I'm going to preface this blog post by acknowledging just how lucky I am.
Lucky to still have both my parents.
Lucky to have had the most incredible relationship with them for the past 45 years.
Lucky that they are still the ones to look after me rather than the other way round.
Now that's been said, here's the thing.
I miss my mum and dad.
The last time I saw them was in late October 2019.
It's the longest I've ever gone without seeing them, and bloody hell it's been / it is hard.
I lived in Nice, France for 12 years and thanks to easyjet we were able to see each other every 2-3 months in general.
Then when I moved to London I was just an hour down the road from them.
We saw each other for about a day every month, more or less.
My mum and dad were our support team when I had our youngest daughter, Clémence, in London in 2012.
My dad drove me, whilst in full-on labour, to hospital, through the rush hour streets of London.
My mum stayed with me and Ben right through labour and delivery.
We lived with them for nearly 3 months in 2010 when we relocated to the UK from France.
5 years later when we decided to leave London and move to Mauritius we moved back in with them for 4 months, to have some really quality family time before living a 12 hour flight away.
When we started our new life in Mauritius in October 2015, my parents came along too, and stayed with us for our first month here, to help us find our feet.
We are very close.
You have to be to live in such close proximity to someone for such a long time.
Ben and my dad geek out together over computer stuff and golf, while my mum and I chat (and we can talk for England!).
I miss laughing at my dad's jokes. He has one of the best senses of humour of anyone I know. I even miss his being pedantic.
As for my mum I miss asking her advice on things - she always has THE best advice - chatting about anything and everything, politics, religion, the world, books, feminism, and anything else that pops into our heads.
I would love so much to see them again but I can't see it happening anytime soon.
For them to come to Mauritius they would need to a) take the risk of travelling and taking two flights as there are currently no direct flights to the UK and b) go into quarantine for 2 weeks upon arrival.
For me to go to the UK I would need to either fly via Paris or Dubai, both of which will probably mean me going into some kind of quarantine upon arrival in the UK.
I would need to quarantine again when back in Mauritius, and I would be so worried about picking Covid up on the trip back and giving it to them.
Instead I'm waiting.
Having long video calls with them.
And blogging about how much I miss them as it's cathartic.
Over the last few days I've been listening to a recording my maternal grandma made in 1987, talking about her life story.
She talked a lot about the war as a young bride, primary school teacher, and later mum to two young boys, with a husband away doing war work.
If she could handle 6 years of uncertainty and hardships as a young mum I can more than cope with video calls instead of real life meet-ups.
But I will put it out there - I miss my mum and dad, so if we can do something to speed up being able to travel again then I'm all for it!
(The photo is of my mum and dad in 2017 in Ferney Valley, on one of their trips to see us in Mauritius. Happy times.)