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Just a quick entry to report that bringing ED down to the coast was a brilliant idea, but utterly exhausting. I slept like the dead until mid-morning today, still had a three hour nap this afternoon and am barely functional now.

I think it was the anxiety before she arrived as much as anything - would she be OK, would the journey be too much, would any of the family I'd invited turn up, oh shit, I forgot all about providing food and drink... etc etc.

In the event she was fine when she arrived, loads of aunts, uncles and cousins came along and all four of my great-nieces - I'd forgotten the ones via ED's dad's sister's daughter - and several brought plenty of food, having correctly estimated the likelihood of me remembering. It was pretty mellow too, all grudges were left behind so everyone played nice. There's something about seeing ED, someone we've all known forever as a gobby, bossy, little person, reduced in this way, that makes everyone know what matters and what doesn't. So it was good. ED laughed a lot, held people's hands, drank half a cup of tea and even managed to eat some cake. I'm not convinced she recognised everyone, but so it goes.

Driving her home was shit though. It was the only way I could work it, to take her home myself with one of her cousins who lives in south London sitting in the back with her, but it was one of my worst driving experiences ever as I was soooo tired, to the point of being a bit scared by it. Took me five hours, there and back, including dropping the cousin back to her place. Then the fucking tunnel through the downs was closed, turning the last five minutes from home into twenty minutes of roundabouts and traffic lights instead of smooth dual-carriageway, hassle-free driving. That was the point at which I wept like a baby, when I saw the flashing signs saying it was closed, fuckers.

Today I am grateful for: the nerve to push for doing things like this for/with ED; a big comfy bed; the gas people coming quickly when I phoned and said I could smell gas out in the street; being able to sleep for hours; being a mum and a granny

Laters xxx

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