You may suddenly realise that you are in uncharted parenting territory, when instead of being referred to by your name, you suddenly become ‘Harry’s Mum’ or even just ‘Mum’. It jars a bit at first, but with a class of over 30, you understand why the teacher does it. You understand how harried the GP is. And it kind of fits with the general loss of personal identity that comes with being a Mother.

But when you’re at your 3rd Special Educational Needs meeting about a difficulty your child is having at school, and there are 5 professionals there (all of whose names you took time to know) it really helps with the communication and partnership if you can please learn my name too.

If I’ve been on a children’s hospital ward for the 7th sleepless night, it really is the nurses that take time to use my name that make a difficult situation so much more bearable. And the teachers who really acknowledge our family dynamics and even recall the name of our pets. Thank you. I see you too, and am so grateful for the hard work you put in behind the scenes to manage a fragile budget to deliver care and education – even when it is an impossible task.

Thank you for using my name.

You might be wondering what’s with me using paint chip colours and names on my website and in the Counselling room. Well, I just love them. The names make my heart sing! And if you’re lucky, I’ll bring the paint chips into one of our counselling sessions and you can check in at the start of a session with how you’re feeling (I can always share my screen of paint chip colours if we’re working creatively online too). Today for me was ‘Worn Canvas – colour R82C’,  just one of those days… there is always tomorrow ‘Optimistic Outlook – R219E’.

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