Way back in summer, I was walking past a shop in Chichester and I saw a most magical dress hanging in a shop window.  It looked as if it had all the colours of the rainbows splashed on it. When I ventured closer to have another look, I noticed that there were little mandalas sewed onto the dress!


On impulse, I bought it, even without looking at the price tag. I do not have daughters or nieces of that age, but I knew the dress was too special for me just to walk pass it.

I stuffed it in the bottom of my luggage because I didn’t want my partner to tease me about being broody.  For a while, the dress rested there.

And then in a lightbulb moment, I knew who that dress is meant for. It’s for a little girl who is very special. She is special because her mother made her special.  Her mother, like mine, put everything into her little girl …. and here’s the thing: without the resentment, the itchy feet, the price tag.

I do not know this lady personally, but I follow her Facebook posts, and that is saying a lot as I seldom read the Newsfeed.  Over the years, I have seen her grown as a mother – she is still slightly anxious and frets too much about the minutiae, but I have seen a beautiful metamorphosis in her.  I can tell from her posts that she is enjoying motherhood more in recent months and it gladdens my heart.

You see, I have learned one thing. A woman can be a stay-at-home mum easily if finances allow, but to be one who immerses herself fully in the task without once taking her eyes off to wonder at outside opportunities, that is the special part. I don’t have it.  There has always been a little voice in me, impertinent and mischievous, telling me to write books, stay in my profession, go away on retreat on my own, live ….. unlike my mother, for whom the home is her whole universe. I am not the woman my mother is, though for 30 years I have done my best and am happy with the outcomes. Now it is my time to give in to the little voice, but I will always be drawn to the concept of mummy-at-home.

I told my partner about the dress. He put his arms around me. “You’re going to make some little girl very happy, Jac, when she receives it.”

“It’s actually for her mother,” I replied cryptically.

He laughed. “I love the way you look at the world, Jac, the way you love random people.”

And I thought to myself, looking at his eyes, thanking God, this is how you love me, Tyson Fury, exactly in the same way this mother loves her child and the way my  mother loves me.