Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Living with it

So Emmy is doing fantastically well a year into moving to her residential school.

We don't live in fear every day and I don't make regular trips to A&E anymore.

Most importantly our girl is thriving. She's incredibly busy. Too busy for a visit last night as she was off to her favourite place. A disco run especially for learning disabled young adults and as she has something of a foot for dancing she stayed on the dance-floor from beginning to end.

Her sixteenth birthday party had guests, which was different to last year which featured Emily alone on a bouncy castle. probably one of the saddest things I've ever seen and as a parent of two disabled children, that's saying something. There were no guests because no one wanted to come. Friends slip away when your life diversifies.

She had an activity holiday and goes horse riding and began a performing Arts course in September. She won an achievement award and she has real friends.

She's happy busy and doing well, but after a move into a unit for more able young people, she saw that one of the residents goes home every weekend and this is where we have hit a problem.

Emily wants to come home to stay and she can't. She can't for two reasons. One - the violence is too extreme and too unpredictable and two -She won't want to go back and this is too cruel to expect her to endure.

Sending Emmy away at 15 was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do and I've had to do a lot of difficult things as a carer for 20 years.

She visits a lot and we visit her and it's always a delight but an overnight is too risky at the moment for her and for us.

So tonight again, I'm sad. The sort of sad that gnaws at your bones and rips at your soul as I struggle between the intellectual decision and the desperate need to dry her tears and just bring her home.

I started this blog as a cathartic space and it's proved it's use once again.


I sent my blog out earlier and the beauty of Twitter proved itself again with words of comfort. To Jonathan and Rick by DM to Kaliya and LadyLoki, Ryan, Emma  Bernadette, Kristina, and Polly, by tweet thank you all so much.

Rosemary emailed and with her permission I'm adding her words to this blog because she summed up so well, so many things, with kindness and a beautiful flair with words which is so apparent; but which she she doesn't know she has:

Hi Nicky,

I know how difficult it is to let go, even when it is best for all concerned. Unless been through it no one else will understand the heartache. They don't understand how the violence can be as quick as the flick of a switch, plus the fallout from it that can go on for hours, sometimes days.

I hope as Emmy becomes settled, you can smile more and more. Again looking to the future, not many will understand our worries.

I don't have your flair with words but if you ever want to offload I have broad shoulders and a good set of ears.


x x


  1. Oh Nic, I wish I could take the pain away. The knowledge that you're doing your best for Emmy isn't going to be enough to ease things. Sending love to you and here to listen when it helps x

  2. So sorry. Things just don't resolve, even when you're doing the best you can.

    This afternoon we were getting my 18yo daughter's new room ready, before the start of her transition to supported living. Don't know how this is going to go, but we will miss her - but she just can't be at home any more, it has got impossible. I hope it will work out, but it is so sad even to think of her not being here.