It’s been two weeks since we took Harry to college and I’ve had to cut down on the amount of milk I buy. And bananas. And yoghurts. I’ve put the orange squash at the back of the cupboard, along with the crisps.
It’s funny the little things you notice when your child leaves home, even if it is only temporary. Doors are left open to allow the sunshine to filter through (Harry likes all doors shut), the 3D cinema glasses have stayed in the drawer (he likes them out) and the furniture in his room is permanently clear of figurines which makes cleaning easier. However, I now have the jobs of emptying the dishwasher every morning and clearing away the dishes at the end of our evening meal. These were tasks Harry had adopted as his own and he was very good at them. Molly – one of our black Labradors – has lost her sofa-companion and I’m sure she misses his constant kisses.
What I thought would be most noticeable, isn’t. For the last twelve years I had to be at home by 4.15pm on a weekday in order to be there to meet Harry’s school transport. However, our daughter has noticed that she hasn’t been nagged to “get a move on” at 4pm so the end of the school day has become a bit more relaxed for her.
Harry’s counsellor got in touch during the week to say that she has spoken to him on several occasions and feels that he is coping and settling well into the college routine and life. (Such a relief). He is enjoying working hard and starts his new timetable tomorrow. This will see him starting to gain valuable work experience in hospitality and retail. Football is scheduled for Wednesday evenings. (I didn’t mention the laces). He had been on a coach trip to see a musical at one of the regional theatres and was booked onto another to see a production of Peter Pan this weekend. (He will be in his element and they will have a job to stop him joining in).
She welcomed my suggestions as to how the college could have helped us and other parents on induction day and they have already put photographs up on the bedroom doors. They will look at implementing some of the other ideas next time. I am so glad that they are prepared to listen (and act upon) parents’ concerns promptly and this fills me with confidence.
And she wondered whether a member of staff could support Harry to Skype us so that we could have a more direct means of communicating with him? Now, that really would make a difference and I am looking forward to seeing his face on screen.