It’s a cold, grey autumnal day, not typical of autumn but one of a type. There’s a sharp breeze that shreds the yellowing leaves from the trees and penetrates to the bone. It is a day for staying indoors. The light is dim outside; it darkens early partly due to the time of year and partly because of the thick cloud that hunkers down close to the earth, creating a depressing feel. In my house it is warm. I wrap myself in a thick cardigan and think about making large mugs of steaming chocolate and think about how that makes me sounds like a character from an Enid Blyton book. The sound of the tumble dryer spills from the utility room and if I look up, out through the window, I can see the soft white bodies of the bunnies huddled together against the cold, and I wish I could bring them indoors without the experience terrifying them but I can’t. I can, however, place an extra layer of straw in their little bed-chamber, making a cosy warm hole for them even though its outside. I want candles and soft throws, chocolate (how unlike me) and warm tea, a book about something cosy. I want to huddle up against the dark with my family, enclosed in soft light like that from a fire or from candles. I want it to be colder. I want them to want to come to me: their warm, comfortable Mum.

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