Farewell to the baby
The night before the big day has arrived.
It’s time for me to finally say goodbye to to my last baby, and to be supremely thankful that I am watching him change into a young adult. It’s time for me to stop asking where the baby is; It’s time for me to stop holding his hand in the street; it’s time for me to stop giving him exuberant kisses on our separations and on our reconciliations.
It’s time for me to let go, just a little bit.
It’s been time for a long time actually. Oliver’s first day at secondary school seems like such a small thing in the great scheme of things, but it feels like something final for me.
Oliver has been patient with me, although I think part of him relishes the role which he plays; the role of the baby of the family. We all have our roles here and for the most part they help us to be a successful unit.
Tom plays the role of Older Brother, Getter of Tea and Squash for me, Player Of Guitar and Fetcher Of Bread from the local shop. Clever Tom with his quick wit and his Climbing of Stepladders and Loft Putter Upper.
I play the role of Mother, Purchaser of Shoes and Games, Have A Bath Nagger and Kisser Of Forehead (and Horrible Shouting Harridan Of Fear)
Oliver plays the role of Dreamy Youngest Child, Sweet Giver of Unnecessary Hugs, Gentle Storyteller and Infuriating Mess Leaver.
And although these roles might seem rigid, we easily interchange. Sometimes Oliver will be the one offering to run me a bath. Sometimes I will be the Climber of Stepladders (all the while breathing heavily and complaining about vertigo, while being two steps up), Sometimes Tom will be the one offering me a hug with no explanation.
Tomorrow we will take another small shift in our dynamics. Oliver will move from primary to secondary and we will adjust, as we do to every new change.
Change is never easy though, and so I mourn my role as Mother, Kisser of Foreheads.
I wonder how will I cope with being Mother, Teenage Wrangler.
Ah well, life passes like the tantrum of a 2 year old, and this small grief will pass (I taught him how to tie a tie today. DAMN IT).