My daughter, Arabella. Sitting in the window. Soft and sweet, young and free.
This was my room. We moved to this house when I was about 18. My older sister had left home, and my younger brother lived with us. I had attempted University in Blackpool, doing Music Theatre, but I missed home, and my heart belonged elsewhere, so I came back. And often found myself sitting in this window, staring out into the changeable skies, dreaming of who I would be, and who I would fall in love with.
And I also did a lot of growing by that window. As the seasons changed, so did I. My six year relationship ended with a boy I'd thought I'd loved. But what is teenage love? Is it just infatuation? And then realisation that it has to end, and you have to move on, not really knowing him anymore, and not knowing yourself either?
I remember feeling like my right arm had been cut off. I couldn't eat properly for weeks, and I felt like he would still be there. I collected all my things from his house. And cried. I went for walks and cried. And I sat in that window, and cried.
I cried about my infatuation for a boy through school. I cried about everything we'd shared. I cried about growing with him, then growing apart from him. I cried because my heart hurt. And I cried about being lost.
And here I am, 16 years on, watching my daughter sitting in that window. She has all this to come... the complexities of life and love. I hope I can help her. And I hope she will come through the heartbreak and the tears. Feeling happy and content, as I am now. And not lost at all.