Ida, Always

Last week there was an author visit to #1 Son’s school, so I purchased the two recommended books for her to sign. Sadly, due to the damn inclement weather they didn’t arrive in time. But, he still has them, so at least he is not left out when his classmates read them. He picked the first off his story book shelf tonight:I knew roughly the premise – it’s to help children deal with death. But I should have read it first. Halfway through I was choked up, and by three quarters in I was full on ugly crying. This is a truly apt description. The book is both haunting and heartbreaking and truly beautiful. Both in story and in illustration. What I had prepared for was some questions, but I had honestly hoped that the subtext might fly over his head

Things like this often do

But sadly, no such luck. He asked some very hard questions.

What will happen to me when you and daddy die? You are big and I am small. I will be all alone.

God my heart broke when he asked that. I think I handled it okay. We didn’t gloss over it, nor did we hide the truth. In fact, daddy went into quite a lot of detail about burial and cremation when #1 Son asked what happened to Ida after she died. (There is a reason I get him to help with the bigger questions). But there was a side effect we didn’t expect. A complete outpouring of grief regarding his former school in general, and one friend in particular. Floored me and his dad completely. But he was so distraught we are endeavouring to see if we can put them back in touch with each other if we can. I did also send an email to his class teacher, school counsellor and his own personal therapist outlining the above as well. As we say online: this is well above my pay grade!

Author: Fliss

Wife, mum (of two), yarn-obsessed cat-slave

One thought on “Ida, Always”

  1. I am tempted to order that book for myself, especially since we now have some shelf space: between us we took well over a hundred books to the charity shop, many of them big, heavy coffee table books. Yesterday as I slowly struggled the few yards from my car to the charity shop with batch #3, no less than 3 people stopped to offer me their assistance! In snooty Thame!! I very politely turned down the first because she was very skinny and would probably have collapsed and died of a heart attack. And the second, because I was very near the shop and it had become a matter of pride. But I said to the third, a hunky young chap: “yes please, if you could open the door of the charity shop for me.” Inside the shop, the manager asked me if I would mind taking the books upstairs!!! I declined.
    Just one batch left…

    Regarding Nathan, it would be wonderful if he could exchange emails, with plenty of photos, with his old school friend. And it would give him an incentive to do some written work! Could you buy him a simple digital camera and teach him how to use it?

    When Domi was a little girl, my mother once commented that she felt so tired she could die, so Domi asked who would look after her if Mummy died. Mummy replied that Daddy would find a new wife and she would become Domi’s new mummy. Domi’s reaction was: “oh, good!”. My mother burst out laughing.

    When Jo was very young, he once asked: “Mummy, when you were a little girl and when Daddy was a little boy, who looked after me?”

    What delights have you planned for tomorrow?


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