Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Leaving home

I told my daughter nearly two weeks ago that she was going to visit Grannie.

"Today or tomorrow?" she asked.

"Well, neither: in the Easter holidays, when school has finished."

She tries to digest this. "So after school then."

This style of questioning has happened nearly every day since. "We go to Grannie's tomorrow?"

"No, love, in the holidays."

At long last the big day came: "Yes: we're going to see Grannie tomorrow."

She's very organised, my little one. Everything has an order and that is rigidly set in her mind. 

"So we need to pack?"

"Yes, we'll do it after dinner."

After dinner, she was straight upstairs and into her pyjamas. Clothes were pulled out to go in the suitcase, dolly was dragged from the bed, books were collated and (most importantly to her) 'Mamma Mia' was in the pink 'puter (portable DVD player to you and me) for the train journey. In bed, asleep, early.

And up early. And delight on face as we catch the bus, then the train. Anxiety as her bag kept falling down when the little wheels got caught between the pavement slabs. Joy, as Mamma Mia plays repeatedly (pity the poor gentleman trying to work at the other seat on our table). And then, seeing Grannie at the platform, my daughter runs to greet her with a big hug and walks hand-in-hand to the car.

"Bye mum!" she calls. (Although she is later forced into giving her mother a kiss as well.)

My son gives me more hugs, but is also pleased to be spending a week with grandparents.

So, I ask myself, am I doing everything completely right, or completely wrong, that they leave me so easily?


Laura - Are We Nearly There Yet Mummy? said...

When the 4 year old started pre-school I had to peel her off my legs and listen to her wail as I left, with the 3 year old he was off, so cool and laid back.

He wouldn't bother to kiss me at the childminders unless I remind him.

I can't work out whether it was good or bad either!

Nathalie said...

You are doing everything right - they are self assured and confident, just like you want them to be. New and different should be exciting!

Maternal Tales said...

You are definitely doing everything right. My two children react in different ways to almost every situation and I raise them in exactly the same way. So what I have to remind myself is that however I raise them their little characters show through regardless. And of course if they're ever naughty it has nothing to do with me - they're just being themselves!!

Catharine Withenay said...

Laura: Neither of mine ever looked back. The comment from my son's first nursery was that he was the first child they'd had that had never cried!

Nathalie: Self-assured and confident - just like their mother (ha!) Repeat to self until I believe it: You are doing everything right...

MT: Interesting - I usually blame 'naughty' on my husband's genes, not mine!

cheshire wife said...

I am sure that Grannie will soon tell you if you are doing it wrong.

Perfectly Happy Mum said...

I have to agree with Nathalie and MT, you are doing everything right! The fact that they can leave you so easily is because they are confident that you are here for them and that you will come back.

Catharine Withenay said...

CW: Thank you - I am sure you are right! She keeps being happy to look after them, so I guess it can't be too awful. (Or maybe she just feels someone needs to take them in hand...?!)

PHM: My daughter came running back to me, screaming, "Mummy!" and gave me a hug that nearly knocked me over. Something is right!

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