Day Forty-six



Mothers' Day, 10th May. I'm awake early so I make a cup of tea and tackle the plain brown carton that's been on the table since the courier came on Wednesday. I snip away the tape and inside there's a beautiful woven flax box, decorated with ribbons. Inside that are all kinds of treats. I have shortbread and fudge with my tea and send a photo and thank you note to my son and his partner.

On the radio the comedian Michelle A'Court talks about Mothers' Day, how her great-grandmother disapproved because 'if you only thank your mother once a year you're doing it wrong' and acknowledging that for many the day is complicated. For me and my brothers and sisters this is the first Mothers' Day without our mother. But I'm so lucky with my children – they're caring, witty and intelligent and seem to have forgiven me for my many faults, knowing that I wanted the best for them at every step of the way. Their partners all embrace me too and there's a flurry of messages to start the day.

Our Quaker meeting has a settled air about it, we've settled into the way of doing this remotely. Afterwards, the conversation turns to returning to the Meeting House, when that will be possible and whether we should continue online as well. Some are cautious about how meeting in person under the new conditions would work. I'm impatient to see live people again and keen to find solutions, but perhaps not as good as I need to be at listening to what others see are the obstacles. We agree to meet by Zoom next week and take it from there.

The highlights of the day are the family video calls, first with the Wellington family (we find later that in Melbourne they're sleeping in, as mothers should on this day), then all of us together. It's great to see what the babies are up to and enjoy the smiling faces of my family.

I want to get a Sunday paper and that mission grows into a longish bike ride and a full shop which fills my backpack. First, I bike out around the Haven with the wind in my face, enjoying the movement, before queuing at the supermarket, then cycling home to read the paper.

The rest of the day is quiet, routine, but it's been a heart-warming one.