Sunday, March 27, 2022


Have you also spent this last month looking at your kids, your pets, your home, your things and thinking what the actual fuck would I do with all of these if we had to flee?

Then doom-scrolling some more about the devastation in the Ukraine, making a comment about Zelenskyy being the hottest short guy in the world right now and going back to living your hyper-blessed life in your own deeply problematic and damaged country on this here burning planet?

What a time to be alive.

Because we are. We are alive and the wheel turns in the same ways it always has - the tide ebbs and flows.

Stella turned 12!

She planned her celebration down to the last detail, the group and the activities and the timings. We went to an indoor trampoline park - and took this 'album cover' photo on the way out - and then home to ours for pizza and movies and cake and a sleepover. 
I realised halfway through the evening that she wasn't doing great but she fiercely batted away all my queries, only the next day having a big sob about how she'd missed us at her party (us who were there throughout but just in the background making pizza and beds in the lounge) and wished it had just been the family at home and felt sad about one day living without us.
12 is hard y'all, that bridge between childhood and teen-dom is shaky and unknown and excitement for the future still so tightly bound to nostalgia for something which is not yet even really in the past. This photo was more prophetic than we'd realised.

Frieda - further along that bridge - went to her first big proper outdoor party recently, with DJ's and multiple dance-floors and cashless food trucks and (temporary) tattoo vendors. 
It was 13 - 18 year olds only, obviously no booze etc and heavily monitored (these parties are big business these days), but her first time alone in a big crowd with just her mates, her wits and (hopefully) her mother's voice in her ears ... 'trust your gut', 'stick with your friends', 'call me if you need to' and 'most importantly have fun'.
We were being very cool about it all, but as I drove away from dropping her off at a friend's to get ready I was surprised at how emotional I felt, and later - much later - when I'd fetched them from the party at midnight - hoarse, filthy and shiningly happy - and we were back home for tea and toast before bed she confessed to also feeling a small wobble as I'd driven away that afternoon.

The umbilical cord stretches, stretches very very far, but never breaks.

We rode off on our motorbikes last weekend for a grown ups trip up the coast.
As we packed the girls off to friends and grandparents for the weekend they both, separately, sincerely, and with no prompting, told us to have a really good time, to have fun, to enjoy the ride and the time away.
Is there any greater confirmation of parenting goals than your kids being lovely people - to you, their friends or themselves? I don't think so.

We spent the weekend at the edge of the ocean - reveling in the quiet and unstructured quality of time spent without any dependents, wondering at the luck of living in a place where even average middle-class folk such as ourselves can access places of such exclusive beauty, knowing that for the accident of birth us, and our children, could be leading totally different lives.

Watching the full moon Solstice tide ebb and flow, ebb and flow.. feeling tiny amongst the enormity of it all.