I’ve been feeling a bit anxious of late. A bit nervous, like I’m hungover when I’m not.
I couldn’t work out why.
Life’s busy, but when isn’t it?
And then it dawned on me.
I only have one more Friday off with Nancy and then she goes to school.
One more morning when we can all wake up late and ming about in our pyjamas. When we can watch Milkshake until the Wright Stuff comes on, when it starts to feel a tad like we’re all unemployed.
One more Friday when Nancy bowls in shouting, ‘IT’S MUMMY, NANCY AND THOMAS’S DAY. THAT MEANS COCO POPS.’
I have one more Friday of painting her nails, of helping her draw giraffes (surprisingly more difficult than you’d imagine,) of making dens out of towels and cardboard boxes.
Of the three of us being a team.
Because the following week she will start school.
She will have to be there at 8.55am.
She will have to be up and dressed, teeth brushed, matching socks*, ready to start a day I will know nothing about.
She will have her own life, independent of me.
And I worry; will she stop talking to me?
Will she still let me carry her like a monkey when she’s upset?
Will she still tell me I’m her best mate?
And if yes, for how long?
I want her to grow up to be happy, with a rich tapestry of experience.
But does it have to start next week?
She tried her school uniform on, and looked a confusingly emotional juxtaposition of more grown up, and very little, at the same time.
I know she’ll have a brill time, that she’ll make some fantastic friends.
Some of my bestest friends are those I met thirty odd years ago at Primary School.
I just want her to know I’m here for her, that she can tell me anything, that her world will change but I won’t.
That she’s my girl.
And whatever else feels uncertain and unknown, that will never change.
*I will also have to get dressed in the morning as I can’t be that mum who drops her kids off in her pyjamas with red wine lips. Well not for the first term at least.