5.30am alarm. Pop down for a quick shower. Pickle is awake. Last night he was feverish and he has not had enough sleep. I cuddle him for a few precious moments and persuade him to drift off. Quick shower and out the door. Drive to a station about 30 minutes from home. Lose £1.50 in the Pay & Display machine. Give in and pay for parking by phone. I am, of course, early. Collect tickets and wait for train. Arrives on time and for the first leg of my journey I relive the first 6 months of the year in the text messages that are on my phone. Lots of good wishes, some cryptic and amusing messages from my 'bossfriend' and some sad ones from close friends who are going through IVF.
Second leg - disappointing pain au chocolat and milky, milky tea. Reading The Age of Innocence that my bossfriend bought me for Christmas to encourage my appreciation of classic literature. Took me a while to get into it but I am now really enjoying it - hoping to finish it on this journey with no little people to interrupt. Occassionally my mind strays back to work. I spend a few minutes contemplating a loyalty proposition and then go back to gazing out the window.
I find this type of journey quite liberating in a 'I could go anywhere' kind of way. Today I am a Mum but I'm not being a Mum and I'm not doing what I do every day I go to work. No one here knows who I am. I think I am proud of who I am but I also like the idea of maybe being someone else just for a day. I wonder about the people around me. I dream about where I could get off the train, where could I go? York? Glasgow?
The reality of my day ahead? I am visiting a call centre and meeting up with one of my team who is underperforming. She's a lovely lady - in my opinion, she's in the wrong job. She'd be fantastic in another job and happier, I think. I would like for her to see that without feeling she is failing. Easy to say I know. Last time we met, we had a difficult review and I am apprehensive about meeting up today.
Third leg - I cry. Eventually, if I spend enough time on my own, it is almost inevitable I will cry. I don't think that's a bad thing at all. It means I am actually feeling. I am not numb. I am not overly accepting. I am still sad. I miss my son. It has been almost 3 years since he died and I wish he was here. I am human.
9.52am, I arrive. I am calm.