I have lived in my house for over 60 years, I was born here.

We have decided that it is time for a move, for a variety of reasons, it has been a really hard decision and I still feel sad when I draw back the curtains and see the for sale sign in the garden.

The memories I have are many, some good, some not so good as in all families it wasn’t always plain sailing, but it was and still is my family house. My brother and myself grew up here, our friends spent hours here, we had a carefree childhood, and did all the stuff children should do. We played in the garden, we went to the local school and we grew into adults and independent people.

I will be eternally grateful to my parents for giving me the sound foundation to enable me to become the person I am today.

So when I look to what the future may hold, it is with some fear and trepidation, is it the right thing to do, to move away from all that is so safe and familiar?

I know no-one can answer that question except me.

How do you know?

Of course it could be that it is absolutely the right thing to do, a new challenge, a fresh start.

It is one of those times when I am not practising what I preach.

I tell people all the time to stop looking back and look forward, and I do believe that to be true, but sometimes we have to look back to enable us to move forward.

This house, is me, it is part of who I am.

I was married from here, my children were born here and I looked after my amazing Mum for years here in her latter years.

Someone said to me yesterday,”I expect you feel as though you are leaving your Mum there?” Maybe they are right.

Spending most of our time keeping the house clean and tidy, is tedious to say the least, and knowing strangers are looking around criticising our home is hard.

In every room I go in there are memories.

In our back bedroom I can still see our granddaughter, cuddled up and safe in her bed, those wonderful times when we were still part of her life, the top of the stairs I can see her sitting, when she was refusing to go to sleep. I can see her little head popping around our bedroom door, bleary eyed with tousled hair, saying, “Is it morning, Gran?”

Mmm, and many more besides.

So as there are going to be changes in our lives, we will still carry on giving support to grandparents who are also facing changes, of facing separation from a loved one. It doesn’t matter where we are that will never change.

Bristol Grandparents Support Group may well be based somewhere else, but the people will never change.

Must just go and check the bathroom!

Jane