>> Tuesday, 30 March 2010
...2 days make.
We're on holiday - skiing - in France. We drop Boy #1 off at his first lesson at Ecole de Ski Francais, in the hope that he can learn just how much fun it is to encase your legs in what feels like cement, strap a couple of bendy boards to your feet, and go against all your natural instincts to take them straight off again, instead pushing yourself off down a slope of icy coldness to what seems like (the first time you do it) certain death.
The drop-off does not go well. There are tears, tantrums, and Husband and I are seriously questioning whether our older son will ever 'get' the fun (because obviously, that's what it is) in skiing.
I join Boy #1 half way through his third lesson to supervise break-time whilst their teacher takes some of his other pupils back down the mountain to meet their parents. The daughter of the family we are on holiday with - and who is also joining Boy #1 in ski school - is adamant that she has had enough for the day and that she wants to go home too. Boy #1, on the other hand, decides that perhaps a little bit longer wouldn't hurt, and manages to persuade her otherwise.
I look on, amazed, as 15 minutes later the barely-shaving-yet 19 year old teacher takes them both up the moutain and skis down an intermediate track with them. Boy #1 is skiing without poles and putting in perfect turns as he goes down the slope behind him, making little jumps on command and snow-ploughing to a stop when required.
He's having the time of his life, and I'm not sure I've ever been prouder; not because he's doing so well (although he is), but because Boy #1 has overcome his perfectly natural and understandable lack of confidence in an alien environment, has felt the fear, and has done it anyway.
In the paradox that is motherhood, of course, this gives me mixed feelings. He's growing up. This is amazing, wonderful, and a joy to behold. And a little bit scary, too; every step he takes - with me cheering him on from the sidelines - makes his obvious needs for me less. So as he learns to let go, I have to learn to let go too...