“oh, DD – just had an email from Mrs Scary-Pianoteacher saying she’ll be in today to give the lesson you missed on Monday when school was closed.”

*cue floods of tears*

“what do you mean you’ve lost your music folder? I thought Mrs Form-Teacher gave it back to you last week?”

“oh. you’ve lost it again, since then. so does that mean you haven’t done any practice either? oh dear.”

*pause for self-flagellation that I haven’t noticed severe lack of piano practice in last ten days. moving swiftly on*

self and DD hunt through entire house in twelve minutes. no sign of music folder. she thinks she may have left it at an after-school activity last Friday.

“well, you’ll have to tell Mrs S-P you’ve lost it. yes. again.”

“yes, she will tell you off. what do I tell you to do if you have a problem?”

“that’s right. talk to someone. don’t keep it inside. because if I had known this we could have checked at the hall and if you did leave it there we would have been able to pick it up earlier. and the problem would have been solved. and now the problem has grown because you tried to ignore it.”

“I know you are scared. no, I can’t tell Mrs S-P for you. you need to do that.”

“because that is the consequence of not dealing with a problem straight away. and so you need to deal with that consequence. and, sweetheart, it is okay to make mistakes. we all make mistakes. but when we make them we need to face up to them and take the consequences and move on. and then they will go away. not just be hidden away inside. really, really go away. and what is being brave?”

“yes. feeling afraid and doing it anyway. and we learn to do hard things by doing them. like riding a bike. the only way is to do it, yes?”

“and the other thing, honey, is that it is not going to be as bad as you think it is going to be. and you will feel so much better afterwards. I promise.”

*tear-stained DD droops towards school*

“oh, and DD, remember what Maya Angelou said: You are a child of God. Stand up straight.

*gives DD massive hug*

not as funny as dear Joyce, maybe. but me expressing my own little personality 😉

and talking to my own ten year old self, perhaps, just a little bit. now, if I can just do for myself what I tell my daughter to do….

afterword: music folder was at hall. DD and folder re-united prior to music lesson 🙂