I got a good bit of positive feedback from readers when I wrote openly about my Mum a week or so ago https://lornpearsontrains.co.uk/2015/03/04/letting-go-you-can-do-it/, and I’ve wanted to write about who I consider my ‘real mum’ for quite some time now.
When times were tough at home, from the age of about 9.
I used to go 2 doors along the street and visit our neighbours Liz and Sandy.
Some friendly neighbours who seemed to take me in (when I asked) and helped me to grow up.
I spent most of my spare time around at their house.
At the start, it was for comfort out of our noisy and disrupted house.
And as time went on I spent so much time there, I kind of became a part of their family.
I was able to get away from the silences and the arguments at home, into a much nicer environment. And I could talk through my thoughts and upset with Liz.
She was able to teach me like a teacher, and love me like a daughter too.
My Mum didn’t like it, and tried to turn me against Liz.
But it didn’t work, it just turned me more against my mum.
Liz and Sandy even tried to help her, but she was so stuck in her own little bubble, nothing seemed to help her.
Then when Jemma was 3 (and just after the birth of their second daughter Lisa,
Liz and Sandy announced they were moving away to inverness – my world shattered.
Not so far away, but my world seemed to shatter – on the end of a phone or a 2 hour journey away.
I remember after we found out, Jemma came around to our house with a card she’d written (aged 3) saying she’d miss me. And I got a ‘hear no evil’ bear from Liz, which was very apt. What I didn’t realise then was that them moving away would help me even more.
Every school holidays from then on, (and even the odd Christmas) I had the opportunity to go and stay with them. I can’t remember if they offered or I asked (probably the latter), But they took me in as their own.
I remember calling Liz from home and must have taken up do much time chatting. Then spending weeks with them in holiday times.
She was bit like a counsellor or a teacher, but in actual fact she was more like a Mum, a real mum.
Always there for me, looking out for me.
Helping me do my best.
Helping me see things for what they were.
And every now and again, I still like to visit her,
or send her flowers, just remind her how special she is to me and how much she helped shaped my life.
This week, a colleague at work asked me what I was getting my mum for Mother’s Day, And I realised she doesn’t know the story,
I’m not getting my Mum anything, but I’m got Liz some flowers (and early too).
I’m lucky Liz and Sandy were there, to help me and guide me (along with my Dad and a few others).
I look back and wonder how they could have let me in, I can’t imagine having a 9-18 year old coming around nearly every day. But they did, they just looked out for me and had me around.
I’m so grateful to them, and feel lucky to have had them, and have them in my life. I still love visiting them and being a part of their family.
And I really love it when she serves up her home made macaroni or fish pie – there’s nothing quite like it on this earth. 🙂