A looked glum as she came out of school on Friday, all pale and tired from another week at school.
"I'm not a Maths legend, I'm not an English legend and I'm not a penguin legend," she exclaimed. I guessed she meant that she neither got all her spellings correct or her times tables. Or her penguins.
"Don't worry darling, I'm sure you did brilliantly, I make spelling mistakes all the time. We can try again next week!" I said encouragingly, not giving a toss that she didn't get them all right but caring very much that she was so upset about it.
"Let's go for a cake!" - we all smiled and agreed that this seemed a very good idea indeed. Just like that, the tests and mistakes were forgotten with a toffee covered brownie - I only wish I could heal so quickly through cake, for my mistake lies heavy on my chest, plaguing me, gnawing at me...
I rose at the unfeasibly early hour of 4.30am to plait Fletch, the great big ginger horse I ride. I had been given the chance to ride in the team dressage this weekend and I was very, very nervous. He looked beautiful, all shiny with sparkly white socks and an air of knowledge about him for he knew he was going to a competition. You see, Fletch has been there and got the battle scars to show, he has jumped higher than me, raced against the finest thoroughbreds and ponced about dressage arenas with the best. He is my teacher and I, his very eager student. And I let him down so very badly this weekend. As I entered the arena my heart was thumping and the wind was gusty as I listened for the bell to begin, enter at 'A' proceed in working trot down the centre line. Then my mind went completely blank. Vacant. Lost. I had no idea what to do. I had completely forgotten my movements.
Mortified, I returned home, my head unable to throw the feeling away.
"Don't worry Mummy, you can try again and if you still don't get it right you can just try again!" commented the wise A.
So I feel we are in it together A and I, learning together and being tested together. Sometimes we get it right, most often we don't. And there is always cake.