I write this for the future me. Are you out there, future-me? Have your children left home? Do you remember when Oli was just three? Max was five and Jack was one. Every day you told them how much you loved them. You kissed Jack's eyes, like you kissed Oli's and Max's. With the older two it had become a joke; the kiss in the socket that stole an eyeball which was then chewed up and popped back in with another kiss. "I just love you," you'd say. Sometimes Max denied it. "No you don't love me!" he said that afternoon in November when he was home with an ear infection. His voice came from inside a cupboard. He'd just tried to bring the garage door down on his brother and that hadn't made you too happy. And do you remember how Oli was at three? By then you knew how the time flew, how the days were long but the years were short.
"I love you, Oli" you'd tell him.
"You say that the whole time, the whole time!" he said.
"Is that a problem?" you asked.
And what of Jack? Do you remember kissing the rolls on his neck out in the garden, tipping him back to make him giggle, and Dom saying, "Let him breathe Em!"
Remember all that? Did they break your heart?!