Tag Archives: interview

Meet The Blogger: Adoption: The Bear Facts

A very warm welcome to Blogfox14, blogger at Adoption: The Bear Facts who is featured as today’s Meet The Blogger.

Book: Trying to read my way through everything by JoJo Moyes
Music: Capital or Kiss radio for dancing around the kitchen; lots of tuneless singing of Uptown Funk with Big Bear
TV Prog: Ugly House to Lovely House to get ideas for our upcoming renovations (that’s the official line, really just to spend some quality time with gorgeous George Clarke!)
Food: Thai always
Pastime: Blogging is rapidly taking over but building my Lego Mini or hunting for vintage coffee pots when I have time

My biggest challenge as an adoptive parent:
Probably balancing the very different needs of my two boys. When there is an incident, who do you go to first? Victim or perpetrator? How do you separate them whilst leaving neither alone? Making sure they feel equally loved and they both have quality time.

When I look into the eyes of my child I see:
Little Bear reminds me of an Armadillo – hard on the outside, soft on the inside. Sometimes, when he allows his gaze to meet mine, I can see straight into his soft, vulnerable centre.

At the weekend I can mostly be found:
In my wellies, trudging after a muddy scooter and balance bike to find really muddy mud. Also, at the zoo or snuggled up on the sofa watching a film.

What makes me/ my family laugh:
Both bears make me laugh a lot. I love it when Big Bear starts a sentence with “Dad, imagine there was a ferret and it…..” or Little Bear decides to wear the play tunnel and waddles around looking like ET.

What I hope I can give to my children:
A strong sense of self so that they can be who they truly are, without necessarily following the path everyone else takes. I also hope I can give them a good set of communication and social skills as they will carry you through most situations in life.

Why did I start blogging about adoption?:
I replied to an email from our Agency offering Social Media training for potential online adoption champions. There were very limited places and when I didn’t get one, realised I really wanted to blog anyway.

As a teenager I was a big diary writer and more recently have dabbled in children’s fiction. I’m just a frustrated author writing about what I know.

An interview with an adopted child

Today we are bringing you an anonymous post from an adoptive mum who interviewed her son.
He’s 9 and has been home for 8 years, developmentally he’s doing mostly fine, although lacks some emotional understanding.
The mum involved wants to stress that this was conducted with express permission from her son, who understands that his answers are going to be published online – he wants to get his views across…

Do you know what adoption means?

Yes I do.

Why do people have to be adopted?

Because their mum and dad can’t look after them properly, even though they might want them to stay.

Do you feel different to your friends?

Yeah, because I’m adopted and they’re not. But I like football and they like football so in some ways we’re not different….I don’t know why I feel like I am. I just am.

Is it a good thing or a bad thing to be adopted?

Not sure…well it’s a bad thing of course.

Do you ever think about your birth mum?

Sometimes…not sure what though. I want to see my birth dad sometimes too.

Would you like to meet your brothers and sisters?

Yes.

What would you say to them?

I don’t know. We’d probably argue like I do with <my adoptive sister>.

Do you think it’s good that people want to adopt…

Yes, so like the child/ren won’t be treated bad, because the first parents might treat the child bad. They might tell lies to them which is bad, or they might smoke, or do the wrong stuff like feeding the wrong milk, or maybe worse.

Do you think it’s good that you were adopted then?

Yes, kind of…it makes me feel sad, but I don’t know why. But it is a good thing.

Would you like to meet some other children who are adopted?

Yeah, it would be cool.

What would you talk about?

I dunno, like other boy stuff –football probably. Maybe the other things they’re into.

If I had a choice, I wouldn’t want to be adopted – my birth parents might be nice, but they didn’t treat me right and I might have died as a baby.

Do you think children should get to choose their adoptive parents?

Yeah older kids should be able to.

Do you think you should have got to choose?

Yeah, but I was only like a year old, a baby, so I couldn’t have made a choice, and anyway, there was only you to choose from wasn’t there??!!

Is there anything you want to say to people who are thinking about adoption?

Yes, be careful because the child you want to adopt might be ill. Or they might have things wrong in their brain – like me. Like it didn’t all grow properly. Be careful and learn about brain stuff, and having fun because love and cuddles and having fun can help fix a kids brain, even when it’s really broken like I think mine is. Hang on…if my brain hasn’t grown properly is there a hole in it where my memories might fall out? Is that why I forget stuff at school?

