It’s funny how feelings can change after a bit of time – namely, a month of school holidays.
Sunday afternoon, H announces, “I wish we had more time off school.”
“But you could have…” I said, surprised. “It was your decision to go back for Term 3.”
She looked a little sheepish. “I wish we could just move now.”
Interesting…Maybe she felt a bit odd going back for Term 3 knowing that this was her last one? Perhaps being away from her friends and the familiar routine for four weeks was what she needed to process the move and be OK with it? Or maybe she just wants to get it over and done with?
It’s hard to tell. On Monday morning, she did seem a little apprehensive about going back, but by the time I picked her up she was absolutely fine.
T, on the other hand, who’d been adamant we should move as soon as possible so we’d arrive in Melbourne at the same time as his friend, was incredibly excited about seeing his mates again. He didn’t seem at all perturbed that this was the final term, just happy to know that he’d be with his buddies.
So now I’m wondering, are we prolonging the agony by staying? Would it have been better not to send them back once the ties were broken over the break? Sure we had play dates but they’d gotten out of the habit of seeing their friends on a daily basis. Perhaps sneaking out of the country might have saved them some emotional turmoil?
As a parent, the self-doubt can be crippling. Did I do the right thing? Did I make the right decision? What if I’d done this differently? I don’t think this feeling will ever change so I guess embracing the decision has to be the way forward.
Maybe their final day of school will be as emotional as when we first told them we were moving. But I do believe that as difficult as it will be, that’s something we need to work through as a family. Leaving friends behind is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do. Some people you know you’ll see again but others? A lot of water will pass under the bridge before paths cross again – if ever – and that feeling is incredibly sad. But the one constant is family.
Despite the fights and consistent, persistent bickering, the kids are a tight little unit and despite outward appearances, they do care deeply for each other. I’ve seen how much they support each other when we’ve moved in the past and they’re amazing. And that’s how they’ll cope. It’s how we’ve always coped.