Wednesday 18 October 2017
The World through the eyes of a 6 year old.
Meet Mini Me, my 6 year old niece. She was born after I left the UK. She knows no different, her Aunty Suzanne, lives in another country and has to catch get an aeroplane to come and visit her twice a year for a couple of weeks at a time. Aunty Suzanne turns up with gifts, does fun stuff like take her out for ice cream and makes sure that there are presents and cards left behind for birthdays, christmas, easter and halloween. In Between visits there are items sent through the post, pictures put up on facebook of where Aunty Suzanne is travelling and skype calls.
Mini Me has a map and a globe to see how far away Aunty Suzanne lives and where she is traveling, she has pictures of our home, our cat and dog
There is always great excitement when Aunty Suzanne is coming to visit, a list compiled of things for them to do and tears when Aunty Suzanne has to go home.
This year there was a complete and total breakdown from Mini Me, when I said my goodbyes. I'd been in the UK for a 3 month stint. I've bought a flat in town where I can stay when I visit and as far as Mini Me was concerned I now lived in the UK, the flat was my home and Uncle Peter was away working as he'd been over twice to visit during the 3 month period I was in the UK.
I was only leaving the UK for 3 weeks, I've returned to Dubai to declutter, organise a removal firm and find us a new house to live in, then I'll be back in the UK for 3 weeks to finish helping my mum move after my father's death this summer, before returning to Dubai to move house and resume my usual pattern of visiting family in the UK.
But in the eyes of Mini Me, 3 months had been 'forever' and she didn't want me to leave.
'But what about the flat? you've got a flat, who will live in it? You're supposed to live in it'
'Christmas, you'll be here for christmas like you always are?' I've not spent a christmas in the UK since 2010 'But you're always here for christmas'
'Who is going to pick me up from school?' I've only collected her 3 times since the new term, but each time we have gone for ice cream.
'My birthday, you always come for my birthday' that's not till February and again, I've never been there on her birthday.
Mini me is getting older, learning more, her understanding of the world is growing, yet she still has little concept of how far away Dubai is even when I equate it to the length of time it takes me to get home as being the same as a night time of sleep for her.
My physical presence in her life of gifts and photographs and this 3 month visit has become 'forever' for her and she just doesn't understand why I'd not be there anytime she wants to see me.
Three weeks is also forever for her until I come back, she's moved house this year, changed schools, her nanna is moving after her granddad died and now I'm leaving her and in the world of a 6 year old, that's just too much to process, although I also suspect that she's back in school this week without a care in the world, counting down the sleeps till Aunty Suzanne comes back again and takes her for another ice cream.