In The Blink of an Eye – for Patrick

This week Facebook sent me a memory from last year. Quite timely, as we have started the process of getting the old house ready to sell, to downsize for the next part of our lives..

The son in question is on the final run to finish his degree and will leave home in January. The first of the Gang of 3, I am having twinges of empty nest, but we are both so keen for the next phase, of both our lives, that those pangs are fleeting.

He’s had some challenges over the years, and my pride in his accomplishments is boundless..

So, dedicated to all of my kids, but especially to the second born, is this…   

”Spent some of the wknd helping No2 son sort out his room, there was some chucking out, some passing on, and some recycling…. some sifting through things from his childhood…

It caused me to reflect on the last 20+ years and parenting…

the hook in his ceiling a baby mobile hung from..

the glow in the dark stars I stuck on my toddler’s ceiling..

the last few dinky cars left from a vast collection….

the box of artwork and school bits and pieces from preschool to college…

the souvenirs from holidays…

the bits of costumes from school events…

    the nostalgic flotsam and jetsam from birth to adulthood…

I recalled those seemingly endless nights spent trying to settle a fractious toddler,  how he didn’t want to be on my lap, rocking in the chair, but liked to have me pat his back til he settled…

the nights, he was sick, and I slept in his room…

the sneaking in to retrieve the tooth, and pay the tooth fairy fee…

the night he threw up noodles 🤢…

the seemingly endless times we rearranged his furniture… the friends who slept over…

the battles we had over bedtimes, homework, chores, language,  boundaries…

the laughs, the music, the shared interests…

the mutual pride in hung certificates….

How it has been HIS entire life, but just a seemingly “Flash of time” in mine….

This parenting thing?

This life arrives into your care and you blunder through, fingers permanently crossed, hoping you’re not fucking up. Hoping that that angry toddler screaming will  not be resentful for life. That it is just a virus and not something life threatening.  That their sadness and disappointment over some childhood disaster will be short lived..

that you’ve taught them enough,

that you’ve done… enough…

that you picked the important battles and survived the inconsequential…

that they will recall fondly, some of the memories you tried to create for them

I have another year of having this awesome young man under my roof, before he qualifies and finishes spreading his wings… and yet, I’m still hoping I’ve done enough…

Wherever you are on the parenting timeline- new-born, toddler, new entrant, college or beyond… good luck,  have faith… and hug them tight… they are our most precious…

Bon nuit,  Mes Amis xxx”

And here I am,,, Mum of 3 adults, and 1 about to fly the coop..

I know, that some of you, like me, are on the cusp of “The next phase”, give yourselves a pat on the back. We have grown some awesome Human Beings…

thanks

C

4 thoughts on “In The Blink of an Eye – for Patrick

  1. I have such a lump in my throat, reading ab out this transitional time. I am catapulted back to the night I stormed out of home, determined to adult on my own (and three nights later, that cataclysm that would define the rest of my life that happened). I see the morning I hurriedly packed a small suite case for 2 weeks in London, that turned into 30 months. Packing my car in Pretoria to move to Cape Town. Leaving Johannesburg to move to Gaborone. Leaving Cape Town for Dubai. All the bits in between. The leaving and the coming home. The revelations that although you can come back to a physical space, you can’t go back home to feeling safe, nurtured, protected. That the only way forward is to spread your wings and fly. Much love for the next part of your adventure.

    Like

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