What a privilege it is to be here on Chris’ blog amongst all these wonderful people. It is a wonderful opportunity for me to tell you a little about myself.
Well, my name is Judy. Actually, it is Judith but no one EVER calls me that, except perhaps my mum when I was younger and she was mad. My family and most of my friends call me Jude except one of my nieces who calls me Scrude sometimes (she likes to rhyme as well)! I get a bit cross though if my nieces and nephews they forget to add the ‘aunty’ on most of the time (even though some of them are in their 30s)!
Talking of my family, I am the second youngest of six children, which meant that I didn’t really get much of a chance to get a word in edgeways, especially as I was a shy child. It didn’t help that at six years old when my parents divorced, we moved from Somerset to Lancashire and I couldn’t understand the accent!
I have always loved words though, and from a young age liked to make up little rhymes, some of which the teacher would read out in class, much to my embarrassment, and pride. I loved primary school and always worked hard. Secondary school was a different matter though.
We had moved down to Kent from Manchester when I was 11 years old and I started secondary school with yet another accent (it is funny how you pick them up when children). Again, it made me feel a little shy but I did manage to overcome it and do really well both socially and academically.
We did not have the 11+ when I was at school although it has since been reintroduced. For those that don’t know, it was a test that they gave children of 11 years old to determine whether they were suitable to attend a grammar school Instead, we were judged at 13 years old on our schoolwork and test results and it was decided that I should go to our Grammar school, which was for girls.
Suffice to say, I hated it and got away with doing as little word as possible not revising for any exams or showing any interest in any subject, except of course, English and a little bit in Spanish and French. This was due to my love of language and words. I did read the books that we were supposed to for our exam and coursework, and I actually put a little bit of effort into the lessons.
I left school as soon as I could at 16 and after a few odd jobs ended up joining the Women’s’ Royal Army Corps when I was 18. That taught me a lot as well as fostered my love for routine and order, as well as punctuality. I bloody hated bulling my boots and shoes though, especially as some klutz ended up treading up the back of your shoes on parade and scratching it all off!
Other jobs I have had are working in a jobcentre and a benefit office dealing with unemployment claims; booking ferry crossings for Stena Sealink, working as a waitress in Pontins holiday camp when I was 16 (I HATED it); dishwasher, manager of a kebab shop, I worked in a school manning the student desk, where students would come with any concerns they had, and of course nursing, which is what I do now.
Meanwhile I was still writing these poems and rhymes. Whenever it was someone’s birthday, or a wedding I wrote a verse about it tailoring it to the person so that it was totally about them and the things they could relate to. I always dreaded standing up and reciting them, stumbling over my words at times, but I did it as a tribute to them, and my poems always went down well. In fact, people often asked me to write personal ones for colleagues that were leaving work, or other occasions, which I always did.
It is my way of showing my feelings about a person or a situation. I find that words come much easier to me if I make them into a rhyme, rather than a story. Nearly all of the verses that I write have humour running through them. I love to make people smile or laugh and it gives me tremendous pleasure when they enjoy my poems.
I suffer from depression, which has often crept up on me unawares and has been difficult to shake off. This has rendered me virtually housebound and isolated (my choice, as I do not want to go out or socialise when I get a bad episode). It was because of that my blog Edwina’s Episodes was born.
My sister mentioned that for some people, blogging was a good way to cope with depression. Now I had not even heard of blogging, but I looked into it, and as is my way launched myself right at, it all guns blazing! I didn’t want anyone to know who I was, but wanted a catch name so went with my middle name Edwina (named after a mad aunty), and I thought ‘episodes’ went well with it, and also meant little instalments of what I got up to.
It rather grew from there really, I learned more and more about blogging, met and interacted with some wonderful people, and after a while decided to ‘reveal’ myself. It rather felt funny being called Edwina even though I got used to it, it wasn’t my name. My blog was all about honesty and it felt wrong to me almost being someone else.
I took part in some blogging challenges as well as NaNoWriMo. I am still working on the manuscript I wrote for that, and I actually hope to be able to publish it in the future.
As my blog is all about trying to find the humour in everyday life, I often find that a rhyme is just the job! After all, I do think that it instantly perks things up, and often brings a smile, even if it is just for the silliness of it!
The fact that I am knocking on a bit now, and have had quite a bit of life experience in one way or another, I find that there is always plenty to write about! I want others to be able to relate to it as well, and see the funny side of some of the niggles and stresses of life.
I decided to collate some of them together and put them in a book , Rhymes of the Times, I wanted it to be bright, cheerful and fun, something that you could pick up whenever you needed cheering up. With that in mind, Chris designed me the perfect cover, vibrant and eye-catching.
Shhh don’t tell him, I am planning to do a series!
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