We did it!
A whole week away, a week which took a huge amount of planning and one which, if I'm honest, was a gamble for all of us but it worked and it worked better than I could possibly have hoped.
Overnight stays there and back helped the long drive which I'd been dreading, holiday crowds were mostly avoided through walks and sunbathing, books were devoured for the first time in months and I've come home feeling just a little light headed as a result of seven responsibility free days.
Jake checked in every couple of days to let me now how things were going and, other than a couple of minor incidents, they seem to have managed very well without me proving what I suspected all along, no-one is indispensable.
I slept well, I ate out, I walked, I picnicked on hills overlooking bright blue bays and I relaxed more than I would ever have thought possible.
And then I came home to the biggest and tightest hug from Ash plus an admission that he'd missed me which was far more than I expected. Not only that but he too has been lighter, the jokes have been coming thick and fast, the old people-watching skills are clear to see as we've been out and about and it's almost like having the old Ash back.
My message here then, to all of you who wonder if it's possible or worth it, is to give it a go. Think carefully, plan meticulously, leave nothing unconsidered, but try it. For the two of us it's been well worth all that effort, and as for Jake's role in it all I have a little story. Yesterday we went out to get him a birthday card. I was browsing, unable to make up my mind, when Ash swooped on the perfect card and announced that was the one. Not only that but when we got it home he was the one to write in it. I may have had to write out what he wanted to say first but he copied it and, even though he struggled, he was determined to do it all by himself. That's something he hasn't attempted in over three years.
One other thing, if you're going to do this make sure you have proper back up. I couldn't have done this without Jake, without friends in the village who kept an eye on the two of them, without support and advice from the professionals involved with us and I'm very grateful to every one of them. My final mention goes to the friend with the holiday cottage in Cornwall. Without her this really might not have happened but it did and it was wonderful.
I haven't given the detail in this post but if you really think you'd like to try a trip away and you're not sure where to start or you have just one difficulty you'd like another view point on then feel free to email me at the email address below. I might have some ideas.
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