...which is lovely and reassuring.
We decided not to go anywhere in the holidays, partly because Small Sprog won't fly and partly because I don't have any spare cash! I'm glad we didn't go anywhere in the uk - which would have been our only option - as the weather's been rubbish. So here we are at home, and although not very exciting it has been like going back years.
Tall Girl and I used to cook and bake together in the long school holidays. They always felt long back then because I was with them all the time and often their dad worked for a good bit of it, so it was me and them - comfy and easy together.
So yesterday, when I baked the second sticky toffee pudding of the week, a vivid memory came to mind of cooking, all those years ago, with Tall Girl when she wasn't so tall. I distinctly remember her standing on a small stool, siring the pan of hot, sticky caramel on the stove top, a little cautious because she's scared of hot things - it only feels like yesterday. And now, today, we cooked together - it's hard to admit but she is taller than me and she bakes a mean scone! It felt restorative, happy, comfortable, right and so good I want to cry. I'm so very grateful to have her still here with me, she has grown beautiful and we rub along well together.
We have shared so much. We are close. I have always thought that from the day she was born it was like an invisible bit of elastic held us together. She never got lost, she was too scared to venture very far, and sometimes I found this hard. I am older now and maybe wiser and I treasure every moment - perhaps it is because I can see the end? So when we were looking at baby photos the other night together, I realised that I don't think I loved her enough when she was little. I had post natal depression but I'm not sure it was all to do with that - I was not a natural mother. I loved her, very much but I was too busy and maybe not entirely happy. But now, especially now, I am getting to know her as an adult. I like what I have met, a different person to what I expected to come out of that small and scared little thing and I love her with all my heart.
So do I have enough love for another few children in the mix? If things go to plan - and who knows? - there will be another 3 in the mix, albeit one who is too old to live at home.
On Monday I was with Tall Girl and Gee, my partners eldest, having our nails done as a treat for his birthday! "I thought I'd hate you!" She told me
"I thought you'd hate me too" I said
we laughed together and the nice lady in the nail bar couldn't believe - when my partner and son appeared - that we weren't already a family. Later the youngest turned up - just 15 - with her cousin and so we were 7 for lunch. She was right the nail bar lady- it did feel very much like we were already a family, and a happy one at that.
I'm pretty sure I have enough love left - I am blessed