• Clare

In which I reveal my biggest disappointment

Updated: May 3

Of course, we must all face disappointment at some point in our lives, but this particular ordeal left me despondent and defeated for months...



As humans, we don't just experience disappointment once or twice in our lives, we experience it hundreds, if not thousands of times. A lot of our experiences will be minor: reaching into the biscuit barrel to discover that there are only pink wafers left; getting into the shower to find someone has used all the hot water already; thinking that you've achieved a really decent speed during your run, only to discover later on Strava that your Best Mate's Dad was 2 minutes p/m quicker than you! On the whole, these incidents are pretty easy to overcome, but not all experiences are so inconsequential.


I was 12 years old when I had my first real life changing episode of disappointment. Disappointment that stayed with me for many years. I still think of it now as a poignant moment in my life. For on 31st May 1998, Geri Halliwell left the Spice Girls. I remember exactly where I was when I found out. On the steps of the Science Block at my Secondary School. The news was broken to my friends and I by Lewis, whom I had a massive crush on (more on that later). I remember feeling like I had been punched in the stomach. There were tears. There was hugging. There was a general feeling of dismay and anguish rippling through the students that day. The Teachers hadn't dealt with such unrest since one of the Sixth Form pupils had a breakdown over his A-Level exams and started running round the playground clucking like a chicken, the bullies jeering him on.



Needless to say, I cried myself to sleep that night. And when I say cried, I mean CRIED! Great, exaggerated sobs heaving from my chest, face shoved into a pillow that was ringing wet with my hot, salty tears. I prayed to God that he would, somehow, heal the rift between them, so that they could once again perform as the most awesome, powerful example of Girl Power that the world had ever seen. I still, to this day, can't understand why Geri leaving got to me as much as it did. After all, it was really Emma, aka Baby Spice, that was my favourite. Even at the tender age of 12, I knew that the band, as a foursome, would be a disaster. If im being completely honest, although it pains me to say it, "Goodbye" was seriously lacking. I have to admit, I found it too painful to listen to. Then there was "Holler" in 2000. Bet you'd forgotten about that one! I had as well, until I did a little research to confirm when "Goodbye" was released. Anyway, when you look back at the Spice Girls, you remember "2 become 1" and "Wannabe" as the greatest tunes to ever grace your ears. Not some half-hearted attempt at a tribute to someone who abandoned you!


There are a few other disappointments at that time that I feel are worthy of a mention. My unrequited love for the aforementioned Lewis. The crush that went on for a full two years - that's the whole of Year 7 and Year 8! I used to daydream about him, nightdream about him, draw little doodles of "CH loves LG forever x infinity" in my school books. Not once, but twice I plucked up the courage to ask him out and twice he rejected me! I remember handing him a note in R.E. the second time. It took all the courage I had and I'd been building myself up to it for a few weeks. My hands were sweaty and trembling as I struggled to maintain some decorum whilst Mr Sheridan prattled on about Hunukkah. After what seemed like an eternity, he finally handed the note back to me, his reply scrawled on the back in his perfect, curvy hand. "Sorry love (cheeky cockney accent), but your just not my type." I was heartbroken! I held myself together until the end of the lesson, then quickly dashed to the girls loos to mop my flowing tears. Not that the IZAL paper had much effect. (I still shudder when I think about that bloody tracing paper loo roll, the wee trickling all over your hand as you tried to perform a swift and effective wipe.)


Many years later, long after I married the Husband, I googled Lewis out of curiosity, to see whether or not he had found happiness with some gorgeous model. After all, he was witty, charismatic, hugely entertaining and could act and dance to boot. I should have read the signs then and there really, but at 12, I wasn't to know. To my enormous surprise, I discovered that Lewis was gay and was now performing in a highly successful West End Show. That part did not come as a surprise, but how had I not seen that he liked boys. After all, no other 12 year old boy, possessed the ability to be all the things that he was. They could just about mumble two words to a girl, forgot to apply deodorant each morning and were too preoccupied with whether or not they could get through a full sentence without their voices squeaking.


Other huge disappointments at the time included the man with the big ears becoming Prime Minister, Imaani representing the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest, England losing the penalty shoot out in the World Cup and discovering the meaning of "Sexual Relations!" thanks to President Clinton and "That Woman"...

Who or what has disappointed you the most? Leave me a comment below.


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