My kids went back to school this week, my youngest for her first proper full day. I took the rudimentary school uniform picture in front of the blackboard in our kitchen and posted it to our family WhatsApp group. I sent it to their Nanny and the girls’ dad, who had already left for work. I ignored the ache in me which said the first person apart from their dad I would have sent it to, had she not been in here in person, would have been their Grandma.
I put the girls in the car and took them to school. They skipped in together holding hands and I watched them go, proud if a teensy bit heart sore, and set about distracting myself on my first full school day of freedom (I don’t work on Mondays).
I had a meeting at 10am about some Big Issues for Little People related bits and pieces (more to come on that later) and while I was online, a missed call from my other half. He had just called to see how the girls had got on going into school, but it was so much more than that. This isn’t something that used to happen as much when Mum was still here – not through a lack of caring about his daughters but in knowing that any angst or fears I may have had would have most likely been used up on her.
I have become an anxious Mum and wife in the 10 months since Mum died, more anxious than I would like to be – and certainly hope to be in the long run . So, I’m lucky that my other half has worked to understand this, and understand the new me, just as he always has in light of the various significant life changes we have dealt with in our time together.
It got me thinking about how many phases and reincarnations we live through as couples. Nobody really knows what the impact of a bereavement is going to be on the relationship that you rely on the most, and tend to assume, will almost certainly get you through it. Nobody tells you that with every significant loss you effectively become a new person to be understood and loved all over again by those around you.
It also led to the following words, which fell into my mind while my other half was putting our girls to bed one evening, and which I thought I would share as a little update here with you. Because it’s been a while, to be fair!
Routine at heart
Falling in love is easy to do
Because I know how to do it with you
We’ve been at it for years, on and off
(for different reasons and with more to tow)
And the return journey grows even more perilous
Until we make it back again, which we usually do
And I get to love the feelings again, the reasons, the view
Which all those years ago
First led me to you