Thank you to our interviewer and interviewee, it’s very insightful to see how a young man thinks and feel about adoption. We know that the conversation continued with questions that are more personal and pertinent to the individual, and mum felt like she’d had a real breakthrough and a proper connection moment. This is the first time she’s ever talked with her son in such a structured manner.
Have you ever had a conversation like this with your children? It’s quite frank, is that an approach you would use?

Meet Me: Plainlyamess

Today’s Meet Me post is from adoptive mum and tweeter @plainlyamess, read on to find out more…
  • Book – Three More Words
  • Music -Sing-A-Longs & Lullabies for the Film Curious George
  • TV programme – The Middle
  • Food – Guacamole
  • Pastime – Writing

What is your biggest challenge as an adoptive parent?
Maintaining my individuality. Most days, I have little energy to move beyond meeting the most urgent needs of our family.

What do you wish you had known before you adopted your children?  
Attachment isn’t something I can control at all and it doesn’t develop by simply rocking my child and spoon feeding him. He may want those things, and yet he will also have unique and complicated needs due to his individuality and complicated history. My job is to get to know him where he is and nurture him in doses that don’t freak him out. Giving him space is sometimes the best way to show him I care.

Who inspires you?
Adult adopted people and those who grew up in the foster care system who are willing to share their stories

Tea/Gin?
Strong tea with two sugars and whole milk

What do you do to take care of yourself?
Write

What is the best or most memorable piece of advice you have ever received?  
Your children are telling you what they need through their behaviour. As they begin to feel safe, they begin to communicate that safety through their behaviour too. It’s the parent’s job to help their children feel safe.

My perfect adoption support would include…
An adult adopted person investing in my child, consistently

When I look into the eyes of my child I see…
an intense and strong individual I am still getting to know

What I hope I can give to my child/Children?
Empathy

At the weekend I can mostly be found…
in my pajamas

#MeetMe – Kim

Today’s second #MeetMe post is from another reader – Kim:

  • Book – The Explosive Child
  • Music – Sanskrit chants by Kino MacGregor
  • TV programme – Bake Off!!!
  • Food –  Lots of recipes from A Girl Called Jack
  • Pastime – Yoga
    What is your biggest challenge as an adoptive parent?
    Helping school understand and see him for the beautiful boy he is.
    Tea/Gin?
    Tea, been tee total for 2 months, it’s the only way for me to cope with disturbed nights and emotional exhaustion.
    What do you think is your biggest source of support?
    Yoga
    What do you do to take care of yourself?
    Yoga
    When I look into the eyes of my child I see…
    So much love.
    The best thing we did this week…
    Was get to school, every day!
    If you could take your children anywhere in the world to see something where would you go?
    Dharmsala, to meet the exiled Tibetan community there and climb the mountains.
    What I hope I can give to my child/Children?
    Roots
    At the weekend I can mostly be found…
    At our allotment.
    What makes you and/or your family laugh?
    Massive burps or any size of flatulence.

#MeetMe – Jenny

Today’s first #MeetMe post is from adoptive mum, Jenny…

Quick 5 – In my life at the moment….

  • Book –   Saving Danny (Cathy Glass)
  • Music–  Take That
  • TV programme  – Orange is the new black
  • Food – pasta
  • Pastime – Making cake pops

What is your biggest challenge as an adoptive parent?
Trying to meet the needs of all three children at the same time

What do you wish you had known before you adopted your children? 
I wish I had known a lot more about attachment and early trauma. There are so many things I could have put in place during those early weeks/months had I of known more.

Who inspires you?
My children. They have been through more in their short lives than many people do in a lifetime. They inspire me to carry on fighting for support for them, to educate others about adoption, and also to push for changes to the system.

Tea/Gin?
Can I choose wine instead?

What do you think is your biggest source of support?
My parents have been simply amazing in terms of supporting me, but I would not have survived this journey without the support of other adopters. They are the only ones who truly ‘get it’.

What I hope I can give to my child/Children?
Happiness, security and feelings of trust.

At the weekend I can mostly be found…
Curled up on the sofa trying to recover from the previous week!

Meet The Blogger – The Giggles Family

It’s been a while I know, but we’re bringing back a special Meet The Blogger to introduce to you…Theunnamed Giggles Family…

Quick 5 – In my life at the moment….

Book – How do people have time to read books?

Music – We are pretty eclectic. Anything from Enya to Kanye West. If it evokes an emotions or makes us move our feet we like it.

