Several times this summer we have tried to see friends and be sociable. Not just for the children - for me too, this parenting lark can (as a close friend astutely pointed out last week) be a lonely business. Particularly when you have a child with additional needs. Or two. Or three. But after today I think I will be focussing on the positives and staying home.
It's not that I'm "fed up" with all the issues, (well, I am a bit!!) or that I'm having a self-pitying moment, it goes deeper to be honest. It's hard to describe... which is precisely the problem. HOW do you describe to others the difficulties daily life presents, how normal activities are nigh on impossible some days - so challenging you just want to curl up and not try? That might sound defeatist, but it's this growing chasm of experience which is having such a profound impact, in many ways I feel so far distanced from the majority of parents on a daily basis.
A lovely picnic with school friends of K and A before term starts. To start with it seemed straightforward.
- It was a weekend, so H (who is currently in non-stop meltdown as the new term approaches) could be left with Richard at home.
- Since it was a picnic the twins should not feel "different" with their food as everyone would be taking their own sandwiches, right?
But kids inevitably share so we had to read sweet labels and draw at least some attention to ourselves. (quietly!) Then the new Mum in the class wanted to know why my two couldn't eat certain things... and didn't understand why intolerances didn't mean small amounts were OK and how their "gut allergies" differ from immediate ones. I mean, why would she? It's not like I'm an expert on anything my kids don't have, if it's outside your world experience you can be forgiven for not knowing.
But that just makes the gap wider. And deeper.