Lucy took the empty chair next to her mum, and wrapped her hands around one of the mugs. She looked into Lesley’s eyes, and her Mum could seem the depth of her sadness.
“Why did this happen Mum? I’m not a baby, why did I wet my bed like one? Even Jack doesn’t do that anymore!”
“Oh sweetheart, it’s just one of those things. Just a silly accident, not worth getting so upset over. Maybe you just had a little too much to drink before bed, or forgot to go for a wee? The horrible dream you were having probably didn’t help either. Do you think talking about that will help? It’s up to you.”
“It was horrible, mummy. I was so scared and upset in my dream, and I screamed but that was for real and it woke me up. It was like I kept reliving what happened yesterday, there I was in the classroom having an accident and everybody laughing. Then the older kids from the internet, they were all there too. They wouldn’t stop laughing, making fun of me, calling me names and pretending I was a baby.”
Lesley melted as she listened to this, her poor poor daughter. How she wished she could wipe it all away from her memory, just pretend that the past 24hrs hadn’t happened so that she would have her confident, care free little girl back again.
She also felt her anger rising once more as she thought about how the bullies had made Lucy so very miserable, didn’t thy stop to think about the impact their words would have? How anybody could be like that she had no idea, and she was immensely proud that her own two children were growing up to be kind, compassionate people just as she had herself been raised.
Taking Lesley completely by surprise, Lucy climbed over into her mothers lap, and they sat and cuddled like this for the best part of an hour as they drank their drinks and munched on the biscuits, all without saying another word. Just the closeness was enough, and Lucy slowly unwound and relaxed again. It was an intimate moment of love between mother and daughter which meant so very much to both of them.
Noticing the time, Lesley straightened up and announced to Lucy “Come on darling, let’s try to get a few more hours sleep before it’s time to get up for school, eh? Otherwise we’re both going to be exhausted in the morning!”
The pair slowly climbed the stairs together, pausing on the landing briefly.
“Do you want to try to go to the toilet love, just in case?” This caused Lucy to blush furiously, but not prepared to take any chances she gave a tiny nod and then disappeared into the bathroom. Lesley took this time to check on Jack again, finding he hadn’t moved an inch since she’d last looked in on him, and again thinking how lucky it was that he hadn’t been roused, so that Lucy’s dignity had been preserved.
Hearing the toilet flush and Lucy running water to wash her hands, Lesley held a hand out to the young girl, who took it gladly. They continued along the landing, with Lucy automatically stopping outside her bedroom door. She looked up questioningly at her Mum “Where Am I going to sleep Mum?” This was all new to her, and she hadn’t a clue!
“We really need to give your mattress a little time to dry out properly, so why don’t you come and snuggle up with me in my bed? Just this once, mind, so don’t be getting too used to it! And don’t even think about doing this agin, just so you can sleep in the big bed.” she added with a chuckle.
“Muuuuuuuuum! How can you even say that? This…this will NEVER, EVER happen again. It just can’t!”
And with that, Lucy let go of Lesley’s hand and snuck into her own bedroom, reappearing only moments later with her teddy bear in her arms, looking rather sheepish. But she didn’t really care, right at that moment she needed the warmth and comfort he brought to her. Lesley just smiled and guided them both into her bedroom.
As they settled back against the plump, soft pillows and with the velvety duvet pulled up to their chins, they bade each other goodnight, with Lelsley leaning over to kiss her daughter gently on the forehead, and then extinguishing the lights so that the room was plunged into total darkness.
It felt like hours that they lay aware there, side by side and each turning over in their own heads the events of the past day, but both must have fallen into a deep sleep for they were not disturbed again until a feint sound caused Lesley to open just half an ear, followed by a slit of an eye, enough to see young Jack peeking around her doorframe. Slowly pulling herself upright and slotting her glasses onto her head, all the while trying to avoid disturbing Lucy who continued to sleep peacefully beside her, Lesley eventually managed to focus properly on Jack and whispered a hoarse “Good Morning” across to him, patting the small space next to her in the bed and gesturing for him to come over.
“Morning Mummy! Is t time to get up now? Why’s Lucy in bed with you?”1
Audio Version of Chapter