TV programme – 24 Hours in A&E (with a tissue), Orange is the new black and I’m not going to lie, I do like a bit of Made In Chelsea!

Food – Weekdays we try to “clean eat”. Weekends anything goes!

Pastime– Making and editing videos 😉

What is your biggest challenge as an adoptive parent?
Trying to see into the future! With every decision we make, we are trying to second guess how our son will view it, which is basically impossible. We are just trying to do our best for him, to help him feel confident with his start in life and what that means for him.

What do you wish you had known before you adopted your children?
That you don’t have to feel bad if you don’t feel like “mum” at the start. It can take months for the relationship to grow, years even for some. It’s the same for a lot of biological parents too!

Why did you start blogging about adoption?
We made a blog and YouTube channel to keep a record of our family for my husband, family and friends. As he is in the army we had to move away from family and friends and this year he has to stay on a different base to us most of the week. Its only recently that we mentioned adoption in the videos. It was after a lot of thought and worry. We have had a really positive reaction. Its something we talk about openly (the process, the fact, but not our sons personal story) and confidently as just another way of making a family.

Where do you get your blogging inspiration from?
Firstly from thinking about what I want recorded for my husband and son. Secondly, The every day things that happen in family life. I figured if something matters or has happened to me, chances are it has happened to someone else too. It’s a great way to support each other. Recently I have wanted to write about how we are starting to think about how we welcome another child into the family. Whether to go with fertility treatments or adoption a second time and how many issues that brings up.

Who is your favourite adoption blogger?
Sally Donovan, No Bohns About It.

Who is your favourite non-adoption blogger?
The Honest Mum, A Mummy Too.

What made you choose the blogging platform i.e blogger/wordpress that you did?
I’ve used WordPress before but kept finding glitches so decided to try Blogger. I find it easier to use, and easy to integrate with other google tools and our YouTube channel.

Tea/Gin?
I’m rubbish at drinking. Seriously one glass and I’m under the table so tea and biscuit for me please.

What do you think is your biggest source of support?
Family.

Reward charts yes/no?
J isn’t old enough to use these with anyway, so I have to admit I haven’t researched into this kind of thing enough yet to have an educated opinion

What is the best or most memorable piece of advice you have ever received?
To “Fake it until you make it”. However I would say, still have some people in your life you feel you can tell even your deepest darkest thoughts to. Its best to get them our of your system.

Also to trust in your instincts. You are with your child most.

My perfect adoption support would include…
A life story book and later life letter that were actually ready before court concluded and that we had input in! Local play groups etc with other adoptive families. Funding for therapeutic support.

When I look into the eyes of my child I see.. Determination

The best thing we did this week was….Spend time together as a family

If you could take your children anywhere in the world to see something where would you go?
When he is older, snorkelling on a coral reef. He is amazed by water and fish!

What I hope I can give to my child/Children?
Confidence in who he is, to be an individual and curiosity at the world.

Find us at:

Blog: www.thegigglesfamily.com

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/GigglesFamily

If you’re a blogger who hasn’t ever been interviewed for Meet The Blogger and would like to be, then please email us at theadoptionsocial@gmail.com

Interview with an adopted child questions

We’ve published a couple of interviews with adopted children recently. These have proved popular, and we received a request for a list of questions that could be used for those who would like to ‘interview’ their own children.

We must stress that if used in the format below, this is not necessarily a therapeutic way of talking to your children, however you could turn it into something more fun than just sitting down and directly talking to your child. Perhaps dress up as newsreaders? Turn it around and allow your child to ask you? Use a Dictaphone or your phone to record it? Be inventive and use fun ways to make it less formal. Or for some, maybe this frank discussion is more appropriate. You know your child, you do what’s best for you.

If you’d like to send it to us for publication after, then please do, but if we receive interviews for publication, we’ll assume that you have asked your child’s permission to do so. We will keep ALL interviews anonymous to protect those involved, but it would be helpful to know the age of the child.

We’d love to see a variety of techniques – soundcloud, youtube, written, or something different.

So here are the questions our mums used. We only published part of the written interview, and you can read it here, and you can see and hear Sarah and Stig’s interview here:

Do you know what adoption means?

Why do people have to be adopted?

Should birth parents be given help so they could keep their children?

Does adoption make you feel different?

Do your friends know you’re adopted? How does that make you feel?

Do you feel different to your friends?

How does adoption feel for you? Is it a good thing or bad thing?

