The beach happened.

I promise you that my city-living kid is the most adorable thing you have EVER SEEN when faced with sea and sand and rocks and crabs. I forgot.

I also forgot that a day on an English beach requires no stripping or lotioning. No lying down or sweltering. No need for shade or sunhats or the covering of wobbly thighs.

It was BLISS.

Also I didn’t have to take any medication today. Which means I must be on the up. Which means I can now sit gulping wine in the garden for the first time in a WHOLE WEEK.

A week clean, I ought to be feeling all Gwynethy, instead of all permanently hungovery. The mornings are conclusively more doable clean, but the evenings…I keep spending unnecessary time with the sprogs in the absence of any other entertainment. Am in danger of self-consciously “making memories” with them…YAK.

Our road-trip companions today were a fine hilarious woman and her daft youngest sprog. Her other sprog is what we in the special needs biz like to call ‘very special’. He is also brill, but today was a day for her and youngest to be without those extra needs for a bit and just dick around on a beach.   

I cannot believe what she had to arrange for this day to happen. Special schools stop for the summer just like regular ones, but for many of those kids, the change in routine is an absolute fuckarama. Which means it’s a MAMMOTH fuckarama for the parents.

Now then. I’ve never liked that ol’ mantra of “there’s always someone worse off than you”, largely because it just plain doesn’t work when you’re desperately trying to eat your own shitburger and finding that hard enough. Also, it doesn’t make sense in reverse: if you’re having an awesome day, are you meant to stop for a moment and think of all the people who are having a more awesome day than you?

But this family make me stop. If the parents get an invite to go out for the night they ALWAYS go (mainly coz they’re both also slightly alcoholic which is exactly as it should be, considering their shitburger) even though they know their eldest will likely wake up ready for the day at 2.30am. I have been there with them when the pissed turns to hungover at around 5am and you know you’ve got another 15 hours to get through…

Love is not remotely relevant when faced with a child whose needs are so severe. Time is. Time away because the reality is that for that child, being in a car for an hour and then on a beach for a day is unthinkable. Time away to be a different kind of parent, one who can watch from afar while drinking tea and plotting which single friends to match up. Time to get stuck in a traffic jam and be relaxed because all it means more time together being stoooooopid. Time to see again that your other child is happy and free and completely the most adorable thing on the beach (except for my child who was, as we’ve already established, THE ACTUAL MOST ADORABLE THING ON THE BEACH).

Can’t change my friend’s situation.

Can make time with her. 

Cheers to that friends…xx