I have a confession to make, I have a little obsession. It all started on a breastfeeding facebook page, someone mentioned a fictional TV series which shows a woman hand expressing, I though "normalising breastfeeding! This I have got to see", and this is where my obsession began. I watched the first two series of Outlander on Amazon Prime and I was totally hooked.
Let me give you a little background information. The series is based on the books by Diana Gabaldon. They center around the main character Claire who goes back in time (stay with me) from the 1940's to the 1700's in the Highlands of Scotland. Like any good story she falls in love and the series revolves around their relationship and their adventures through time, facing life and death situations. It's romantic, thrilling, erotic, exciting, I haven't been able to put the books down for the past three months.
So why am I telling you about this? Well apart from the fact that I want every friend of mine to join me in my obsession so I have people to geek out with over it, it has actually changed my life. I know that sounds dramatic, and probably makes me sound like a massive loser, but it's true. Let me tell you how.
The relationship in the book between Claire and her Highland husband Jamie is perfection. It is every woman's fantasy of a perfect relationship, and I suppose that's the point of fiction isn't it, to give us a fantastical alternate reality. At first it bothered me, I started asking myself "well why isn't my relationship like this? How come my husband doesn't say all these terribly romantic things to me?", and then it struck me, these characters are constantly facing life or death situations which we rarely come across in our everyday lives (thank goodness) and thus they are given many opportunities where professing their undying love for each other is pertinent. And on reflection if I had to choose between a life filled with loving sentiments, yet being constantly in fear of losing your significant other, or a a life with professions of love written in a yearly valentines card, yet secure in the knowledge that the loss of ones husband to execution, murder, or falling down a cliff, I would rather take the latter.
I reflected on this and realised that, in fact, if my husband and I were constantly living in fear for our lives, he more than likely would profess his love for me more often and without inhibition in the most spectacularly romantic ways possible. This led me to appreciate my husband more, because I know he loves me and has strong feelings, but that he just doesn't profess them that often. I also remind myself that the book is written by a woman; for women, so she is writing what we want to hear, not what men actually say.
Reading the books has definitely sparked fresh joy in my relationship with my husband, new appreciation of everything he does for me and our family, I am trying to love him more and better and it's made me feel amazing about our relationship. It's definitely inspired me in the bedroom too if you know what I mean.
Another way this series has changed my life is through a shift in my feelings about my children, in relation to my husband. In those days children were seen as far less significant than these days, children were quite often seen as a bit of a nuisance, and in the story our couple are separated from their offspring. This made me realise that, as much as I love my children, one day they are going to leave home and it will just be me and my husband again, and with that in mind, the need and importance of nurturing the relationship with my husband, because that's the relationship I chose. We chose to have children, but we didn't chose the people they are. I sometimes see parents treating their children like little gods that must be appeased (not any of my friends by-the-way) and they quite simply aren't, they are little people who are going to go their own way one day and all we can do is prepare them for that and hope for the best, our relationships with our partners are the enduring ones and in some ways are more important than the relationship we have with our children.
Next reading the books has really helped to scratch a little selfsufficiency/prepper/survivalist itch that I haven't scratched for a long time. I made some rosehip cordial yesterday!!
It's also motivating me to lose the baby weight; I am buying myself little Outlander related treats when I reach every weight loss target (Today I am buying myself a Sassenach car decal. Read the books if you want to know what I am on about here. Seriously read the books.)
Finally this series of books and the TV show have been an absolutely fantastic escape. Not that I have a life that I need to escape from but during the end of my pregnancy and the first weeks with a new baby having a place I can retreat to away from the craziness was and is so incredibly valuable. I am a strong believer in mum's (and anyone actually) having some sort of diversion from every day life be that painting, sewing, cars, football, whatever it's an important part of what makes us human and just generally makes people more interesting I think.
So the other day my mum said to me "I think your becoming obsessed with Outlander" and I was like "And that's a problem because...?" Because I literally cannot think of a single reason why being obsessed would be a bad thing, it's changed my life for the better, made me a happier person and improved my love life. Who could possibly complain? So now I am on a mission to get all my friends obsessed so I have other people to geek out with over this amazing series, if you have Amazon Prime you can watch it there or on Sky Starz, but even better are the books by Diana Gabaldon. Get on board friends! Get on Board.
And as for me, well I am waiting on series 3 which will be out next spring and continuing to devour the books, I am currently on book 4 (there are 8) and Gabaldon is writing number 9 as we speak so I have plenty to keep me going.
Now I am just going to leave you with this: