This morning I went out shopping with my mum and The Boy. It wasn't a massive trip anywhere special, we weren't after anything specific, and no amazing bargains were purchased (apart from the Christmas cooking book that we bought in Matalan, and the cherry liquers in Marks and Spencer).
I've come home and I'm exhausted; it's a grey, Wintery day and it's cold. The thermometer on my car dashboard said 8°C but I think that was it's goal rather than reality. The Boy is currently nestled soundly asleep in his cot upstairs, I should be taking the opportunity to have a nap, and the dishwasher is whirring away in the background.
I know you're wondering why I'm telling you all this but I've just opened my inbox and seen a post notification from someone that I genuinely consider to be a friend, were it not for technological and geographical confines. I scanned it briefly to get a gist of its contents before I've opened it in a browser to read and comment on. However, I'm in tears already. In this post, she talks about the pain of losing her mother, and that is one of my greatest fears.
Fear, or acknowledged eventual outcome?
I dread the day that my mum doesn't turn up with a loaf of bread and some milk because "I thought you might be short of them". Or phones and says "come on, let's go to Matalan." Or rings because she wanted to rant about something that my father has done (normally breathing to be honest). My mum is one of my best friends and as much as I may groan about the fact that she gave The Boy fishfingers for lunchtime instead of ham, I cannot imagine how it would feel to not have that in my life.
We're inordinately lucky that my mum looks after The Boy while I work and never once have I ever thought it to be about the money. In all honesty, if she couldn't have him then I wouldn't work. That's for various reasons of which I won't go into now, however I'm lucky that that's never been an issue. It was always assumed on everyone's part that she would look after him and she does it brilliantly.
She is the one who taught him how to do a jigsaw. She's the one who taught him how to draw a 'kiss'. I don't have a problem with any of it. And despite me inwardly groaning at the mess when I get home at 5pm and find my 66 year old mother on her knees pouring imaginary cups of tea, I also smile and don't mind because it means they've been playing all day long.
The Boy adores her. She adores him. Rightly, I adore her because she's my mum.
And I don't know where I'd be without her.