“And they raise so much money for charity it isn’t true,” I said naively.
Pinkie’s eyes switched into those of a late 70’s Action Man, I could see the words weaving through her mind, until within a millisecond she said the words;
“Mum, you could do it for Cystic Fibrosis.”
“Mmm maybe,” was all I came up with.
It pains me now to even remember the missed opportunity.
“And I will have a cake stall after school to help raise some money.”
“I could wash Dad’s car,” offered Blue reluctantly, but feeling he needed to offer something, “and give you the money.”
“I’m sure the Brownies would all help too,” said Pinkie.
“Yes, that all seems like a good idea, I’ll have a wee think about it.”
“I’ll sponsor you,” offered Mr with the widest grin I have ever seen.
“But I’d need new trainers and they are very expensive,” I tried weakly.
“I’ll have one shoe for my birthday, and Blue could have the other one for his,” offered the dearest little girl in the world. Blue could hardly disagree and mumbled that it would be fine by him if it was really, really necessary.
“I’ll look into it, but think the entry process is ages away,” I said before heading out to the kitchen for more coffee and an escape route.
It was Bank holiday weekend, and we were heading over to Wild Owl’s for dinner (see blog post Reluctant Owl 11/1/16). After a few shandies I told Wild Owl and the other dinner guests about that morning’s conversation, and I fully expected them to say; ‘phew, how are you going to get out of that one?’ or ‘put a pebble in your shoe and limp until they forget,’ but no, this band of sadists agreed with the children, some even offered to do it with me. The noose was tightening. I had more wine to blot it out.
Monday morning I woke thirstier than a hungover camel, my mouth felt drier than a Hoover bag.
“Morning Mummy,” chorussed Pinkie and Blue.
I tried to reply, but my tongue was attached to the roof of my mouth with what felt like sand and grit.
“I made you breakfast,” said Pinkie offering me a plate of buttery toast.
“And I made tea,” came the nicest, most heart warming sentence Blue has ever uttered.
Once mobility had been restored to my larynx, my breath was taken away.
“We have done some research and you can go in for the ballot for the marathon today, here’s the iPad with it all loaded up.”
The tea hadn’t replenished the liquid in my body enough to produce tears.
“Soon. I’ll look soon. I’m too weak to even get out of the bed.”
“Are you poorly Mum,” asked Blue nervously.
“It might be a virus,” I said bravely.
The weather changed into bleak mid winter and we all huddled on the sofa with the TV blanket and more tea.
“Let’s watch the Invictus Games programme,” said Blue.
Within minutes my corner of the TV blanket was damp from tears. The sight of these amazing people triumphing over everything that has been thrown at them and still coming out on top was incredible. I also enjoyed watching Prince Harry (a lot).
Pinkie was sitting on the floor doing her salty nebuliser, coughing up gank and huffing and puffing as she has been instructed to do. Never does she moan about it, or her lot, she just does as she has been told to do to keep herself well. Hers is for the long haul, the endurance test that never lets up.
“Hand me the iPad,” I said.
“Are you registering?”
“Oh Mummy, we’re so proud of you.”
I looked at the telly and saw a young man mucking around in the luggage hold of a plane, minus his legs but with a massive smile, and thought between him and Pinkie I really have no excuses.
So, now we wait. I’m hoping that I don’t get a place, leaving my conscious clear with minimal effort, and a pair of knees that still work, but if I do get a place, once I’ve stopped crying, I’ll get training and remember my Pinkie every time the going gets tough.