Sunday, 5 June 2011

Dear Son


My favourite photo of us - How the years have flown.


I know you think "I'm on your case", I know you think "I'm stressing out"

so I felt maybe if I wrote it down and you read it, giving me a chance to explain how important this time truly is to the rest of your life, you might understand what I am trying to say.

 You are young, just 16, I know to you, that you feel all grown up.  I understand, I did too when I was 16 but believe me my darling you have so much more life ahead of you.  So much time to go out, to date, to stay up late and play online with your mates, so much time.  This time though, these few weeks and that's all it is, a few weeks could you please humour me and show me that you are trying to study, that you are taking your examinations seriously ?

I am so proud of you, more than you could ever know.  You have achieved far more already academically than I ever did, you have excelled and gained a scholarship to one of the best independent schools in Devon, all by yourself (well perhaps with a little help from me, but not much)  Its your talents on the sports field and the classroom that have got you so far. 

I want to support you, be there for you but I don't know how,if you won't let me in, if you shout at me and slam doors.  I'm worried (its my job).  The world is a very different place now from when I was 16.  I joined the army after not taking my examinations seriously enough, with thoughts of travelling the world.  Now you need a degree to be accepted into most regiments, just to be sent straight to war zones.

I've tried, I really have, not to put pressure on you, to leave you to work it out yourself.  But I'm anxious now with the lack of revision at home.  You've seen and heard maybe too much of the strain that dad and I have had over the last few years.  I want so much more for you, I don't want you ever to have to struggle in the ways that we have. 

Knowledge is power my darling.  You can go anywhere, be anything.

I want you to fly, to be happy and free.

You are my pride, my joy, my No 1 Boy !

I love you.

Mum xxx

22 comments:

  1. a heartfelt letter, good luck to your son in his exams, I must have worried my mum sick with my lack of revision, but somehow stumbled through and came out with amazing grades, have faith your son sounds like he will have a bright future!

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  2. Sarah, thank you for taking the time to comment. I pray my son follows you then, he seems so laid back about it all. He has 4 exams this coming week including 2 maths ones and history and where is he at the moment ? out with his girlfriend ! chews finger nails off.

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  3. That made me well up a little. A lovely open letter. I hope it touches him x

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  4. Thank you Nicki, I just hope some of it gets through to him. Its such a fine line between "support" and "pressure". I just want him to see it written down so he knows how much I really love him and want him to have a wonderful life. I truly believe education gives you that freedom. xx

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  5. now I understand why my mum said I caused her stress, in my eyes I was good as gold... well certainly not as bad as some others, however I did NO revision for my GCSE's I had just meet my boyfriend (who conincidently I'm still with now!) and I couldn't see my mums point, when she made me stay in I never revised anyway, she was convinced my boyfriend wouldn't last, she was convinced I'd do terribly, she made me get a part time job in the local shop, to stop me spending all my time with the boyfriend, just made me want to be with him even more in my 'free time' and hence less revision still, if your son is a fundamentally sensible boy he will be fine, exams can be passed with common sence and 10 mins revision beforehand - honestly I got 7A's 4B's and a C and I remember the day we went to pick up my results - boy was I smug and mum completely gobsmacked!!

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  6. oh and maybe you should nto publish my post, tell him I secretly revised loads ;)

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  7. Sarah, you are soo funny. I will show him the post, minus the comments : ) xx Thank you xx

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  8. What a lovely post, we've been having a bit of day of it with our eldest today (9 going on 19) about his attitude and easy-come, easy-go outlook and trying to get him to interact and pull his weight, blah, blah, blah. I'm sure we just sounded like the teacher in Charlie Brown. He's a really good boy but we have high expectations and want to nip stuff in the bud early on, perhaps I need to blog to him?!

    Hope this post strikes a chord with your lad, he seems like a sensible kid who's just wanting to manage his own life like anyone would at his age. xxx

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  9. Thank you Christy for your comment and yes I have been told that we mothers just sound like White noise to our boys ! Hey Ho xx Good luck with your soon too xx

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  10. I read this just before bed last night with a tear in my eye. I hope it helps and I can imagine I will be doing the same thing. The picture of you both is stunning. I love it and good luck x

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  11. My darling daughter you have done all you can for Jacob it is upto him now to prove your support nd love for him. When you joined the army it broke my heart but I knew it was what you wanted and to get away from our terrible situation at home and to breath without restrictions, you did it and achieved so much. Try not to worry too much because with all our support Jacob will get there. xxxxxxxom

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  12. Aww I hope all goes well. Loving the last comment from Mum. That's so nice.

