It’s Sunday. Insert stream of consciousness here. This blog plot exists because I thought ‘I’ll just start writing and see where my thoughts take me’. It’s quite telling, actually, and lets you know what’s truly on my mind at the moment.
Well, it’s Monday tomorrow.
Every Monday, the same question gets asked in the office. What did you do at the weekend? Almost invariably, my answer is the same.
I mean, it’s not strictly true. Yesterday, for example, I got up, washed up, tidied the kitchen a bit, read for a while, did some computer stuff, generally mooched and had a great afternoon with my guild leader running around Hoth getting my first tauntaun mount. Which was enormous fun and is more sociable than you might think given that we were on Skype the whole time.
Today is another day of nothing. But again, that’s not true. This morning, I wrote another 2,000 words of Project: Carpark. I’ve washed up, I’ve swept up all the bits of rogue cat litter that Yuna decided needed ditching out of the tray and I’ve just sat down here with a cup of tea to write my blog. When I’ve done that, I might play Spellforce for a little while.
Why have I done nothing? Because Himself works weekends. He works in retail. It’s inevitable. I don’t have a circle of friends up here, so I can’t ‘pop out’ and see someone without making plans in advance and it involving driving a reasonable distance. There’s only so many times you can look around the same shops (and I’m also the world’s worst shopper), so I don’t go into town every weekend.
Basically, I’m boring. I am a little hermit crab of sullenness, tucked quietly away in my corner. But you know what? It suits me most of the time. Yeah, occasionally I go through the whole ‘OH GOD I’M SO LONELY’ phase, but it passes.
Have a couple of weeks off work coming up and Himself is off too. It’ll be weird spending Actual Time with him. I’m not entirely sure what we’ll talk about and we’ve been together for eleven years. Wait… eleven? Or twelve? I DON’T EVEN KNOW ANY MORE. I lose track of things when they reach double figures.
Either way, our wedding anniversary (sixth – I know THAT much) is on September 8th. Hard to believe that six years have gone by. I was looking at a couple of our wedding pictures the other day and being amused that the Son was barely up to Himself’s chest at the time. Now he’s catching up fast. Looking up to talk to your child after thirteen years of looking in a downwards direction was the weirdest experience of my life.
He starts his GCSEs when he goes back to school. That by itself fills me with great anxiety. Over the next two years of his life, his academic future is going to be determined based on the results of a few examinations. Will he do OK? Will he go on to study A levels and go to University? I don’t know. I really don’t. He has expressed a desire to become an engineer – with a professed interest in robotics and bionics. Will he keep that interest? I don’t know either. Over the years, he’s wanted to ‘grow up to be’ a variety of things from a potter, to an actor, to a man who creates bionic limbs.
For the record, I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. When I was five and was asked that question in my first days of school, I remember answering that I wanted to be ‘an adult’. It made people laugh. I was serious. I still haven’t achieved that goal, though.
From the moment the Son was born, worries arrived. When he was born, eight weeks premature, the worry was a physical and very tangible thing. ‘Is he still breathing? Is he alright?’ Note: poking a sleeping baby to test that it’s definitely just sleeping seems like a bizarre thing, but when they start screaming at you in disgust, it’s the best sound ever.
I went back to work full time and left him in nursery. I cried buckets that day. I never wanted to leave him, but I had no financial choice. Work it was. I spent the whole day in misery, rushed to collect him and discovered that he’d had a grand day. It reached a phase where if I was told ‘he missed you today’, I felt smug.
He started school. A whole new swathe of worries. Will he get bullied? Will he behave in class? Well, yes. As it happened, both of these things occurred. The behaviour thing is awesome; the Son constantly gets comments about his good manners and his grown-up attitude. The bullying thing is also oddly awesome. Let me explain.
I was bullied at school and I think it gave me an irrational fear of the same thing happening to him. He went in loaded with the opportunities to be picked on. He’s a glasses-wearing redhead who happens to prefer the Indoors to the Outdoors. I worried about how he was being treated at school right up until the day he was doing his cycling proficiency.
Himself regaled the story. They were walking back down from the school. The Son was pushing his bike and still wearing his bike helmet. Note: at the time, he was about eight or nine. The helmet was a Power Rangers one, I think. You know. Like little kids have.
They passed the corner shop and there was a little gang of three kids sat there, one of whom was a known quantity – one of the nastier kids in the school. He led a little snarky call of ‘nice bike helmet,’ which resulted in sneering derision. I asked the Husband how the Son took it.
‘It was great,’ says Himself. ‘The Son smiled nicely, turned around, fixed this kid with a completely neutral expression and said at least I’m not so fat I can’t ride a bike‘ and carried on walking. The bully’s friends turned their derisive laughter onto him instead and by all accounts, this kid never, ever bothered the Son again.
I stopped worrying about that then. But that’s OK, because not long after came secondary school and adolescence and a whole bunch of new worries, which still persist. Right now though, the big one is finding myself fearing for his future. Will he be able to get a job? Will he have financial stability? Will he be happy?
That last one is the big one. I live for my son, absolutely and categorically. He is fifteen in February and rapidly reaching that point where I will have to let go of the baby reins as it were. Between me, the Husband, the Ex and his wife, we have done all we can to produce a fully fledged individual, capable of taking that step off the roof of our protection and let his wings help him soar as high as he dares go. I have faith in his common sense and intelligence. But it doesn’t mean I’m not scared. What I do know is that the minute he steps off that building, all of us will be on the express elevator to the bottom to deploy the net. Just in case, you understand.
All that I should REALLY be worrying about of course is that his plans to become a bionics/robotics engineer don’t result in some sort of Mad Scientist state of affairs.