His enthusiasm caught me off guard. I had grown accustomed to his refusals. His default negative responses when faced with any mention of the word school. "Bye Bye School" had been the catch phrase of the last few weeks. Rory's like that though, he just says no to everything; just in case.
This morning when I crept in to give him is 7.30am feed and meds, he was still bundled under the blankets snuggling up to bear. I worked away at his tube, able to carry on without disturbing him. His eyes opened, just a crack, he took in the light grey morning sneaking in between the curtains. He sat up, and announced, "I'm going to school today". This was a promising start. I thought it best not to rush him so I let him have a little lie in, a few moments to contemplate his new educational fate.
We busied ourselves with the usual morning routine, uniforms were donned, toast was crunched and caffeine was administered in strong doses to the grown ups.
His regulation grey trousers were proffered, and accepted, along with the grey shirt and school jumper, which he had previously deemed to be too 'scratchy'. All were put on without so much as grunt of protest.
I had expected, if not an all out battle, at the very least some very vocal objection, none were forthcoming. He was positively jovial at the thought of the uniform. He completely blind sided me, with his cheerful acquiescence. The lump in my throat came on very suddenly and before I could swallow it down, the tell-tale brimming of the lower eyelids began. I could feel a full scale wobble coming on. It seemed completely disproportionate to the situation as Captain Sensible, just popped on his shoes and asked for his Madagascar school bag. Fair enough, the kid was going to play it cool!
We snapped the obligatory photos, the kids chuckled and off we went.
Simple as that.
The entry to the class was equally low key. He sauntered in like he owned the joint. Charmed his teacher and Special Needs Assistant.
"Slan, Chickenlicken, see ya later" was the last I heard as I rushed out the door - the fear of making a complete show of myself was now even more acute. I had one aim, get past the school gate without making eye contact with any other parent.
I hadn't allowed myself to imagine this day, it seemed far too presumptuous. Now that it's here; all nonchalance and normal, I don't quite know what to do with myself!
It has taken us six years to come from this :
To this :
Sometimes the enormity of normal just knocks the stuffing out of me!