Just before I travel, especially when alone, I get a bit anxious.
Scratch that, very anxious, I curl up like a little ball inside myself and I worry like crazy.
People are always surprised to hear that from me, I give off this air of confidence whilst inside I’m churning away, painfully!
This trip is a long one. Probably the longest I have ever left my youngest two kids. My oldest and I now being accustomed to separation, he lives and works the other side of the world to me. I say accustomed, but I will never be used to his being so far away and I still get that gut punch feeling every time I think about the distance or how much I miss him.
So, why am I rambling this time?
Nerves are one thing, we all hate leaving our children. Flying makes me a little uncomfortable. I shove the fear far down and try to pretend I am cool with it.
My fears are bigger now, the world is a scarier place. Walking the streets in major cities, going to a concert and just doing ordinary, everyday things can mean real danger. We can’t protect ourselves from it, we can’t see it coming and its right on most of our doorsteps.
I want to leave some words for my children. Y’know in case I don’t get to say it in person. I constantly tell them I love them, am proud of them but if they ever needed to just read those words, however old they are in years to come, here they are.
This isn’t supposed to be a negative post..I am sure I will be back home with my babies soon enough but I am sat here writing it with tears rolling down my face. I’m such a big baby.
James, my grown up, handsome boy. To say I am proud of you is an understatement. I could burst at the thought of all your achievements. Your courage to go after life, to take care of others as well as yourself, already and so very young. This is always a source of admiration for me. You weren’t born into the arms of a perfect mother. I was broken physically and a little mentally too. Not equipped for what lay ahead, my parenting skills had to be learned as I went along. Each day a battle into the unknown for you and for me. But I want you to know, that, that being said you were wanted, loved, you are one of MY greatest achievements.
I would give anything to go back to one day when you were small and just absorb all of you. Put all of my selfishness aside, the desires for life that I had as a very young girl who happened to be a Mother and just drink you in.
Your quiet, intelligent presence. Your patient interest in the world. The consideration you showed others and the love and maturity you always shared.
Often alone in a room full of children, you still enjoyed your own company. Entertaining yourself with your books and lego! You had to grow up fast. I could wish that away and rewrite all of your early experiences but then you wouldn’t be you, the young man you are today and I certainly don’t want to change a single thing about you.
You are loved, you must love others fully, with passion. Give all of yourself and never apologies for who you are, you are amazing.
My dear beautiful Alex. You came into this world kicking & screaming. You let us know that you had arrived & since that day your presence never goes unnoticed.
We are more alike than you would care to believe. I was a dreamer like you and had aspirations of being a singer, a dancer & a performer but probably only half the talent.
We’ve clashed and I admit I have tried to tame you in the past. It took me some time to accept your ‘crazy’, accept you as you are, not too organized, living in your dreamy place.
I’ve watched you grow from the most beautiful little girl into an equally beautiful young woman. Beauty on the outside yes but you also have the most beautiful heart.
You were also the first child to compliment others. To praise and congratulate, motivate & inspire. You genuinely wish the best for everyone and see the beauty in all.
I’ve tried to protect you from the harsh realities of the world. Toughen you up and make you see the world is sadly not all unicorns and pixie dust. But, I was wrong and I am sorry. The world needs more people like you to spread joy, love, beauty and compassion. A life without dreams is not a life, just an existence. Shine your beautiful light wherever you go, turn it up bright. I’m so proud of the shining young woman you’ve become.
You are my friend, my confidante and my beautiful daughter. I love you and I am proud of you. Whatever you do, the life you choose to live will be award winning, Oscar worthy & full of the stuff dreams are made of.
What can I say about you. You blow all of our minds. You are a gift to us and to the world at large. You never fail to amuse, educate and entertain, always radiating your wonderful warmth and love.
When you came into the world you were a glorious and wanted surprise. I knew you would be my last child and I cherished every moment of my pregnancy with you and thoroughly enjoyed those early days when it was just you and me getting to know each other, curled up in a bundle of sweet, sweet love.
I feel like you were born with a great empathy, you can read peoples emotions so well. Watching and sacrificing your own wants for the benefit of others. We are always telling you not to be a martyr! But you do it most of the time with the best intentions.
You tell us all ‘I love you’ 10 times a day. Don’t ever stop that. It’s one of my favorite things about you, I like to hope that our love for you has helped you be so open with your affections.
I look at you growing now and I am so afraid, I don’t want to lose my lovely little boy to the big wide world. Slowly, surely, inevitably you are all leaving me, as you should and making your own way in the world.
You hate change, always have dirty glasses, like fine, expensive dining far too much! You are wise and hungry for knowledge but not arrogant or complacent. What will you be in this big wide world I wonder? You have so much to choose from and so much ambition I look forward to finding out but don’t leave me too soon.
Right now your fabulous presence is being felt on stage, you love the classics, have no fear and are so very entertaining. Everybody says how you shine on stage, just like your sister. Who knew I would have two showbiz stars in my brood.
Never stop hugging me goodnight, telling me you love me, reaching for my hand and giving it a reassuring squeeze every now and then, I love all of those things. When someday you cast those endearments onto someone else, when you fall in love as I suspect you will and it will last forever I will remember them fondly and hold them so close to my heart.
James, Alex & Stuart
You are my whole life and my reason for living. I’m glad you can forgive me all of my failings and I will never remember yours. Thank you for teaching me what love means, the unconditional & ever lasting kind. When I see your faces, I smile, sometimes cry and always feel loving emotion, even when angry at you! Know that you are all equally and unequivocally loved & adored by me and I would do anything for you…except pick up the crap on your bedroom floor. (Although secretly I still do). When you leave to live your beautiful lives come back to me often, call, text..think of me, because I am always thinking of you.
You loving, flawed, often embarrassing but the only one you have.