The letter attached to a new pair of earrings, sent to my house after a hard week – ‘I thought you might like these. Keep your chin up, my girl.’
The text message sent mid-Coronation Street to say ‘Nice jumper, Gail – NOT!’, to which I respond with whole-hearted agreement.
The note slipped between the ice block she attached to my sandwich when I was at school – because heaven forbid it should drop below fridge temperature – to wish me GOOD LUCK on exam days.
The ‘Happy New Home’ card that was waiting for us behind the door of our otherwise empty first house, sent the minute I let her know the address.
The abbreviations she makes up to save space in her text messages: TC = take care, AML = all my love. If she’s going to pay as she goes, she’s going to get her money’s worth.
The note sent with the jiffy bag full of M&S knickers she found for me in the sale that says ‘Bargains or what!’ and ‘The size 12 pair might be too big but for 19p, who cares?’ – all of which made my day.
The ‘Bon Voyage’ card she sent before we went to Australia, and the messages I received at just the right time every day we were there to say good morning, good night, and please, please be careful.
The entire emails she writes in the space reserved for the subject heading – because if you’ve got something to say, why not just get on with it?
The joke ‘list’ of names she’s claimed to have kept all my life of all the people who have ever dared upset me.
The texts I get whenever I mention I’ve bought myself something new to wear – ‘Did you not get your mother one?!’ she says, regardless of what it is.
The iPad messages to tell me when things I might be interested in are on TV: ‘Wimbledon on Location Location Location!’ ‘Great Barrier Reef on BBC1!’ ‘Remember Coronation Street’s on at 7 tonight because of stupid football!’
The words engraved on the silver bracelet she gave me on my wedding day: ‘Love always, mum’, which I will love always, mum.
The letters from my mother that mean more than she will ever know.