Helen Lederer

Why you should be careful what you pray for

When I was ten I used to pray that I would be really, really popular at school. My prayer was so successful that every day I had to choose between five different groups in break who were all desperate to play with me. The choice was agonising. Leaving four groups disappointed — and cross — taught me to be careful what you pray for. Popular figures have greater enemies; mind you, there’s always Trump. Then, when I was a single, despo actress-writer type of person of 31, I decided I simply had to have a baby. So I started praying as an early insurance. I also attended a few mind-and-body weekend workshops to help with any shortfall of charisma — as a ‘top-up’. After three years of praying, I did indeed find myself not only with child…but also a loft conversion, a relationship and much larger clothing.

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