Since XP entered our world like a thunderbolt, it’s been hard as parents to let Livvy be that little independent girl she so desires. It’s the maternal and protective side of being a mother, all a mother wants to do is to protect her children, but when the one thing that your child needs protecting from is an invisible enemy it makes letting go of their hand so much harder.
I want to protect Livvy against not only UV light but all the looks and stares she constantly gets when we go out, I want to be there to answer questions that people ask her. But I can’t always be there and that’s the hardest thing.
At the weekend Livvy had an opportunity to go to the cinema with her friend and his family, it meant travelling in an unsafe car and meant I had to put my trust in my friend to keep my baby girl safe. Eddie had a football match so he couldn’t go, which left Livvy without the normal protection she gets from not only me as her mummy but from her big brother too, who often puts his arm around her when people are pointing and whispering.
A year ago I wouldn’t have entertained the idea of letting her go out without me, of course she’s been out with grandparents but letting her go with a friend is a whole new ball game. I knew she would have a great time and it would allow her some independence but knowing it’s the right thing doesn’t make it any easier to do.
Livvy has been for play dates at friends houses without me, but this felt much bigger, although I knew the local cinema was UV safe they had to get her there safely first and back home again. I packed her bag with spare gloves and extra sun cream and kissed her goodbye as I handed over the UV meter to my friend.
I didn’t worry or panic, I just handed over the responsibility of keeping Livvy safe to my friend for the morning, I enjoyed watching Eddie playing football, we even had a naughty bacon cob from the burger van. When we got back we went round to pick Livvy up, and I’m pleased to say that she had a wonderful time and ate far too much popcorn and sweets. No harm came to her. It might have been a hard thing to do but I’m glad we did it, I can’t hold Livvys hand forever and at some point she will need to learn to cope with having XP within society without me.
Little steps like this will help her live and cope with XP to the best of her ability. I will always be Livvy’s mummy, I will never stop supporting her, and for as long as she needs me I will take great pride in holding her hand.