Thursday 24 July 2014


I have to say there have been some dark days at Coates Towers where duty and commitment have carried love through what seemed impossible circumstances and unmanageable behaviour.  Faces were set as flint, loins were girded, upper lips were stiffened and we pushed through.

I know that I am not the man I was before these days and the difficult times have taken their toll. I’ve learnt to guard my heart, my hopes and expectations lowered in the face of an altered reality of parenting.

But then the other day something happened.

I was sitting in our kitchen and Flossy stopped as she walked past me.

She looked at me, leant towards me, cupped my face with her hands and kissed me on the nose.

She beamed a smile at me and ran off.

A manifestation of her happiness.

A happiness that overflowed into an expression of love and affection.

Now if you have followed my blog for a while you’ll appreciate that this is not a normal manifestation of her IWM (Internal WorkingModel). I refer you to the Kung foo incident as a more usual manifestation.

With every passing day the memory of this kiss refuses to fade and if anything my appreciation of it grows.
It is perhaps a glimmer of what could and may be.
A picture of her happiness and contentment.

To misquote John Wesley, I feel a strange warming of my heart.

I know that one swallow does not make a spring and who knows what the future holds.

But for today I’ll take a kiss off my daughter and a glimmer of hope that it might all be ok in the end.


  1. Hello, I am new to your blog. I read you talking about hope, and I too seek to hope more, as the day to day with a RAD child can wear on me. I call him "Boy". He's been gone this week, off with his birth grandparents. And i talked to him on the phone today. He's been gone since Monday. Do you miss home, I asked. His answer was a cold, "No". That hurts much... He's been with us for almost 12 months... So I hope. I hope and I hope. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you for your comment and your honesty.
    Hope has no rhyme or reason and can spring in the bleakest of situations. At times we've felt more like carers and that's what was needed for that time and it felt like a long time. I hope you can find a route through and are provided with the appropriate support from family, friends and professionals.

  3. N16Dadda on Twitter. The first time our daughter came up to me and stroked my face, I nearly died of happiness. One incident like this has created a bottomless supply of patience and fortitude. She has been away this week and firmly disinterested in talking to me on the phone but I can still feel her tiny hands on my cheeks and that's all I need. Thank you for writing this. btw - superb voice to your writing.

    1. Thank you for your compliment.
      It amazes me that we are so resilient, we manage to absorb so many challenging experiences fuelled by the occasional 'good' moment.
      Stay well.

  4. Sometimes (often) I feel terrible as a parent. The reality of being a mum is often so far removed than the fantasy I had. I wanted (and still want) kisses, cuddles, closeness, intimate chats, laughter, joking, fun. What I actually actually get when I try to offer some of these elements of relationship is rejection, disdain, anger, recklessness, and punishment.
    But every now and again, I get something lovely that makes me realise that we are making progress. And something great I've discovered is that when we move forward, we don't usually go back. I hope it's the same for you and you get lots more lovely moments.
    2 out of 3

    1. Thank you for your honest comments, I wish I had words that can salve. After the trials and tribulations of the adoption journey to not have achieved what we set out for is almost unbearable.
      We take our moments where we can.

  5. A lovely moment, and one to cherish. I too cling to moments like those, for it's what gets me through the dark days.

    Thanks for linking to #WASO x

  6. Lovely moment, and lovely post :-)

  7. A lovely moment and hopeful sign of many more to come. Adoption is such a Rollercoaster. Someone once said to me have faith rather than hope :) Just found your blog through twitter so I will be back to read some more. Love a good honest blog that let's others know they are not the only ones with those feelings.
    Sophia from

    1. Welcome. Thank you for commenting and encouraging. I'm trying to just be us and reflect the good, bad and the lots in between.