In the forest


Sat outside the camping pod on the blue fold out chair.

Watching the beauty of the forest.

The children are sleeping wrapped up on the ground in bags and blankets.

Where does one day begin? Where does another day end?

Time. A record. A document. A moment captured.

Here. Now. Then. Gone.

The woods. A camping pod.

A clump of moss tumbles slowly down from the tree and lands softly just below my feet.

Or is it a piece of  lichen?

The leaves, Sycamore are just emerging.

Ba Ba of a lamb.

Silence other than birds singing.

Rocks and some burnt wood where Syd attempted his “own” fire. Some children already playing, running around with their pet dog. This is far too early.

<some notes missing>

Syd tore out some pages of this book to light his fire. He is resourceful, he also used a sanitary towel. I’m a bit annoyed about the note pad, but I have no fight in me. Can’t be bothered to make much of a fuss about it. He did take care not to tug out drawings, but some of my writing is missing. Not important. A blank can be just as interesting, just as revealing. Perhaps I should leave more blanks. Why did I set myself the rule of writing every day. Even Plath didn’t manage to write every day. Her journals are full of blanks. Perhaps nothing is important. There needs to be a breathing space. A full stop, an opportunity to breath to let the dust settle, to think over. To stop. To rest. I should give myself a rest. Its been four months solid now.

Perhaps not a rest, perhaps a celebration is needed, but even this takes energy and work. Need to find the time, scrape it up, gather it in, muster the energy. Gather a crowd. A congregation. A gathering. Am I writing this for me or for you or for both. Who cares who it is for. Words move across the digital screen. The barrier. The skin. The porous skin. Some seeps in some seeps out. Breath. Breath the air of the forest. Clean. Fresh. Alive with oxygen. Fill your lungs. Fill your heart. Open to the birds, the bugs, the bees and the boys a plenty.

Play hide and seek, but don’t hide too deep. The floor of the forest is covered in pine cones, delicate purple violets, yellow primroses, dandelions, white wood anemone’s and bluebells opening. The children play hide and seek. They hide. I seek. I get anxious when I cannot find Naoise. He hides well.

They don’t move. There are plenty of places to hide and the forest is deep with hiding holes. The boys are small and nimble and they hold their breaths and they lie flat to the floor. They do and don’t want to be found, and when they cannot be found they make themselves known by squeaking or suddenly jumping up and the game is over and starts again and again. They love to play hide and seek and the time passes fast.

Sometimes Syd is rude. He does not mean to be. Its easy to be mean to your mother. A mother forgives easily. Sometimes Syd just refuses. He refuses to co-operate. He refuses to help. I ignore. I try to ignore. I try not to be drawn in. Walk away. Walk away. Drink some red wine for comfort.

Naoise stomach is disdended, swollen with shit. Shit that gets stuck in his bowels for days and becomes a meg shit a super shit a shit so big and so heavy it could knock you down. Poor love he is paralysed by the super shit and can’t shit it out. If I were him I too would be scared of shit. No matter what I do he does not seem to grow out of it as the GP said he wouldNo amount of lactose or  fibre rich food or exercise or warm baths or massaging seems to work. We just get stuck in shit. A shitty circle of shit. I really hate it. I hate to see him suffer and I hate to have to clear up shit. Be stuck in shit. Shitty days of shit. Shitty days of shit whilst camping with friends ain’t much fun for anyone.


I am glad that the showers on the site are free. We spend a lot of time having showers and cleaning up shit. Thats ok, its warm and cosy in the shower room and there is even a heater to stand beside.

I forgot all the torches. No where to be found in the stash of stuff piled high in the car. Check again. My kind friend leant me her lantern. I am glad of it. Darkness is dark dark dark in the forest. I fear the dark dark. I had panic attacks at my parents home in Scotland. It is so dark dark there. No street lamps just the stars and the moon to light the night sky.

Fall asleep with the children at 10.30pm. Wake around 7am

The children play wild in the woods, dressed in their onesies. Theres a tiger, a gruffalo, a peekachoo, and two power rangers, They bounce and they jump and they skip and slide and disappear momentarily above the tree line. The boys are at their happiest outside in the little wild. Wild in the forest. Being swallowed by the forest. Touching the forest floor with their feet. Sturdy as sheep on their feet. Agile. Fast. In a world of their own.

Syd attempts to light a fire on his own. He finds a sanitary towel, I find later pages ripped from……..

At the

Getting to the campsite.

Lovely to collect Naoise early from school. He is delighted to see my face.

He hugs his friend goodbye. We are excited. Its been a while since we went away on a holiday alone.

Sydney arrives at the car with a bottle of coke. He keeps buying bad drinks. I hate it. All the sugar, rotting his teeth, filling his body with fake fuel. He needs to learn. I don’t drink lots of sugar drinks so its not from me. He seems to crave sugar and carbohydrate. Maybe this is an ordinary teenage diet. I did eat a lot of Mars Bar breakfasts at his age.

Misbehaving. One minute sweet angel. Playing football with the little boys. The next minute devil. Its not fair. Its not fair you said I could go mountain biking, you said I could bring a friend. Spend time with me, not with them. Mother hating devilish boy.  Swinging from one mood to the other. Moody. Hormonal. Teenage. Boy-Man. I love you.



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