September. The month with all the uncertainty that surrounded James's emergency eye surgery. September. The month when, on Monday, we made our first, but I doubt our last, dash to A&E with Samuel. He had a mild rash which we weren't too worried about until the GP uttered phrases such as "can't rule out meningitis" and "better to be safe than sorry". Cue a mad dash to the hospital, a gut-wrenching wait and, finally, a simple shot of Piriton and a paediatrician's reassurance that it was just a virus. By the evening he was doing much better but, my, what a fright. That night, before I put him into his cot, I held him that little bit closer for that little bit longer.
September. The month when, two years' ago today, a family of four went into a different hospital in a different town and came out a family of three. The month when calendars and diaries cast their morose shadow and remind me, albeit ever so briefly, of those sad final days with Dad rather than the countless happy ones. The important ones.
Oh and there are other things too. There are the bully boy freeholders who want to carry out major - and entirely unnecessary - works to our building and charge us thousands of pounds for the privilege. There's the end of my maternity leave looming on the horizon and the enormous decisions that need to be made about my future and about Samuel's. I'm absolutely convinced that I will pull my head out of the sand any day now.
But whoa there, Drama Queen Doreen. This month might have been a bit of a roller coaster, but it's not all been bad. I'm coming out of it a lot more grateful than I was going into it. I'm grateful for my husband's sight. I'm grateful for my son's health. (And, since he's just learned how to stick his tongue out and decided that burps are hilarious, it's quite literally rude health.) I'm grateful for our family. I'm grateful for our friends.
What's more I was thrilled to discover during last night's CBeebies Bedtime Story that I read Giraffes Can't Dance about a million times better than that bloke who plays Al Capone in Boardwalk Empire. And honestly, I can't tell you how good that feels.
But, you know. Roll on October.