My mum gave me my poppy on the day that the school where I teach held a surprise assembly for me to celebrate the fact I had been selected from 21,000 writers for publication in the book, ‘Letter to an Unknown Soldier’ – a project where members of the public were invited to write the letter that this statue of a soldier is holding in his hands. I had been inspired to write after hearing about the project on the radio.
Our Headteacher somehow smuggled my whole family into his office from miles away ready to surprise me in front of 600 children! I can’t even begin to explain how surreal it was to see everyone including my grandad, my husband and my youngest nephew in the school hall on a grey Monday morning! To receive my poppy afterwards was incredibly poignant.
I consider it a huge honour to own one of these poppies and just as my ‘letter’ was dedicated my grandparents and my young son, this poppy, too, is for them and their infinite indent on the world.