I have just returned from the trip of a lifetime to London with my three girls. Yer man was surplus to requirements so stayed at home and my son was at college.
Over the years we had hoped to bring our children to Disneyland Paris but it was never the right time financially. As I wondered at Christmas about the possibility of taking this trip, yer man rather wisely said it would never be the right time and we should just go.
So I booked our flights and a fabulous apartment in Soho using Airbnb and off we went on our adventure. I’d been meticulous in the planning except for one tiny detail, my youngest daughter, aged 15, was to sit her pre junior cert exam on Monday, the day after we returned home.
So while her classmates were swatting up on English, she was swanning around London, seeing the sights, getting lost on the tube, watching a show and not returning home until late Sunday night.
Not my finest parenting moment you may say? Well there I might disagree with
Life teaches us all lessons and as I watched my Dad die of motor neurone disease
thirty years ago, and more recently said goodbye to my friends young son Daniel, aged 13, and young Ben aged 6, I realised there are no guarantees of tomorrow.
So I chose to seize today.
Not unlike that day a couple of years ago when I allowed my eldest daughter take my youngest out of school early to go to the cinema. My then 17 year old was disgusted and giving out until I advised her she could take time off school to go too. I sent in notes telling blatant lies and waved my three girls off without one ounce of guilt, knowing that the lessons missed that day would soon be forgotten, but the memory of that trip to the cinema would last a lifetime.
And so I hope today, that my youngest will quickly forget the study she missed for her English exam of minor importance, and forever remember her first trip to London, with her Mum and two sisters.
I know I will.
photo credit: aftab. via photopin cc