No matter how much I love my son (and I do, so all-consumingly that the thought of it makes me both laugh at the ridiculousness of the depths of my passion and cry with the overwhelming intensity of it all), I do sometimes want to get away from him.
To escape from being Mummy for a few days. To have time that is truly to myself, where I am free to go to the toilet without a small person bursting in to show me his Ben 10 magazine; free to sit and read a book without having the constant buzz of "Mu-mmy" in my ear.
So every now and then, I go off for a few days on my own. Doing so gives me an amazing feeling of freedom and clarity. It's not the same as the freedom I felt before becoming a mother – the protective urges and the sense of parental responsibility never leave me, but to have time alone, to walk for miles on a deserted beach, or sit on a bench people watching, to just spend a couple of days being me and not 'mummy' is amazingly restorative.
Of course I feel a pang of longing for my little boy when I phone him each evening, and the second I am back through my front door and tripping over action figures and skidding on trading cards it's as though I've never been away.
But whilst I am away, I can claim back a little bit of me that motherhood strips away.
Read more of The Semi Detached Parent columns here.