Today’s The Day

20 Sep

A strange feeling of anxiety is upon me. The kind you get when something unusual, different and important is about to happen. A similar feeling to the one you get when you are about to enter an interview, or about to make a speech in front of lots of people. I feel kind of fuzzy, nervous, yet a bit excited.

Since our middle child was born, @Ruralsgt and I have spoken about ‘the day that our time becomes ours again’. When we decided that we wanted two more children, we knew that, in some ways, we were putting our lives on hold. I don’t mean that you don’t have a life with small children around, but that your time together becomes very limited.

For the last five years, we have talked about the day when the youngest starts pre-school. The day we can start to have the odd hour together, without interruption. When we can go for a coffee without the difficulties of children and actually have a full conversation together, in total peace. Today is that day.

Whilst we have been looking forward to claiming a little private time back, I have been dreading it too. I just love babies. I have always been the same. As a child I was drawn towards babies, as soon as I was old enough, I was babysitting. I helped in pre-schools and I just loved teaching and playing with small children. When our eldest was small, I worked in his pre-school and helped in his class at primary school. When the second one started pre-school I helped out lots and joined the committee, of which I am now the fundraising manager. So babies and small children have been a constant in my life and I have loved it.

Mr Rural has decided to get the food shopping done and leave me to some quality time with Mini Rural. We have turned the music up loud and we’re dancing round the house. I just love doing this with my family. Mini rural is getting stuck in and picking his favourite tunes.

A little earlier we read stories together; we packed his bag for pre-school and played some games. He has been so cute and happy. He even delighted us with one of those little ‘phrases’ that youngsters come out with. He announced that today was the day he started ‘police school’. Bless him.

Suddenly Mini Rural goes quieter. We have slower songs on now and he is stroking my hair, holding my hands and looking into my eyes. I have a real ‘moment’. He is always affectionate but I know something is different here. He is literally oozing love and affection for me. My eyes have filled with tears and a lump is in my throat. Mini Rural goes over to the sofa and simply says:

 “I don’t want to go without you, I want you to follow me”

This breaks my heart but I know I can’t allow him to get upset or see that I am sad. Not one bit of me wants these moments to end. I don’t want to lose the last of my toddlers and the innocence and unconditional love that he has. I know that I can’t stop it from happening, and I’m cherishing every moment and keeping it as a memory that, I hope, I can always draw upon. I take a deep breath, give him a cuddle, tell him it will be fine. Then I find a funny YouTube clip that I know he likes. I manage to turn it around and get us both giggling again, phew. I keep the momentum up for our last hour together, Mr R returns and we have lunch.

We’ve arrived at pre-school and we’re all smiling now. We know that Mini Rural has been excited, so we try and continue that feel. I’m very nervous but I know how to do this. I’ve done it twice before and learned what works and what doesn’t. I know that he will be fine; I know the teachers will look after him and I know that the very best thing for our son is for us to be happy and positive, take him in and leave as quickly as possible. My brave face goes on and in we go.

Mini Rural walks straight over and finds his name and picture, he copies the other children and puts it on a peg, I’m impressed! He spots a couple of the teachers that we know and is pleased to see their friendly faces. They call him through to the main room, he kisses us goodbye and is gone.

We stand in silence for a few moments. There’s a sudden blank feeling. We realise that we don’t have to put on a brave face anymore, this is it, our little boy has started pre-school. Mr R takes my hand; we glance at each other, smile reassuringly and slowly make our way back to the car. Mr R gives me a hug and we both know that we have to get on with things. We know everything will be just fine and that the strange feeling surrounding us will ease in time.

I have tonnes of work to catch up on. I really have to do it whilst Mini Rural is at pre-school, so I make a cup of tea and get on with it. Mr R decides to treat himself to a game on the Wii. We sit in silence and get on with our own things. We have never done this before. It’s strange and we both know it, yet we just take the time to make the most of this odd sensation. We could walk around lost, cry or just go out somewhere. However, I have always juggled my work around the children and it feels so good to be able to actually fully submerse myself into it. For the first time in two years, I actually felt like I’ve had a constructive working session.

