One more Angel in Heaven

It was a sad day at school yesterday as one of the pupils died suddenly over the half term holiday. I do not know the details but he was only a 12 year old boy and I can only imagine how devastated his family must be feeling right now. The Headteacher and staff will have had to try to explain to his class why he was missing and that he would not be returning and given the range of cognitive ability at school, it will have been a painful message to deliver and not easy to try to ensure that everyone understood. Knowing the school as I do, the children’s welfare comes first and they will do all that they can to comfort his peers and support his family. But it is always shocking when a child dies, someone who has not yet had long enough to grow and live his life to the full. Of course it reminds us also of the fragility of life and makes us want to hold our own children close and protect them as much as we can.

Joshua does not understand the concept of death, as he deals in the here and now and what is in front of him. Joshua adored his Granny who died over 5 months ago , but now that she is not in his life anymore, he has adjusted really well. I have no doubt that if she were to appear again Рand I so wish that she could! Рthat he would greet her with a huge smile and one of his bear hugs; she will not be forgotten, but it is out of sight, out of mind for Joshua. I was away working yesterday and he will not see me again until after school tonight, but he had Yorkshire Grandma and his Dad to take care of him, so he will not have missed me at all. I am confident that he will not have given me a thought, until I turn up tonight when I will probably be treated to a hug and a kick as his greeting. I am pretty certain that Joshua does not have the capacity to speculate where his Granny  has gone or where I might have been yesterday, it is a simpler response to adapt and carry on regardless, so long as his basic needs are still being met. That outlook will be why he has settled in so well at respite, as he simply transfers his affections to the staff who are looking after him and does not pine for home or his family.

In the coming days, our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the young boy and I hope that they can find some peace, somehow.

Life and Death

There are all kinds of bereavement therapies available , but I have never heard of Baking Therapy. As a way to relax and distract my mind from over-thinking, I find baking to be very helpful. I create something that is, hopefully, delicious out of raw ingredients and I have to focus fully on the recipes, so it is fully absorbing. Yesterday, I was given some cheese at work as it was leftover from a project. I left work early , potentially for a nap, but instead first of all I made some cheese straws then drove them back to my colleagues in the office, while they were still warm. That was almost as relaxing, and more rewarding, than my planned siesta, as it made my colleagues happy.

It will be my Parent Coffee Morning this morning at school, so I was busy last night preparing brownies and cake for them to enjoy. I have not seen the school Mums for ages, as we did not have a coffee morning in May, as half term got in the way, so it will be good to see them again as April seems forever ago . The last fortnight seems to have been a full lifetime, I just had to double check my calendar then, as I did not believe that Mum could have died just 2 weeks ago today. I am hoping for some hugs and support at the coffee morning, but mainly some distractions, to be able to think about other people and their issues for a change, so that funeral matters can fade into the background for once. It was important for me that I did not cancel the planned event, or delegate it to someone else, as this is something that I enjoy and carrying on indicates that I am still able to function, even though I will not be, nor do I have to be, the life and soul of the morning.

Today, parents who’s children will be joining our school in September have been invited to school for a look around, to meet their teachers and to meet some other parents too. They are having their own event this morning, but I am hoping to meet them too , so that we can make them feel welcome and recruit them to our coffee mornings in the Autumn term. They will be feeling all kinds of emotions today I would have thought, ranging from excitement and relief to get their child at a specialist school, to anxiety and fear about their vulnerable child coming to a new environment. These families are at the start of their journey with our school, whereas we are on the countdown from September, it will be Joshua’s final Autumn term and the start of another emotional roller coaster.

But I am putting that aside for now, my brain and nerves can only handle one change at a time. At the moment I am living just one day at a time, so today is all about the Parent Coffee Morning and about surviving the two week anniversary of Mum’s death.