I am on a train, speeding away from L and everyone else. Not by choice, but because every year at this time, I work away from home for nearly a whole week. I hate this – I thought when my kids got older, it would be easier, but its not. K hugs me for the longest time, having asked me repeatedly what it is we need to DO that means I am away for this long. I don’t really have an answer.
She is anxious about L and how she will restrict when I a away, telling me that Dad and C don’t make her eat like I do. But I have briefed them, leaving notes and meal lists and told them, in front of L, that they must insist on every mouthful being eaten, that meals must be substantial, not ‘diet’ meals. I am not sure how confident I am, a text from her father informs me she is eating chicken salad for lunch. I sigh to myself on a packed train and text back that she really needs more.
I have also made a pact with L – that I will I give up alcohol and will not drink so much as a glass of wine at this conference. She isn’t troubled by my wine consumption; this was my idea, to put me in touch with her thoughts. Pouring a glass of wine, laughing with colleagues over a glass is what I do. I will have to think differently and model new behaviours – just as L is the girl who didn’t eat and now has to eat, I am the woman who enjoys a glass or two, or four, of wine and now I will be the woman who asks for orange juice. At this distance, it is all I can do to help and it will have to be enough