There is that 5%, where I am so exhausted I can't think straight, that I have not been proud of. In fact? I'm downright embarrassed with myself. So I thought I would come clean. Offer other Mothers in similar shameful circumstances someone they can relate to. Reveal all My Dirty 'Mummy' Secrets.
Antidepressants are too often handed out as a cure all. Yet writing a prescription is not enough. It is like sticking a plaster on a gunshot wound. Special needs parents want to be able to manage, they want to be able to cope, and more importantly they want to be empowered to do this.
Everyone was born a baby - we are all here for a short time and no matter how wonderful someone might appear, or how much they seem to have, we all come into the world and leave it the same way. With nothing but our body and our character.
If the idea of giving a speech or making a presentation leaves you quaking, take consolation from the fact that even the world's most charismatic professional speakers fight through a degree of nervousness.
Deep down, we know that we should be safe in the sun. I certainly knew it, but my husband Graham thought he was 'indestructible' and so he didn't wear sun cream. It's only now, as a widow after Graham was cruelly snatched away by skin cancer when he was just 43 years old, that I can't believe I didn't act differently and make him protect himself.
Where are Charlie and Lola's mum and dad? They go to the zoo, the park, play in the paddling pool - ALL ON THEIR OWN. There is never a grown up around. Not a sniff of adult supervision. Are social services aware?
You are safe at school now. I like walking you there because I get to hear more about what you are thinking and there is space for me to listen. And I understand more about how you see the world at ten, nine and six. 'Why the hell would you buy a car the same colour as your kid's hair?' It is not exactly insightful stuff. But if these are your biggest worries, I am serving you well. I won't always be here to do that. We know Mum's doctor says her epilepsy will get her one day. Fruit loops say Karma will. But either way, I wanted to write down a few things for you to remember as you get bigger.
Responding to a failing economy, rising parental stress about our children's economic futures and policymakers' obsession with the link between education and social mobility, reforms to our education system have reinforced a traditionalist approach to learning, and childhood.
My journey to liking myself and being happy inside my own skin started after hitting rock bottom and realising that I was a weekend-bender away from losing absolutely everything that mattered to me.
Behaving with integrity often means having to walk away from opportunities and face loss, but a prize that is won dishonourably is not worth keeping. Like taking illegal steroids to win a race. Is it ever worth it?
I want to be there to pick my kids up from school every day, or be there when my kids walk in the door. I want to spend the holidays drawing, painting and creating all manner of weird and wonderful craft projects with them, or wandering through the fields and avenues of our surrounding town as we go on adventures in the great outdoors.
Looking back, there is so much I would do differently, so much I wish I'd known. Because there are things they don't tell you about in the antenatal classes, and things that nobody likes to talk about.
Illness is up there at the top of parental fears: Illness in our children or illness that strips us of our ability to parent them, or worse. Thankfully I'm on the up. And thankfully this period of convalescence has offered me a great dose of relief from yet another parental worry - are we doing a good enough job the rest of the time?
Half the fishermen and artisans on the beach where we live were expecting them even before they arrived. R had asked about dhow rides and a fishing trip for my dad and on our weekend strolls, they would wave us over.
You do follow a fashion of sorts, but not one that will be seen on catwalks in Milan. More in the coffee shops of a local highstreet or on a Saturday afternoon in a busy (and stinking) soft play. Think more hobo sh*t rather than boho chic.
I don't have time to exercise. I've got fat. I'm constantly wired from mainlining diet coke instead of lunch. My phone beeps constantly from the SIX Twitter accounts, four Facebook accounts, instagram and pinterest accounts that I manage from the iphone I'm enslaved to.