Does anyone have the instructions for letting go?

Around November 2002 I found out I was pregnant, from that day on my life changed, I was no longer Jo, I was your Mum.

In January I found out I was having twins. A revelation so surreal to me that I still haven’t come to terms with it. I’m a Mum, like a real, grown up, taking care of tiny human beings, Mum.

On the eve of the day that Boy A leaves for University and with Boy 1 fiercely independent (no idea where he gets that from) I’m sitting here trying to figure out how to let go, I don’t think I was given the instructions.

You see, from the moment I found out I was pregnant taking care of you both has been my purpose, my sole driving force, and I have loved every minute of it.

I have loved the last-minute fancy-dress creation, when you “forgot” to tell me it was dress up at school the next day. I have loved the school drop offs and pick-ups. I have loved creating picnics with only your favorite foods in. I have loved making you feel better when you were poorly, finding things you have lost, fixing things you have broken, making you laugh when you were sad. I have loved going on holiday with you, bringing you home pizza for a midnight snack when I’ve been out with the girls. I have loved feeding you, making your bed, cleaning up after you. I’ve loved being prepared for every eventuality and handling every situation that has been thrown at us no matter how hard.

I’ve loved being your constant, always here, never wavering, rock.

So now what do I do? How exactly do I let you go?

I know, I know, this is just the next phase of them growing up, this is how it’s meant to be. It’s good, positive and healthy. But I don’t want it to change (read that in the voice of a stroppy 6-year-old stamping their feet), I always want to take care of you.

So right now, I am doing the only thing I know how, I am preparing you for every eventuality I can think of. I’ve tried to think of every meal you may want to eat – you have the utensils, every ailment you may suffer – you have the medicines (I’ve put in two boxes of paracetamol because, well you know, it is university), you have towels, flannels, and sheets (and spares so you don’t need to wash and dry them the same day). You have 50 pens, because I know you can easily lose 2 pens a day.

But most importantly you have my number, you have a key to your home, and you have a Mum who, let’s face it, is never going to let go because quite frankly, I just don’t know how.

I will always be your constant, always here, never wavering, rock.

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