Ruby thinks her life is in good order but as she lurches from choir to yoga, to Zumba and work deadlines and taking her son, Ben, to and from school and cubs and clubs, she makes sure she doesn’t have a free minute. No matter that she’s oblivious to other people’s feelings, as far as she’s concerned, she’s reasonably happy and coping. Well, everyone has self-doubts now and then, don’t they? She mostly keeps the panic attacks in check – more or less – and prides herself she can usually spot the signs and remove herself from stressful situations before they overwhelm her.
Help comes in a form she least expects when a little old man introduces himself as her Guardian Angel then challenges everything about how she chooses to live her life…
I leaned towards him to emphasise what I was saying. ‘And now you must forgive yourself and get on with being the best version of yourself that you can be. My mother used to say that to me when I was growing up. “Be the best version of yourself that you can be.” It’s only really now, talking to you, that I truly understand what she meant.’
‘May I say something please?’ said Ben in the pause that followed. We turned to him. ‘I know what it’s like to grow up without my daddy. I have Mummy and Granny and Ungrampa and I know they love me and I love them, but I can’t ever have my daddy back. You’re still alive. I think your daughter needs to know you love her. I think you should find her and tell her.’
Cameron withdrew, leaving our unlikely threesome to continue the therapy until way past Ben’s bedtime. I understood why he left, he wasn’t needed any more. I could handle the situation myself. When the time came to say goodbye, all three of us spontaneously hugged. An enormous burden had been lifted and the future would be somewhat easier to face for all of us.
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