When I first became a mum I thought I needed more sleep, more time and more money. What I actually needed though was more friends: real friends who would support me, encourage me and be there when things were hard. 

There are so many people in life who are quick to judge. When I had twins I was so grateful for the friends who came to see the children and not the house. Who never commented when my kitchen was full of unwashed dishes and my laundry was spilling all over the basket because I never seemed to find time to put clothes away or iron. 

I was grateful for the friends who would find the hoover and use it without needing to be asked. I was grateful for the friends who would wind a baby even if the child projectile vomited all over them.  

That was what I needed more than anything.  

Thank you so much to the friends who were there when I was sleep deprived, had not showered in days and who had to have coffee without milk because I could not get to the shops. 

There were so many blaming me when my children failed to reach milestones on time. It is incredible how fast people can disappear out of your life when it starts to appear your children are struggling. Thank you to the friends who let me cry those tears and understood my sorrow when my children failed their two year assessment. Thank you to the ones who would send a text saying 'thinking about you' or who would message me on Facebook. Your kindness will never be forgotten. 

When my first child was assessed for autism, people paid lip service on social media, but very few genuinely helped. Thank you to the friends who let me rant, allowed me to mourn, and put the kettle on to make me tea. Thank you to the friends who would say 'hi' at the nursery gate even though my son was going into the baby room while their child of the same age was in the pre-school room. Thank you for not commenting that he was still in a buggy because he still could not walk. 

The day my son started school and my Facebook feed was full of his peers in the classrooms with their friends while I had to wave goodbye to my child in a taxi who was still in nappies and not able to speak. Thank you to the friends who understood why I found it hard to comment or like their pictures because my heart was breaking. Thank you to everyone who allowed me to talk when I needed to.

Thank you to those who have shared milestones and rejoiced with me. Like the time my son first said 'mum' at six and a half and the time after 368 days of only ever wearing his school jumper everyday he finally allowed me to put a blue t-shirt on him! Thank you for understanding how important these things are to me even if they would be minor for your child. 

Thank you for reading my posts and my blogs. Thank you for sharing my awareness pics and videos and celebrating when the MRI showed for the first time that his brain tumour was stable. 

Thank you for forgiving me when I was late with your birthday card or I forgot to send you best wishes the day you started your new job. I know I have not always been the friend I should because my life is so hectic and my days so long. 

It is friends like you who have kept me sane, made me smile and allowed me to cry. It is friends like you who have cooked me a meal when I have been rushing from one appointment to another. It is friends like you who have made time for me when your own life is already very full. Thank you. 

If there is anything I could give to every parent who has a disabled child it would be friends like you. 

You have shown me how important friendship is and the meaning of love. 

Thank you to all of my friends. 

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