HeraldScotland:

“I am off to London in July to do a live show,” I say on the phone to my mates with a mixture of happiness and fear.

I can’t wait to get back on stage and at the same time, I am petrified of facing the world again. I have spent a year doing comedy to my own face into a phone on Zoom with a small sausage dog staring at me from the sofa bemused with her head cocked watching me. She also yawns loudly and people can hear her. It’s hard work.

Trying to crack punchlines to complete silence as my late dad stares at me from the lounge wall, is not the best audience for my ego. You can’t hear the audience on Zoom, all you can see is tiny images of people in their living room staring passively as they drink gin and you can tell they are trying to figure out if you are in your pyjamas. I even have to wear a bra, which is something I rarely do nowadays because ….why would you need to, unless the Amazon man is coming today?

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Comedy is hard enough live, because when you can't hear laughter you genuinely panic inside and you start running around in your head like you’re naked in a supermarket looking for knickers searching for a story or something that will make you sound funny. Now, imagine that for 20 minutes of silence beside your welsh dresser with your dead dad smiling at you. 'Tough gig' is the phrase of the day.

My other big fear is going out into the world and being near people. I am convinced I have become agoraphobic, like many people during this pandemic, I am frightened to be in crowded places, scared of people who might cough and worry endlessly that I will bring back a virus that will kill my family.

All my London pals are like “Great, finally, let’s have lunch and go out to dinner and have great big hugs, I have missed you” and I am shouting back “YEAH” but inside my head am screaming “No, please don’t touch me, I can’t leave the flat, lets just zoom”

I genuinely can’t wait to get on stage and hear laughter and the good news is, I am alone on stage, nobody can touch me, but am also nervous about being around so many people. I don’t think I am alone in this issue; I know lots of folk who are now ingrained with the “Stay Two Alsatians Apart”.

HeraldScotland:

I know that many covid rules will still be in place to keep people safe but am just absolutely jittery and what if when I do get back onstage and nobody laughs, because, for a whole year, many angry men with flags for faces have been telling me am ‘not funny’ online. What if they are right? What if I am fat and stupid and orphanages burning down create more giggles than me? How will I cope?

Well, I am going to have to just knuckle down and get on with it, there are people out there working on the front line during the height of this deathly plague and I should shut up moaning.

My other issue is, nothing I own fits me. Yes, I may have eaten the entire Italian menu from Eusebi’s deli and chugged on more daily calories than a Sumo wrestler, my pants legs are cutting me like cheese wire and I have a special “eating tent” dress that gives me room to consume.

Boredom eating has become a competitive sport in my household and I am winning. We have replaced fatty snacks with healthy fruit and I can now peel and eat an orange in bed in the dark which isn’t something I never thought I would achieve.

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My husband was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes last year. He controlled his diet, lost weight and it sorted itself. He was never that heavy to start with but he has amazing self-control and it makes me really jealous that he can just apply will power and heal himself when I genuinely can’t sleep if there’s a tub of uneaten ice cream in the freezer. I will stand in my pants eating ice cream as I stare at a 6am sunrise with no regard to how I will ever wear non-elasticated jeans in my near future.

Our wee miniature sausage dog Honey is also carrying too much timber for a small animal and she’s been put on a diet too, and that is so hard. She has these huge brown pleading eyes and cute wee dance she does when I eat dinner. The vet explained that if she doesn’t lose a kilo her wee legs will be damaged, so I have to be very tough on her as I stuff bacon rolls into my mouth and mumble “Honey, I can’t feed you, it’s not healthy and this food is bad for you” and I can see her face staring at me with utter disdain. If she could speak (and sometimes I make voiceover videos where she can) she would call me a fat greedy hypocrite and she would be correct. Then she tilts her cute head and taps her sharp toenails into my stockinged feet. I can’t wait until the dog groomers resume and they can clip her claw/ hooves.

We take her walks around the car park to exercise her and I thought she was doing so good when I saw her eagerly run into a fenced garden, when I caught up with her, she was stood sniffing a dead pigeon that looked like a bust pillow and I am sure she was about to eat it. This is a dog that won’t eat anything but organic grain-free venison wet food, so things must be getting to her.

So, 2021 is to become my challenge year, I will find the funny and I will need to stop eating a small fruit loaf as I watch TV.