I’ve been writing dates into my new diary (yes, I do still use paper – how can you faintly pencil things in on digital media?). I marked in meetings, courses, weekends with friends, then I looked up school holidays.
The twins’ Spring term starts on 7th January, and so on with February Half Term, Easter and Whitsun. Then school breaks up on 19th July. Irritatingly, I couldn’t find a date for returning to school in the Autumn. I assumed it would be 1st September, so started to mark that in. Then suddenly I stopped with my pencil in mid-air. It didn’t matter that I did not know the correct date: after this June, Perran and Carenza would never be returning to school again.
I felt my stomach twist. I flicked through my diary – only one more music concert, two more school trips, one more one more dance display. A whole way of life is grinding to a halt for me. Sometimes women who have been deprived of their own baby snatch another from a pram. Will anybody notice if I steal a teenager so I can go on being proud at school concerts?