This is it. Don’t get scared now.
I was going to write about sending H off to school as though it were an ending. In lots of ways, it is to me. Our longest, toughest (? maybe?) shift together is done. No more nappies, night feeds, rhyme times at the library. No more chopping grapes in half to better wheedle them into his mouth, or convincing him into the shopping trolley seat. No more making the universe he lives in, and bashing my brains out over getting it right. Did I only have him to myself for four years? It seems longer than that, and shorter. It seems like everything we’ve known so far is changing, because it is.
But as we sit over celebratory Happy Meals and chocolate milkshakes – because after all, you have a first ever day at school only once – it feels much more like a beginning.
Hello exercise books and HB pencils, magic E and book bags. Hello to PE on the apparatus, recorder lessons, and scarecrow tag in the playground.
Hello to libraries, and more books, more stories and more worlds to discover than you ever thought existed.
Hello to the Romans and the Tudors and the blasted Industrial Revolution.
Hello to beloved and crappy teachers, and beloved and crappy friends. To make ups and break ups. To being tested and passing, or failing, and learning things about yourself in the failure.
A beginning then, and a hopeful, thrilling one at that. I can’t keep him to myself when he has all this waiting in the wings.
The sun is out, Hen. September’s calling. You’ll feel that golden, autumnal pull towards change all your life, probably.
Go out there and get it.