‘The laughter lines I could handle, but this feels like my body’s ultimate betrayal’

Sound Off: Sarah Breen

Despite a robust social life, I managed to sail through my 20s with no more than a few hangovers. I watched on as friends writhed in agony, choking back Motilium while I breezed out of bed in search of fried food and the next big party.

I’d like to tell you it was because I alternated every alcoholic drink with a glass of water and knew the one that was one too many, but that would be a lie. Au contraire, as a baby journalist, every night presented a new bar to try, a new product to celebrate, a new reason to go on the lash.

Those days, let me tell you, are a distant memory. Reader, I am speaking to you from beyond the grave, because last weekend I died. For context, I don’t get out much anymore. The first baby stymied my social life but the second, born in January, was the real nail in the coffin. Now, at 35, I only leave the house after dark on very rare and special occasions.

This past Saturday was one: a get-together with my oldest friends to toast some recent achievements in the gang. I hadn’t socialised in months; I was raring to go. It started with champagne (elegant!) and ended on Sunday morning with me vomiting out my front door (not elegant). This is partly because we don’t have a downstairs loo, but mostly because ageing has ruined my stamina. And there was a five-course dinner in the middle, by the way, lest anyone accuse me of not lining my stomach.


The laughter lines I could handle, but this feels like my body’s ultimate betrayal. Nights out now are rare and wonderful and party season is fast approaching. I think I’ll be washing my hair for December – unless anyone can install a loo under the stairs?

Sarah Breen is the co-author with Emer McLysaght of the novel Oh My God What A Complete Aisling