Is it a good thing or a bad thing to be adopted?

What are the bad things about you being adopted?

What are the difficulties you have in school?

Do you understand in yourself why that is? Why you have those difficulties?

What is it about you that makes you feel or behave differently to other children?

Do you ever think about your birth mum?

Would you like to meet your brothers and sisters?

What would you say to them?

Do you think it’s good that people want to adopt…

Do you think it’s good that you were adopted then?

Would you like to meet some other children who are adopted?

What would you talk about?

Do you think about adoption often?

What makes you who you are?

Do you think children should get to choose their adoptive parents?

Do you think you should have got to choose?

Is there anything you want to say to people who are thinking about adoption?

Is there anything you’d like people to understand about adoption that they don’t really get?

Will you adopt a child when you’re older?

What do you think? Have you interviewed your child with different questions?

Meet The Blogger – Life With Katie

Gem from Life with Katie is a popular blogger writing about family life with Katie and now Pip too. Read more about her here….

Life With Katie

Quick 5 – In my life at the moment…

Book:
I’m reading two books at the moment.  For *cough* fun I’m reading Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy.  I’m not mad about the book though I must say but am going to finish it because it will be made into a film and I want to see how it ends.  I’m also reading “Raising Boys” by Steve Biddulph in the hope of gaining some insight into the brain of Pip.

Music:
Avicii which I’m absolutely loving!  Our other main favourite in the car is Taylor Swift’s “Red” album.  Katie and I love singing along.  Katie asked me to put the song on where they dress up like hamsters the other day.  She actually meant the track “22” where they dress up like hipsters!  I love lots of types of music from classical to rock.  I’m still a Radio 1 girl, mostly because they played The Smiths on Radio 2 recently and I cannot accept that The Smiths are now Radio 2 music!

TV programme:
Oh where do I start?  You would see that I clearly have no life if I listed all the programmes I record and wade through each week.  TCM and I both love Elementary” and “Grey’s Anatomy”. We scare ourselves silly each week watching “The Following”.  I love watching “Girls” which I find off beat and hilarious.

Food:
I’ve just polished off an emormous Toblerone. Does that qualify as food?  I am Coeliac so food plays a big part in my life, mostly having to avoid the things I used to love.  I like to bake tasty gluten-free cakes and biscuits and my brownies are legendary.  Our favourite meals are mussels and frites or fahitas and my favourite restaurant to visit is our local Thai restaurant. If there was one thing I could eat right at this minute, without fear of being ill, it would be a piece of warm French stick laden with butter.

Pastime:
I’ve always liked to dance and sing, performing in many shows as a youngster and becoming a Butlin’s Redcoat in my late teens and early 20s.  I am part of a Reiki healing group and have been doing Reiki for many years.  Since Pip joined us I’ve felt very tired in the evenings so am mostly just chilling and watching TV and going to my healing group.

What is your biggest challenge as an adoptive parent?
Knowing how much to talk about or downplay the fact that they are adopted.  I want them to know they can always talk to me about it without fear of upsetting me but I don’t want them to feel that it is everything about them, because it is just a part of their personal jigsaw puzzle.  It is a topic that will ebb and flow throughout the years I am sure and may differ for each child.  I think it will help them that they shared a Birth Mother and can support each other with that.  I also worry about getting the parenting bit right and how many of our parenting challenges are because they are adopted and how many are them just being children who are pushing boundaries and exploring their personalities.  I try not to see every parenting challenge as being adoption related which helps us stay grounded but can be a challenge in itself.

What do you wish you had known before you adopted your children?
I wish I had known how emotionally charged and complicated contact can be.  When going through the adoption process we were encouraged to think quite literally about contact and the fact that we might have to write letters.  The reality of writing letters that are unanswered or letters that are replied to sporadically is far more complicated as is the issue of telling the children about the letterbox contact.  We also have direct contact with Katie and Pip’s middle sibling, Kip which is a new contact and is quite involved plus we maintain contact with both sets of Foster Carers. It’s a lot of contact in one form or another and it can feel intense, for me that is.

Why did you start blogging about adoption?
I started blogging about adoption as a way of keeping friends and family up to date with our introductions with Katie.  I also have an extraordinarily disastrous memory so continued to keep a record of Katie and Pip’s lives.  I also wanted to share our adoption journey with other people to show that it is something that ordinary people can do. Our life as adopters, thus far, has been relatively straightforward but I seek to be honest about our entire journey to offer as full a picture of our experiences as possible.

