It’s been nice to be able to enjoy more of a feeling of normality again this month. We had Nanny come to stay for a weekend, and our first night out without the children in about two years. I’m back to having periods of flying solo while hubby is away (definitely didn’t miss that one!) and managed a night away with Sophie and Thomas to go and visit family during half-term.
After all the restrictions of the last fifteen months, normality feels like quite a treat. It comes with a new appreciation of being able to enjoy these kinds of moments again. It’s not the normal we had pre-Covid, though. Even if every single restriction was removed tomorrow, we wouldn’t be able to go back to that normal. The experiences of living through a pandemic have changed us and made us re-evaluate the things that really matter.
Normal is a funny thing. Something that differs from person to person, from family to family. Our family photo this month reflects what is now our ‘normal’. No matter how much I wish that our normal could be different, this is how it is. I’m grateful that Thomas recognises Jessica, that he knows who she is but it makes me so sad that he’ll never know her. He’ll never have memories of fun moments with two big sisters and Sophie’s memories of fun with her siblings will forever fall into two camps – life with Jessica and life with Thomas. But it is what it is and it’s a normal that we’ve mostly learned to accept although we often rebel against having to accept it.
I’m grateful we’re able to enjoy time with extended family again though and start to have days out and trips away. I’m grateful that we had Jessica with us for six and a half beautiful years and while family life will never be what I wish it could be, I’m grateful for my family and the moments we share. This is our normal. This is us in June 2021, on the cusp of another shift in what normal everyday lives. Our little family, moving forward as best we can together and carrying Jessica with us wherever we go.