Lad spent the morning irritably pacing the kitchen; shouting at the weans; fretting about ‘what he was going to do with his life’ (welcome to the real world my son!); and peering up the row for the tell-tale red postie van.
Postie finally arrived at midday.
And then Lad stood in the kitchen, carefully holding the envelope in his hand, as though he could tell the contents simply by weighing it. We were all watching silently: lad’s girl; middle child; smallest boy; baby (she’s 7 but calls herself baby) and me… There was a fumbling with paper; ripping; tearing and then he looked up to say ‘I’m too scared to look’ – before looking and digesting and whooping with happiness.
The lad done good.
Despite the drinking (he’s been carted home a few times this year…oh groan); the partying; Ibiza and all-night clubbing; the music festivals; and all those other things which parents sensibly spend their waking hours pontificating against…despite it all, he managed to pull off 5 very good passes.
Passes which far exceed my own weak efforts all those years ago (but I’m not about to tell him that)…efforts which followed my studious avoidance of all fun for at least 2 years.
I am clearly at that wonderful age when I start to learn from my adult children how I should be living (how I should have lived). So, I am resolved not to spend a second more than I need to doing things I don’t much like… and doing a lot more of the things which I do very much like…