Where do you get your blogging inspiration from?
From my children and our life mostly but I also have daily bulletins from Google with news articles about adoption and fostering and take inspiration from policies and events happening in the world of adoption.  I also read other blogs, when I have the time, and draw on, and relate to, the experiences of other adopters.

What made you choose the blogging platform i.e blogger/wordpress that you did?
Blogger was the first platform I found and I found it very straightforward to use.  Having said that I am now feeling constrained by its limitations and am seeking to self-host and redesign Life with Katie probably using a WordPress theme package.  This is very much a work in progress at the moment and I am trying to find the theme that best suits my needs.

Tea/Gin?
Can I say wine?  I am mostly a water drinker, with the odd cup of decaf tea or herbal tea thrown in, but generally around about 6pm I can feel the desire for a glass of Prosecco creeping up on me.  Am I a lush or just a stressed parent?

What do you think is your biggest source of support?
My husband, TCM, and also one of my best friends who is a childcare expert.  I am lucky to be able to gain lots of insight into child development from her and assess where my children are experiencing difficulties but it also helps me to see my children as regular children first and adopted children second.

Reward charts yes/no?
I’m still undecided on this one.  We don’t have issues around shame to manage so we use a pot of beads that Katie collects for good behaviour.  There is always a good reward sitting on the shelf for her when her pot is full to add incentive. I do think they only work as an incentive though when Katie wants them to work and I don’t use the beads all the time.  They come and go when a focus on a specific behavioural issue is required.  I spend my life looking for the ultimate parenting tool (rather like looking for the ultimate handbag and diary) but I suspect it does not exist (hence the need for wine and meditation!).

What is the best or most memorable piece of advice you have ever received?
“Pick your battles!”  I have heard this from many people and it is good advice.  Choose one or two things to focus on at any time and turn your back (sometimes literally) on the others.  I often walk away and seek to not feed energy into an issue that will esculate or have an undesirable outcome.  This is generally harder than it sounds though.

What I hope I can give to my child/Children?
I  hope I can give my children the skills and emotional support to live their lives to their fullest ability.  I hope I can help them become adults who feel confidence in who they are and what their abilities are.  I hope I can help them feel whole and grounded and accept their different start in life.  I hope I can support their journey towards understanding their life and themselves. I hope they grow up knowing they are loved without boundaries

What makes you and/or your family laugh?
The children.  The funny things they say and do.  Their quirky ways and mannerisms.  Katie makes some hilarious faces and is ridiculously cheeky.  For example.  When TCM was attempting to explain to her that Mummy was upset when she broke my vase from Greece because it meant a lot to me, she did a very loud fart and said “Well that meant a lot to me!”  What more can I say?

Meet The Blogger – Three Pink Diamonds

Today it’s the turn of Three Pink Diamonds, read on to learn more about the mum behind the blog…

Boots Picture

Quick 5 – In my life at the moment

Book – Creating Loving Attachments by Dan Hughes & Kim Golding and just about to start reading The New Contented Little Baby Book by Gina Ford.

Music – Pharrell Williams – Happy.

TV programme – New Housewives of New Jersey.

Food – Marvellous Creations Chocolate

Pastime – Baking

What do you wish you had known before you adopted your children?
I wish we were given a deeper insight into how difficult parenting can be and the personal challenges you face whilst caring for children that have already experienced so much. I think if we had been provided with more information then it would have helped me not to feel so desperate and alone in the really dark moments.

Where do you get your blogging inspiration from?
To begin with I wanted to share our story of how we became a family of five overnight. When I found the Adoption Social website and began to share my blogs on a weekly basis I was inspired by the other writers to continue to post about the daily highs and lows of parenting our girls.

Tea/Gin?
Tea.

What is the best or most memorable piece of advice you have ever received?
To take care of yourself, to be kind to yourself and not to expect too much from anyone, including yourself.

My perfect adoption support would include
Supernanny, cook, cleaner, chauffer, live in babysitter and an expert on raising adoptive children on hand.

The best thing we did this week was….
Packing a picnic and heading out to a favourite family spot. The sun was shining, kids were playing and my husband and I were able to relax and enjoy the moment.

If you could take your children anywhere in the world to see something where would you go?
I’m not sure I could pick one place, as there are so many wonderful things to see and do. We went to the airport at the weekend to pick up a close relative. Whilst we were there we saw some planes coming into land and taking off. It was great to see the girls’ faces light up with excitement. I think when they are a little older it would be fantastic to travel abroad with them and to give them that experience.

