for the pic!

dsc07826Of course, when Miss Amelia came along, my usual commitment of 3 evenings a week and Sunday afternoons spent at rehearsals, committee meetings and so forth went totally out the window – understandably so. But I remember my doctor telling me that it is important to try and keep up some hobbies after you’ve had a baby, and while it wouldn’t be realistic to be as heavily involved as I once was, I knew I still wanted to be a part of things this year, which is why I was so excited to attend a rehearsal of their upcoming production ‘Me and My Girl’, yesterday, in advance of it opening next week. It was so nice to bring Amelia with me to rehearsal, where she was so welcome – there is such a sense of family about our musical society, a sense of fun and a sense of belonging, a rare thing to find these days.

This time last year I was sitting backstage on a stool during our production of “Oliver!”, massive bump out front, swollen feet and constant heartburn, swigging Gaviscon, rubbing my tired eyes and aching muscles, while applying a prosthetic nose to Fagin and generally overseeing the makeup. Amelia’s Nana and the G Man kept reminding me to take it easy, and to be fair I barely moved from the stool, but I had to go, had to be there, because I knew it would be the last show in which I would be fully involved for quite some time to come. I knew the baby would take priority once it was born, and I felt I wanted to eke every last bit of fun out of my ‘last’ show with our company.

It’s going to be such a great show this year, and me and the G Man are looking forward to helping out backstage which will be nice, because it means we get to stay involved with the production, see our friends and enjoy the experience – I think I would actually, literally, cry into my pillow if I couldn’t be involved – so we have Nana to thank for babysitting, she’s a legend.

So, a massive ‘break a leg’ to all my FMS pals, I will be cheering you on from the wings and wishing I was on stage with you…but I’ll settle for a glass of wine on closing night 😉