There were a few tears at school drop-off this morning when the Successful Other Half said goodbye to her nine-year-old daughter. Ths time, though, the tears weren’t coming from the SOH’s desire to stay-at-home rather than face the relentless grind of the office, but from Child 1.
This is most unlike her. She is one of the most robust peole I’ve ever met. She adapts to circumstances like a chameleon, because she’s had to, given the complicated nature of our family (one mum; one dad; one stepdad; one stepmum; two brothers by stepdad; one brother by dad; three step-siblings by stepmum. Phew!)
She always, always copes. Like her mother, she’s got a Just-Get-On-With-It personality. She’s strong in heart, mind and body; both mentally and physically robust.
But this morning she was upset, and actually, a little scared. She was setting off for a three-day adventure activity course with her school. It will involve climbing, kayaking, abseiling, raft-building. She’ll have a fantastic time, but she’s worried for two reasons: 1) It’s the first time she’s been away from either of our homes for more than one night, and 2) what if she can’t do the activities?
As my SOH and I kissed her goodbye this morning, I reminding her of last year. We were on holiday in Corsica and right above where we were staying was a paragliding school. This, for those who don’t know, involves getting strapped up to an instructor, who then jumps off the side of a hill into thin air, with nothing but a very large, blown-out hankie to prevent you dropping like a stone.
I went up first to make sure it was OK, then then both the SOH and Child 1 couldn’t wait for their chance to have a go.
I reminded Child 1 this morning abut how nervous she was; that she wanted to pull out; that when we gave her the option to call it off, she refused and went up. And when she did go up, she loved every, terrifying moment of it.She was only eight at the time.
As you can see from these pictures, it’s not for the faint-hearted. But, then, my Stepdaughter has a heart as big as a lion’s. Continue reading