Eckhardt wrote recently about the anxiety he felt at leaving his baby at day
care for the first time. Other parents commiserated, and promised him that it
gets better. The trouble is, it doesn’t:
is ten. Today is the day she’s been chattering away about for weeks- School
camp day. When the school loads the entire grade into buses and whisks them
away to some distant spot where the kids will learn about nature and teamwork,
while their parents glance at the clock every two minutes, waiting.
children will be a little weepy at night. For many, it will be the first night
away from home. Others will get caught up in the excitement and whisper and
giggle into the wee hours with their friends. I know what goes on at camps,
having been to a few, but I’m still petrified on her behalf.
school has promised buses with up-to-date safety records, but still... Buses!
And that’s just getting there. There are bee stings, food allergies and freak
accidents to fret over. What if they swim in a dam and something goes wrong,
or, God forbid, a pervert-criminal somehow manages to infiltrate the camp?
(Note to self: Only watch happy movies from now on).
of his horror at having to sign away his child’s life on an indemnity form- I
wish I could draft one for the teachers to sign:
hereby treat this child as my own and guard her with my LIFE.
personally ensure that bee stings, shark attacks, snake bites and lightning
bolts will not occur during my period of responsibility for this child. (Amend
as necessary for any and all ripples of nature and Acts of God.)
at all times make sure that this child is happy and smiling. Or else.
too much to cope with- especially since my youngest headed into Grade One this
year in his badly-laced shoes, and my eldest started as a small fish in the
violent and unpredictable ocean that is high school. My nerves!
Look, I may
be projecting a little: Apart from being excited and dancing from foot to foot
a lot, she simply mentioned this morning that she has a “bubbly tummy”. I know
a lot of you relate, though- I saw all of the parents with their sunglasses and
tissues waving goodbye as their precious children climbed onto the bus. It felt
dreadful, shocking and final, as my little girl with the big bag and the
shining eyes turned to wave the prettiest little wave, and headed into... the
I’ll try to
be brave. She’d like that.What has
been the most difficult challenge for you in terms of letting go of your child?
Why not send us your story to firstname.lastname@example.org and you could win a R250 kalahari.com voucher!