Sunday, February 1, 2015

Mum, you can leave now...

We have just been through a big decision on behalf of one of our children. We have had our kids at a private school and have been really pleased with it. Small classes and many teachers in addition to good values. But for our youngest girl, the road to school became too long. 

My experience both as a mum and as a teacher, is that firstgraders enjoy learning and they look forward to school every day. But for our first grader, the road to school has been a huge challenge and she dreaded going to school. We therefore decided to try the school nearby where we live. It was success from day 1. 

The second day she tries out the day care facilities for schoolchildren. There are few kids there when we arrive this early morning. But one of the girls she will be starting school with, waves at her. As she approaches us, my daughter tells me:
- Mum, you can leave now...
Then she stretches out her arms and wants a proper hug and a kiss before I leave. - Bye, Mum!

It hurts a little. Just leaving. My wee one is in a new element with few people she knows, but she feels strong enough to let me go. But I think she can see the doubt in my eyes, because she adds: - Mum, you have to get to work on time, you know. 
A little reluctantly I start walking away into the blue morning as the snowflakes fall silently to the ground. Her words keep repeating in my mind:

- Mum, you can leave now...

And I think about the bigger picture. How my eldest children are on the threshold of their own lives and symbolically will say the same words: - Mum, you can leave now.

It will be a painful secession for me as a mum. All you want is to watch over your children and look out for them. But there comes a time when you have to let go and leave them to tread their own road.

I am not ready to let go yet. But I know that the time is closing in faster than I can fathom. I am so blessed to have five wonderful children that I love tremendously. But little by little they will have their own families and cooking for 7 will become cooking for 2. The laundry baskets will be emptier and the mess will be just about gone. Less straining, but oh so empty. 

Still the house is full of laughter and challenges and mess, but i understand that I should just love it all as long as it lasts. Because I am not ready to hear those words yet. 

- Mum, you can leave now...

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