Almost all the progress in diminishing Marie's agoraphobia have disappeared. Apart from a small improvement in her diet, all the agoraphobia-busting routines that she had observed have also disappeared, and with them the hope that she's making the effort to change her condition. I have to accept that Marie's inability to follow through with any sort of treatment or routine is part of her problem.
This means that the greater part of childcare - virtually all of it outside our home - continues to fall on me. I enjoy this immensely, but regret the absence of a mum for the children when embarking on excursions. And Marie misses so much - I sometimes wonder if she knows how much of her children's lives are currently inaccessible to her.
For example - here I am, making a fool of myself on the trampoline at Carla's house. Orla thought this was hysterically amusing. Marie wasn't able to get to the trampoline - it's about 10m from the back door of Carla's house.
The children love to "explore" and there is lots of exploration available all around us! Below, the ferns make this deer path seem like a trip through the jungle.
Marie may never see this pebble mound, on a beach a few miles from our home. Click on the picture if you want to read the inscription on the stone.
A dried-up ancient harbour is fascinating for children, who imagine pirate ships going in and out... In reality, all that passed through the entrance to this harbour were small goods ships carrying away the lime which was burned beside the harbour and bringing in coal to use in the lime kiln. But why spoil a good story by introducing the truth?
This is what that harbour looked like about 100 years ago. If you want to see the full-size picture, just click on it.
We have lots of beach activities. The children are never bored on a beach!
Plenty of activities for the children and me through the summer, then. Does Marie really know what she's missing? Perhaps I'm being somewhat pessimistic. Perhaps Marie will recover lost ground.
Nothing would make me happier.