I was picking up my daughter’s Prader-Willi Syndrome Best Friend Forever (PWSBFF) for the now traditional school holiday sleepover. We were staying for lunch before bringing both the girls back to ours for the night.
Me and PWSBFF’s mum share a lot of experiences. We swap the kind of tales that always end in: “Yes! That’s exactly what I have to do!” My favourite exchange during the latest handover was when I mentioned my girl having a scab on her chin from where she’d picked a spot. (Skin-picking can be an issue with many PWS children).
“Yep, I walked into her room, and there was blood all over the pillow,” I told my doppleganger friend. Recognition flashed in her eyes. “Oh God, yes,” she replied, “I usually take a deep breath before I open the bedroom door, and wonder what carnage awaits.”* [*Yes, I made a T-shirt out of that (see picture). What of it?].
From behind us, there was a sound. It was the little rip of yoghurt pots being opened. Our daughters were either side of the kitchen table, unpeeling their puddings in perfect unison. Like mirror images of eachother, the teenagers methodically licked every micro-millimetre of yoghurt from the foil-backed lids, like an Activia-sponsored synchronised eating team.
Later that evening, the girls were opposite me in Pizza Express, working their way through their salad-filled pizzas. We’d ordered like Sally from 'When Harry Met Sally' (no, not that bit, you perv, the bits where she’s fussy about food). “She’ll have the leggera pollo ad astra with extra peppadew peppers, and she’ll have the same, only can you add some jalapeño peppers to hers, and can we not have any dressing on the salad, and then a leggera lemon sorbet for dessert, only served in two bowls, with one scoop in each...”
The waiter didn’t blink. I did, when I saw the price after realising I’d forgotten my discount vouchers.
Still, if I’m honest, I’d probably pay double to watch them lovingly consume their extra-peppery, less-than-500-calorie feasts. They did that mirror-image thing again, chewing in unison, ecstatically, unabashedly happy.
I think I may have mirrored them, too.
Song is Cate Le Bon - Mirror Me