    Will keep everything crossed

    Lisa

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  13. I am sure that in years to come he will look back and think you were and are a great mum. I was so like him as a teen, I didnt listen to anyomne.

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  14. This post really affected me Karen. I have two teens doing exams at the moment - Son (17) doing AS and daughter (15) doing GCSE. Son is a gifted mathematician and physist but was reently kicked out of his class being prepped for Oxbridge because he just isn't making the grades. He makes silly decisions in exams, doesnt read the paper fully, misses questions out etc. It breaks my heart when I know how talented he is. Like your son he's a good kid, but he just finds it so difficult to apply himself and do the study. It frightens me how hard things are for our kids, when we were their ages we just did the exams and hoped for the best. Vix x

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  15. Wow Karen. What a powerful post.

    If it helps, I was a bit like your son at his age. I ended up sitting 18 O'level exams because I kept on failing the buggers. 16 is a crap age for many boys.

    It wasn't until I was 18 and a couple of months before A-levels when I realised that more than anything else I wanted to leave home. The easiest way of doing this was to get to Uni I thought. For the first time in my life I made the decision to do a bit of work...just to get the grades I needed.

    I had discovered a goal. That's all it took.

    Can I share a bit of advice my Mum gave me over the 'phone a couple of weeks ago. I was stressing (for all the same reasons you give about my 14 y/o).

    It was simple advice!

    "don't worry so much"

    Bob X

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  16. Vegemitvix oh sweetie, thank you for taking the time to comment. I really, really feel for you, its so hard to know how to support them when these things happen. You must be so upset for him and what I now realise is truly how we are able to look back and see where we went wrong as a teenager. Why is life like that ? My son is so chilled I could scream, but have decided there is no more I can do, its his life and he will have to learn by his own mistakes. The same way I did, it took me until I was 45 to find a job I truly love xx Big hugs lovely and hopes that all our children find their way and whats "right" for them.

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  17. Bob, you made me cry x Thank you for your mum's great advice.

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  18. Oh Karen I understand your stress I really do, I gave up on school at sixteen and always always wish I hadn't , it's so much harder to achieve what you dream without those pesky pieces of paper. Teen Ellie on the otherhand is to far the otherway, she is so stressed out by the whole thing , we have regular panic attacks and huge crying sessions here. If only they could take a little from each other ;) good luck Karen, and just remember you are doing all you can, u have to just trust he will come good, I'm sure he will :)))) xxxx love and hugs as always xxxx

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  19. Helen thank you so much, I was thinking about Ellie the other day and wondering if she was also sitting her G.C.S.E's I must admit I think I probably have the easier option with the "laid back approach" He went to school yesterday for his History exam with just a pen and a ruler stuffed in his pocket, no blazer and his sleeves rolled up! My friends son made himself physically sick every day and caused total chaos at home when he sat his examinations and came out with 10 A's and 2 A* 'S !!!
    Massive hugs to you too sweetie. Nightmare time and to think Nigel and I will have to do this all again ! With TWINS ! In ten years time when we are 60!!!! GOD HELP US !

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  20. Lol so funny! I was just thinking the same the other day... I had Ellie at 21 and if I had stoped there, I would nearly be child free, haha. But I am so very glad I have jack and Milly. As you say, lord just give us strenth by the time they all get to that teen age ;) we can always weild our walking sticks at em I guess ;D x

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  21. You look totally hot in that pic too by the way, just had to add that ;) x

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  22. What a wonderful letter - I hope your son reads it and at some point in the future understands your worries and axieties. My youngest son (now 23) didn't study for his GCSEs very much and ended up having to repeat a year. The only bonus (if you can call it that) was that it really made him wake up to the fact that if he wanted things in life he had to work for them. He went on to get his GCSEs and A levels so all was not lost. xx

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