The firstborn started secondary school today. How the hell did that happen?
I remember when he started primary school it threw me totally (it’s all about me, you do know that, don’t you?). All of a sudden I was a mother of a school-aged child, not just a mother of babies who spent her days pushing the pram to the local shops, the kinder, the maternal-child health centre and to Mothers’ Group (the latter being my lifeline in those days). I became one of those Mothers At The School Gate. A real grown up. For some reason it hit me harder than just being a mother. A Mother At The School Gate was not how I envisaged myself.
I wanted to hang on to the nappies snapping in the wind on the clothesline, the smell of a baby’s head as I breastfed late at night, the tiny singlets and cardigans, the innocent trusting eyes.
For the past few years now I’ve had all three of my boys at primary school and so it gradually became the norm. But now I’m a parent of a high school kid. And in a couple of weeks, the Mother of a Teenager.
He is growing up so fast. And as much as I get nostalgic for the baby daze, and struggle with the realities of the burgeoning independence he shows, I am so very very proud of him. He is becoming a fine young man who is sensitive towards others, curious about the world around him, creative, enthusiastic about learning, and full to bursting with ideas and promise.
My Number One Son.