A friend called round today. A woman who, at times it seems to me, possesses the life force of ten. Who is strong, creative and clever, and who is a good friend to those lucky enough to be in her life.
She has watched of late, her eldest child, alter bit by bit from a bright, funny and beautiful girl - to a nervous, hand-ringing wreck. Who suffers panic attacks and who doesn't - really doesn't - want to go back to school. It would break a mothers heart - and what would any of us do? Speak to those in charge, demand they intervene, spend every spare minute reminding your girl of how very, very loved she is. Tell her time and again she has the strongest team in the world - her family - on her side.
But when tried and tested action plans have no effect, and when the very people who could - and should - take responsibility, turn a blind eye, what then is there to do? Extreme measures - a new school, a new year, and a new start. But a girl saved, a family sleeping through the night, and the next 8 years of a child's life hit the ground running on a better track.
This happy ending did not come easy - perseverance and an utter devotion to protecting a loved one did. I applaud my friend for that. And her girl won't forget. When she had neither weapons nor the understanding to fight a battle that was not of her making, her mother told her 'You are powerful, you are our girl, you are loved'. She will not forget. She will carry those words as a shield - she will grow taller and stronger and much more beautiful, and when faced again with those who show neither love, compassion or shame, she will know herself to be better, to be strong, to be OK - and most importantly of all - to be loved... x