Every parent/grandparent spends many an hour thinking of how things might be if that day comes when they are reunited with their children/grandchildren.

Will it be one of those wonderful pictures when you see someone coming through the mist with their arms outstretched?

The truth is, probably not.

The children who have possibly spent many years being apart from a parent/grandparent, will have so many layers to work through in their own heads.

Maybe they have been told awful stories about us all, told that we stopped loving them and that we didn’t want anything to do with them. We have no way of knowing.

If we have been fortunate enough to have had a relationship with them in their early life, those memories are still there, they are just packed away for the time being.

We will be able to help them unpack, but item by item at their pace.

Many questions will be in their heads, it is important to tread very carefully.

As I always say, none of this is about us, it is the children we must always focus on.

They could well be damaged deeply and feel as though they have been betrayed by the adults in their lives.

We must keep our hearts and minds open.

Understand that we have to be patient, give the children all the time they need to come to terms with what has happened.

They need to know that they can trust you.

If it has been many years since you last had any contact, this new relationship will not be the same as it was, but it will be a brand new relationship.

As with any relationship it takes work, sensitivity and compassion.

Let the children/grandchildren know you love them.

Jane