Rather an extreme between Eldest and Youngest sons at the moment.
Eldest rang today.
Needs £200 for deposit on house for next year.
He is at university, in halls.
'Oh,' I said. 'Do you need it today?'
'Yes,' he said.
'OK. I'll send it.'
'No,' he said. 'I need it today.'
He explained that all the others had paid. Was worrying about not getting the house, blah, blah, blah. Could I transfer money into his account Today.
Can see the scenario... Eldest has procrastinated. His friends are yelling at him for his deposit. He rings home at eleventh hour. Mother must Save the Day.
'Right, I'll ring the bank and get a transfer,' I say.
'Thanks, Mum. Will pay you back.' Can hear relief in his voice.
'No problem.' I say. 'You ok?' Settling down for little chat.
'Starving. Better go. Bye, Mum. Thanks.'
Sit and look at phone for a moment.
Sigh. Get up and on.
Several hours later...
Youngest is Very Naughty Indeed. Shouting Poo and Bogies and even, heart stoppingly, Penis.
Got Very Cross. Daughter had friend for tea who found Youngest hilarious. Which got him increasing his use of Expletives. Bum. Poo. Bogies.
Resorted to Naughty Step. For four minutes.
Youngest muttering to self on step and audible from kitchen. Silly Mummy. I hate Mummy. You are a Poo.
Friend was collected.
Baths all round. Told each and every child that they had been awful during tea and that I had loathed every minute.
Youngest continues to look sad.
'What's up?' I ask.
He looks at the floor.
'What's the matter?'
He looks up, sad face, big eyes.
'Don't want to leave you, Mummy. I want you.'
'I want you too, darling.'
He continues to look utterly miserable.
'Don't want to leave,' he repeats.
'You don't have to, darling. You can stay with Mummy for as long as you like.' (oh, god)
His little lip starts trembling.
'But, Mummy. I have to.'
'Why, why do you have to leave?'
'When I am Big,' he says, face tragic.
I give him a huge hug. Hold him close.
And think of my Eldest. Nearly twenty. I remember chats like this with him. His dread of leaving me. How he wanted to stay at home for ever. Never go.
Hug Youngest again and help him on with his pyjamas. We clean his teeth. Brush his hair. Read a book. Cuddle close before lights out.
One day I can show him this blog. Jog his memory. Make him see it like it was.
Because one day it will all be different.
'Oh, Mum, forgot to say...'
'Yes?' (a little hopeful)
'Can you send me my Gibson guitar book? It's in my room somewhere.'
'Sure. Will do tomorrow. You OK?'
'Yup. Better go, off out.'
'Bye, darling, I love you.'
Glad he's nineteen.
But wish he was four again.
Just for a tiny bit.
How time flies.