It happens every week. Kids go away on school trips. They have fun, they learn a lot, they come home safely, full of all they've seen and done.
But this is my kid, and he's gone away with school for 2 nights this week.
He's got a major chronic health condition, he has some sort of behavioural issue on the ADHD / autism spectrum that make him very hard work especially when in a new situation, when he is excited or nervous, or when he's away from parents. He is adopted, with all the subconscious insecurities that brings.
He was excited, he was admitting that he was nervous, he was counting down the hours. He couldn't wait.
And me? I'm petrified.
I wanted him to go. I didn't want him to go. The teachers reassured me that all the parents are scared. They have had a big meeting with me about Pips special medical needs; they are confident. I trust them (mostly!) He has to be allowed to go, to be normal.
I am going to be a jibbering wreck for three days. Pup is going to have a fantastic time.
Tigs? I'm not sure, he worries me. He is great company when Pups destabilising influence is out of the house, when he does not have to compete for attention. But he will miss Pup dreadfully. They are so close. OK, one minute they are screaming at each other, shoving, slapping etc, but the next minute I may hear Tigs say to Pup "I love you to the moon and back." and the reply "I love you to Pluto and back." With lots of cuddles and play wrestling. At the weekend because Pup was nervous, he was on a knife edge and exploded at the drop of a hat. A tiny secret part of me, the part that is exhausted from handling boy traumas, is saying 'Phew, peace for a couple of days!'
Last minute nerves caught up this morning. Pup was saying "I don't want to go, I'll miss you too much!" Tigs was saying "I don't want to go to school, I'm too poorly!" He has suddenly developed a probably fatal case of man flu that I think is partly his way of coping with the situation and clawing back a bit of the attention. BUT I coaxed and cajoled them into getting ready, the school run and handover of medication etc went smoothly, Pup ran off happily with his class. However I was not the only worried Mummy, I saw several leaving the school in tears. The house feels unusually empty today.