Meet The Blogger – Travels with my son

Today we meet Isobel – the blogger behind ‘Travels with my son’ – read on to find out photo (5)more…
Quick 5 – In my life at the moment
 
Music-
I sing in a choir and we have a concert at the weekend, so Mozart’s Requiem is on endlessly at the moment until I’ve got all the notes. It’s the first piece of choral music I ever sang, and one of my favourites. It’s in competition with J’s choices though… which are much louder and less classical, shall we say. I go to live music events when I can and I like all sorts – recently opera and folk – and I’m just about to book to see the Unthanks in concert in the autumn. 
 
TV programme-
I don’t watch much TV at all, and only really turn it on for the news, QI and Antiques Roadshow. Oh, and I quite like a few of the cookery programmes. 
 
Food-
We love our food! Cooking is one of my ways of winding down at the end of the day. My mother was French and we grew up with delicious food, and my father’s sister ran her own catering company, where I used to help out sometimes at weekends. So food has always had an important place in our family. J is starting to build up his own repertoire in the kitchen too. I think how to cook and how to eat well are two of the most important things we can teach our children. We go camping every summer with our local Woodcraft Folk group, and my role there is KP … or Keeper of the Provender (or as the kids call it, the kitchen person). It’s the best job, as I get to be in charge of all the food for 60 or 70 of us for the week, and watch over the young people while they do the cooking. Everyone except me has to take their turn at washing up. Perfect!
 
Book-
My time for reading is on the tube on the way in to work. Just started Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel which everyone says is great. 
 
Pastime-
The singing is important for me and what I missed terribly when J first came to me and I stopped going out. It took me years to get back into being able to make a regular weekly commitment again, and I wish it hadn’t taken so long. I do Pilates once a week now while J is at one of his things, and swim once a week. In the early days of adoption I found it very hard getting out. Without a partner I could leave J with, and with the sheer cost of regular babysitters, quite apart from finding someone with enough experience to look after my anxious child, it was hard. It’s one huge advantage of their getting older. Nowadays I am free to go to films, plays and music pretty often really. My darling sister and friends were always offering to help but I didn’t want to lean on others too much. Too independent for my own good!
 
What do you think is your biggest source of support?
My number one supporter has been my sister Camilla and I’m not sure now that I could have done all of this without her. She lives up the road with her husband and three daughters. The children have all gone to the same schools, and get on well, so they have been a fantastic support for J too. We shared a childminder when they were younger (what would I have done without them too?). My sis is amazingly strong and a fantastic mother, and I suppose our shared upbringing means we have a particular understanding of why we parent in the ways that we each do. 
I have some amazingly lovely friends. Four years ago, I had long and hard treatment for cancer, and they carried me through that with such kindness and generosity of spirit. 
I’ve written already about how my parents have taken care of J during school holidays while I worked… And employers don’t often get much appreciation, but I’ve had some good bosses. I continued working full time when J came to me, but two days each week I left work early so I could pick him up from school, and I made the hours up at home in the evenings. It might have been easier for them to say no to this arrangement, but they didn’t. Later on, when I wanted to go part-time, they helped with that too. 
 
What is the best or most memorable piece of advice you have ever received?
That thing about faking it till you make it has sometimes resonated with me. In the first year in particular, I had some very low times. My friend who works in the adoption field, told me if necessary, and for J’s welfare, I just had to fake it. I didn’t always manage though. 
 
If you could take your child anywhere in the world to see something where would you go?
J and I are good travellers, and there are so many places I’d like to go with him. I’m very conscious though that the time might come quite soon when he doesn’t want to go away with his old mum! So in the next two years we have to visit Mexico and Peru, travel overland to Australia, and walk several long distance trails in the UK. In my dreams! 
 
What I hope I can give to my child?
I met J’s birthmother once and one of the things I asked her was what she hoped for for his future. She said she just wanted him to be happy and lead a normal life. I think all parents the world over want the same thing really for their children. I hope that I can help J with his life skills, and ensure he has choices in the future. Having choices is important. 
 
At the weekend I can mostly be found…
At the edge of a rugby pitch I’m afraid at this time of the year. In our little London garden when it warms up a bit. Trying to persuade J to do his homework (our biggest battles have always been fought over this). Eating and drinking with family and friends. 
 
What makes you laugh?
J and his jokes. He cracks me up.