The beloved and Adorable Child is going off to residential today. He did this last year. It's fine. He goes to his father's house every other weekend, he's just spent Saturday night at my brother's house having a great time with his lovely cousins and fab aunty and uncle and it's fine. People do this. People go to places and they come back.
And yet today, from nowhere, is the 'what if' feeling. Right now, I've been awake since about 3am, thinking, worrying, head and stomach churning, because what if he doesn't come back? The thing is, I know who he is going with, they teach at my school, I know all the children, I know their brothers and sisters and families. I know the teachers, the other adults, I know their favourite tv programmes and whether they have sandwiches or hot lunch or whatever, I know the coach firm - we're going with them ourselves on a trip in 18 days time. I know the evolve forms have been done, the risk assessments are complete, the activity leaders are qualified, the place itself is lovely. I know he had a fabulous time last year.
But here it is. My reality, is that people go off on ordinary things and they do not come back.
Being truly honest, my reality is that Rich left for work and did not come back and I saw him again to identify him.
I gave myself a good talking to about 4am, discussing how many places so many people have been to and returned safely. How I felt like this when J and the Adorable Child went to Manchester, to Cardiff, to Hampton Court Palace, and they came back just fine. How he had come back last year, just fine. How I go away to places and I come back fine. How we travel thousands of miles a year (literally) and we come back just fine.
I know that this is ridiculous. I know. I spent from 3am to 4 am recognising the feeling, allowing myself to feel, telling myself it was ok to feel this way. Then I felt indulgent, and spent from 4am to 5am telling myself to get a damn grip and get over myself. Then I got up.
Maybe I just need a cup of tea and a calm down quietly. God has this, I know. He has the AC right where He needs him to be. He has a plan. (Ok, so His plan for Rich sucked, but maybe the alternative was something horrible like cancer or something debilitating. Maybe the swift, painless death he had was the best of a bad choice. I don't know that one.....)
It's going to be a long week of me pretending that this feeling isn't there and that him being away is totally fine. I cannot, willnot smother him and make him a mummy's boy just because I fear losing him. That would be rubbish parenting.