When I was a child, I loved Mother’s Day. More specifically, I loved Blue Peter and never more so than when the presenters uttered the magical words “Mums leave the room” before they unveiled this year’s craft creation. I’m actually rubbish at crafts, so my Mum would feign delight at the latest wrapping paper, matchbox … Read more
You never think it will happen to your family until it does.
Suddenly we were locked down. Our holiday was cancelled, Fred’s central line meant he could no longer go swimming. We were not allowed to travel anywhere more than 30 minutes from our hospital. I carried a thermometer in my handbag to check for temperatures.
How we talk about children’s cancer matters. It’s easy to worry about saying the right thing, the wrong thing, and often people end up saying nothing at all, which is the worst of all. The language used usually involves wars, battles, fighting, bravery. In many ways it’s odd. We never say a child lost their battle against an articulated lorry, but cancer it seems is up for the fight.
There are many kinds of mother you can be. Tiger mother, Alpha, Helicopter. I’ve never really seen myself as any of them, and certainly tried to avoid a few. If I had to classify my parenting style, I’d say that I carried stuff. To give it a festive flavour, if this were a nativity, I’d be the donkey.
A month ago today, I was sitting in Regent’s Park, reading a book, drinking coffee. I had an evening at the theatre planned. For the first time in years I felt that everything was under control. I’d spent the previous evening watching Barbra Streisand. I would never to make it to the theatre. 6 hours … Read more