As many of you know, last week was a big week in my mothering journey. The Tall One went away for nine days, Bonus Boy had his first school visit prior to starting big school in September and I have run the gamut of emotions.
A big part of being a Mum is this series of little letting-gos as we prepare our children for life in the big wide world but it doesn’t get any easier on the heart-strings as their stride gets longer and they travel further, especially when the past creeps up and taps you on the shoulder.
The Tall One set off on his big adventure with barely a backwards glance. I had stuffed as much food as I could into his backpack along with clothes for all eventualities and he was off for a two centre watersports adventure holiday which would include white water rafting (gulp), gorge jumping (eek) and a canoe descent of the Ardeche River with an overnight bivouac on the river bank (eyes wide open, beating heart) alongside a long list of other dangerous but exciting activities over which I had no control.
So that was FEAR taken care of I would just have to TRUST him to be the sensible chap I had brought him up to be!
After he had left I busied myself filling the bookshelves Mr TS has just built in the sitting room.
Working my way through boxes I was SURPRISED to find the Michelin guide to campsites in France with a page marked. The page listed the campsite in Brittany where The Tall One was conceived, a coincidence which brought a smile to my face and JOY to my heart!
Bonus Boy’s school visit was preceded with much ANTICIPATION on both our parts and an awful lot of SADNESS on mine. He has been a treasure, a real bonus and a fantastic companion over the last four years; letting him go is one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.
I had to take a lot of forms with me to register him properly and give permission for various things so I decided my normal little bag wasn’t big enough and began emptying out a larger one I hadn’t used for a while. The SURPRISE this time was the handful of Murray Mints I used to suck to stem morning sickness when I was pregnant with him and the schedule for my pregnancy yoga classes! More coincidence, it was turning into quite a week!
Bonus Boy is very ready to go to school; he is sociable and clever and confident and we walked into the school hand in hand then I stood back and let him dive in while I bravely bought little jumpers, a book bag and a PE sack. I saved my tears until he was safely in bed!
More JOY came my way when The Tall One returned, grinning from ear to ear and allowing me to hug him a lot. Bonus Boy ran into his arms and all was well in our world!
According to Robert Plutchik’s Wheel Of Emotions I have covered six of the eight basic emotions. Leaving out only DISGUST and ANGER.
I rarely experience real ANGER, the jump up and scare you sort, the knock you flat on your back sort and I have never felt it for any of my kids. I’ve been cross plenty of times, frustrated often. I have ground my teeth, I have tried not to swear, I have gone for a good, long walk, I have shouted until I am blue in the face but red, spots before the eyes anger has only ever appeared with difficult adults.
I experienced DISGUST twice this week, once when I was emptying The Tall One’s rucksack of dirty clothes and peach goo from a piece of fruit left just a little too long in the bottom of a bag. The second time was when Bonus Boy informed me he had spiders in his tummy and I discovered two ticks with their heads buried in his tummy button (thank you to all my helpful twitter friends who guided me through that trauma!) If you are of a sensitive disposition do not look at the following photo!
Tick photo by Flickr user John Carelton
This post was written for Tara’s Gallery at Sticky Fingers and Josie’s Writing Workshop at Sleep Is For The Weak. They teamed up to offer a joint challenge this week so do pop over and have a look at some of the other entries!