Monthly Archives: August 2013

My La Rosa Story :)

La Rosa Big Bench

La Rosa Big Bench

On Wednesday I arrived at the campsite and met the “La Rosa crew”, they were all very nice to us. They made us a feast and we ate it outside on the new bench which was very big. I wasn’t sure what to expect because they had scary hair cuts, but I soon got to know them and they were all lovely people. After tea I helped soup up Amanda’s car with Jazz. We added green wheel rims (it was a really fun experience). We slept in the big barn called Swallow Barn, I slept on the sofa, Rose slept on the futon and mum slept on the double bed (it was a brill sleep).


Thursday – I woke up, poured myself some chocolate milk (which they gave to us), I used the loo with a view and brushed my teeth. We then got changed and met outside. In the morning we went to the beach with Amanda and Jazz but not mum. We went to the cafe where I had a coke, we then walked down to the beach where I skimmed lots of stones and caught plaice and sea eel. We walked back to the cafe and passed a very nice car. Me and Jazz asked the man if we could take a picture, he said fine. In the cafe we sat next to an old couple who had a lobster, the whole time me and Jazz laughed about him and the lobster (the lobster eating him). We had a lovely time! When I got back we had a look around the campsite with the dogs which was good fun until they got a bit too playful and decided to have a little fight with Rose and me. One of the dogs bit my leg. Mum and Amanda said I was very brave, Jazz was really sorry when she heard the news (it really wasn’t her fault but she thinks it is). The campsite was absolutely amazing! The interior of the caravans was stunning (blu-ray edition campsite)!! After that Amanda drove us to Whitby  to see our hotel which was immense (blu-ray wins again).

The three of us

The three of us

Friday- We spent the whole day at the beach in our beach hut that someone kind lent to us. I caught 3 starfish. After that we went to a scampi shack and had “guess what” scampi! We went to the amusements as well. We finished the day by going to a “interesting” puppet show – a scary fake old man and a cleaner real lady. We went upstairs to the library and mum and Amanda talked about stuff, while me, Claudia and Rose played cards, we were then joined by a boy and girl Sunny and Lola. We went upstairs to bed at 12:15 (late night).

We woke, up Claudia drove us to the station and we went home (sadly) :(

I really miss the campsite and all the lovely people who work and run it.

The people who I spent most time with were Claudia, Amanda and Jazz. I think they are amazing people with really good and interesting lives!

My Paperback Child

During the slow, hot days before No Matter What was published I felt physically ill.  I had nightmares and daymares, cold sweats, hot sweats, strange dreads came out of nowhere and I developed an aversion to the telephone.  It was not how I had expected to feel.

I had been reading Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn for our book group.  The main character is a sociopath perhaps because her parents had selfishly mined her life for their writing.  ’It’s a sign!’ I panicked. I have mined not only my own life, but those of my children, my husband, our wider families, our friends, our social workers.  What was I thinking? What kind of monster am I?  I’ve ruined my children’s lives, my relationships, my friendships.  No one is going to speak to me again.

The day that Bella magazine published a piece about the book I dreamed I was on a TV reality programme. I was trapped inside a plastic bottle with a Chinese man and we had to starve ourselves thin enough to escape from the neck of the bottle. It was another sure sign that I’d sold my soul.

But then the book came out.  I started receiving emails, tweets, phone calls, all overwhelmingly supportive.  Many confirmed why I’d taken a chance and written it. ‘I no longer feel alone’ said one.  ’A must read for anyone involved in adoption’ said another.  Five star Amazon reviews appeared.  Readers kept saying that they couldn’t put it down, had read it in one or two sittings.  Close family members and friends read it and didn’t take offence (as far as I know) but felt sadness that they had not understood what we had all been going through at the time.  (It’s almost impossible to describe it at the time.)

Rob is very proud of the book and I am immensely grateful to him for giving me the permission (and the time) to write about some of the most personal aspects of his life.  Jamie and Rose’s reactions have been to want to tell their teachers about the book (yikes!).  I have read bits out loud to them and will read more as they get older.  Their responses have been interesting. ‘Why would you be so nervous about meeting US for the first time?’ was one of the questions, their perspective being that we would judge them, not the other way around.

Writing the book was never about notoriety or money (fortunately) but about doing something small to change perspectives on adoption, to challenge some of the myths and to get more empathy and support going for children who carry around the trauma of neglect and abuse.  I’ve been told that Michael Gove may add the book to his summer reading list.  If he reads it and this in some way helps to unstick the current stand-off with respect to the provision of post-adoption support then I will have achieved more than I set out to do.

Now I am left with a sense of relief that the labour pains have been worth it (a strange analogy for a book about infertility and adoption but that’s what it’s felt like).  My paperback child is out there and will make it’s own way in the world.