What came first, the chicken or the egg?
What came first, the kids or my insanity!
It’s over. I did it one month ago. I whispered a little prayer, inhaled deeply, raced up the stairs and triumphantly burst through the door.
Phew! That wasn’t so bad was it? After all, almost every mother, past her prime, has had to face it at some point.
The chicks have flown, the nest is empty, or at least it’s been vacated by the offspring. Who would believe that so much junk, oops, sorry, possessions could fit into one small nest!
I’ve been at this for 35 years now. My chicks were rather older than most. More like old broilers!
The eldest took flight 10 years ago aged 25 and the youngest toppled out 4 weeks ago aged 31years 2 days and 1 hour.
Life has never been dull!
Fraught, manic, exhausting? Always! Peaceful, serene, calm? Never!
Ok, so who wants to be a normal family anyway! My two chicks have a small portion of Learning Disability, and heaps of OCD! Do you get the picture?
And they collect things. Anything can become an obsession. On a hazardous journey through the nest to throw open the window, I tripped over a perfectly symmetrical line of pristine empty cologne bottles and sprawled eye to eye with a dead jacket potato buried beneath crusty baked beans.
Logic? Don’t ask!
The sweet fragrance of fresh air almost knocked me out. That window had never realised its full potential in life. No one explained that its function was to let in light and oxygen. Youngest son had a thing about flies alighting on dog pooh!
Carefully tip toeing my route back to the safe zone; I surveyed the scene before me, well actually behind me and to the sides also.
How did this happen? Should I laugh or cry? It’s hilarious. Think I’ll laugh.
Changed my mind. My babes are gone. Think I’ll cry.
I settled for the latter and bawled ‘til I ran out of self pity, their pity, any old pity, and my nose dripped onto Rupert, a well hugged relic of a teddy who was always around in a crisis.
Well he asked for his privacy didn’t he? Wanted his own ‘space;’ Hmmm, well it used to be a space when he first asked for it!
What is a responsible parent supposed to do? We knew that we were working towards, ‘independent living,’ didn’t we? Had to face it sometime.
“Ok,” I agreed. “You promise to keep the cat out of the wardrobe, sort the laundry before it walks out on its own and leave a path to the bed in case you’re ill. Deal?”
“Mum, I promise.”
“Son, your nose will grow.”
“Mum, I’m 30!”
“Ah, so you are son, but you still tell porkies!”
Well, I kept my part of the bargain!
Pulling on the Marigolds I sniffed out the culprits responsible for creating unsavoury odours. Seventeen odd socks, six towels with mildew, and the remains of a dead cat curry that apparently leaped back out of the rubbish bin.
Rounding on the bed, bottoms up, checked underneath for signs of life. Yikes! No wonder the bedroom door was kept closed.
Five bottles of Mr Muscle all purpose cleaner, three rolls of extra large bin liners and two aerosols of Summer Breeze later, I emerged triumphant. I had the victory!
Childhood posters were down, along with BlueTak, drawing pins, Sellotape and lumps of plaster.
Bachelor boy was installed in his apartment with extra space for new collections of junk, arghhh! I mean possessions; and I, yes me, the long suffering mother, minder, chauffeur, cleaner, maid servant, financier..........!!!
YES I, am really looking forward to, and am going to ENJOY, every last second of my long awaited FREEDOM!
The phone rings. It’s late. It’s his number. Engage automatic panic mode!
“Son, what is it? Are you ok? Did you set fire to the cooker? Are you hurt?
“Calm down mum. None of those things.”
“You’ve been burgled? They’ve taken your yoghurt pot collection!”
“Feline’s dead? I’ll ring the undercat taker!”
“Mum, you know when I said that I wanted my space, didn’t want you fussing over me?”....
“You were so right son. We both needed to move on.”
“Well, I was thinking mum, you remember those scrumptious meat and tatie pasties you always made for supper on Sundays?”....
“Got the rolling pin son. Already on my way!”
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