Breaking Free

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

There is an expression; in vino veritas. In wine truth.

Last night I discovered that there’s a whole lot of veritas in champagne and rum too.

Miss Rose and I had our first sleepover at a friend’s house. Miss Rose handled the change in routine far better than expected, settling in the travel cot at the end of Imelda’s Mum’s bed pretty quickly, then snoring beautifully. I was genuinely impressed as I was worried she would be far more unsettled by the change.

Imelda’s Dad was left in charge of three sleeping children as I was removed from the building to enjoy a night out. I actually did enjoy it once I’d accepted the fact I wasn’t wearing my pyjamas and listening intently for any noises from Miss Rose. A big change for me!

We had dinner, then cocktails, then meandered our way home to watch films (this was when I was allowed to put my pyjamas on! Yay!)

However… Whilst I am a regular drinker, enjoying a glass of wine a few evenings a week, I have apparently lost the awareness of limitations I had when I was a more avid night out goer. Being mum has left me with the ability to overdo it in style without even realising until it’s too late.

The truth I poured into my glass is that perhaps I am handling my marital breakdown worse than I realised, that I am impressively insecure, and that I like falling asleep randomly on rugby players. Though I already knew that last one. Poor Imelda’s Dad only learned it in the early hours of this morning however.

I am also reliably informed that when Miss Rose woke up I hid in the bathroom crying because I couldn’t be a mother right now… Fortunately for all concerned Imelda’s Mum handles her drink far better than Rose’s mum and is always able to be a mother.

Several sick bowls and some resonating snores later I returned to the state of motherhood. Miss Rose and I watched CBeebies, whilst I drank coffee and pretended I wasn’t dying inside, and life returned to normal with Miss Rose in blessed, beautiful ignorance of the utter ass her mother made out of herself.

I hope so have another sleepover one day. It’s good for Miss Rose to experience a change in environment, and it’s good for me to get out of the house after dark. I am hoping, however, that next time I will have a little more self control. I do think I needed to let a few of the crazies out though, and I was lucky enough to be with people I love and trust when I did it. And grateful that Miss Rose has other people who love her and can care for her when I’m in no fit state to.

You can check out all my contact info an links on, I’m on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so you can get in touch on there, as well as find links to all my work. There’s also which has all the work by both myself and Jonathan McKinney and loads of extra content such as background stories for different characters. If you want to subscribe on Patreon, its just $1 a month to help support our work and it also grants you access to our extra podcast a week, you can go to

Thanks as always for reading, and I’ll speak to you soon I hope!



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