The time is approaching to collect the younger boys from school. We pack up our things together and take 10 minutes for a calm and refreshing chat. We feel good, really good. The stress free feeling, of being able to do something without interruption, has left us both feeling happy and chilled out. This is going to be OK, we can do this.

Together we go and collect our second son. I have never done this without Mini coming too. It’s odd, yet lovely. Mr R & I hold hands and stroll along casually. We collect our son and are able to devote a little time and affection to him as we make our way to pre-school. This can only be a good thing for us all.

At pre-school the three of us wait excitedly and can’t wait to see his little smiley face come running out. That’s exactly what happens. He runs out with the biggest smile on his face, gives his brother a cuddle, and then us. I squeeze him rather a lot and eventually I manage to stop kissing his little chubby cheeks. We make our way back home, chatting about his big adventure, to see Rural Teen who is also waiting with his arms open and a big smile on his face. All three brothers, hug and run up to the house chatting and laughing about their day. Mr R & I just smile and watch, with a warm fuzzy feeling in our hearts.

What a day, a strange day, an emotional one and one that has reminded me just how lucky we are. My boys are my world, they are our world, I feel blessed.

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14 Responses to “Today’s The Day”

  1. Julia September 20, 2011 at 11:19 pm #

    Brought a tear to my eye.

  2. MinimumCover September 20, 2011 at 11:32 pm #

    Superb post Mrs R. I am about to throw my youngest into the big wide world of pre-school too. Its far more terrifying for the parents than the kids. Its just a bigger playground for them to absorb into their ever changing reality.

    I think, deep down, we all know that its not actually going to bother them at all and that probably upsets us as much, if not more than the separation that we eagerly try and pin our tears to.

    You enjoyed the time with a full time baby…don’t be afraid to allow yourself the opportunity to sit proudly back and watch the person you have helped create thrive as a result of your hard work.

    Good job mum!

  3. Dips September 21, 2011 at 7:00 am #

    Lovely x

  4. Young Mummy September 21, 2011 at 8:04 am #

    Wonderfully emotive post, fantastically written. I can definitely relate to feeling torn between the pride and excitement as they grow up and a sense of sadness. I hope mini rural continues to enjoy pre-school as much as his first day. Sounds like you did a great job preparing him for it.

  5. joeynoble September 21, 2011 at 12:05 pm #

    Mrs R that brought a tear to my eye!! Such a wonderfully written post, and I know that’s exactly how I’m going to feel in a years time. I hope mini rural continues to enjoy it, and u and Mr R enjoy your new found time together 🙂 x

  6. Diogenes September 21, 2011 at 12:28 pm #

    Just like every other couple with kids. Yawn

    • MrsRuralSgt September 21, 2011 at 12:37 pm #

      Thank you for taking the time to comment, even though you found it so boring! I wonder if you’re a parent..

    • James Vine (@JamesPSVine) September 21, 2011 at 12:50 pm #

      Sadly, not if you live in the real world, but as the classical greek founder of cynicism I suppose nobody could expect anything more positive than this nasty little snipe.

      There’s an awful lot of kids not lucky enough to have a “couple” as their parents to bring them up. These three look to be more fortunate than most, which is probably what irks you more than anything else.

    • Carl Ebrey (@seabrie) September 21, 2011 at 3:13 pm #

      Just like every other troll on the web. Yawn.

  7. localcop1404 September 21, 2011 at 12:42 pm #

    Diogenes, if you didn’t like this and found it so dull why did you read through and then take the time to comment?

    Like a broken pencil, pointless!

    Mrs R. Another great blog, keep it up 😉

  8. Em (@Yellowlass) September 21, 2011 at 12:44 pm #

    Awww brought a tear to my eye too, they grow up so fast we nurture them & then take pleasure and sit back and watch them grow into little people, we as parents give them the building blocks they need, sometimes like you say we have to put lots of brave faces on, equally, I think they do too! xxx

  9. Thecustodysgt September 21, 2011 at 3:02 pm #

    Wonderful

  10. @alphatreblesix September 21, 2011 at 9:41 pm #

    That’s lovely, never having been lucky enough to have mini alphas, thanks for sharing this with me 🙂

  11. @peelerswife September 25, 2011 at 8:08 am #

    I think the blog is lovely and every parent appreciates how you both felt. Keep writing!!!!

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