Eloise graduated from High School this week – which means our family’s school days are over after 15 years. Everyone tells me it’s a happy time, so why am I so sad? After her formal on Friday night, which Geoff and I attended, I cried just about all the way home. The Year 12 students went off to a party and even though I was really happy to see them all leave on a “party bus” to a friend’s home to celebrate their new found freedom, I was dreadfully miserable. Get a grip, I told myself.
So I’ve worked it out – for 15 of the last 18 years we always went away the first Sunday of the holidays (that would be today in any other year) to sunny Queensland for our annual holiday. I’m not sad about her leaving school, I’m sad because I’ve missed out on our family holiday. So I sit here alone (OK not alone as Geoff is working in the garden), while Eloise has left for study camp for a week and Ruby is heading off to Melbourne tomorrow for a week with some girlfriends. Bliss, you might say, a week alone in the home (Geoff still is at work). But again, I’m missing my family holiday. So really it’s not about the change or transition of my children from school student to young adult, it’s about the fact that the long tradition of family holidays at this time of year has ceased. My mum always says how she used to love going on our family holidays and misses those days. Why? I used to think – we all piled into Uncle John’s car (7 of us), no seat belts and headed to Queensland – 14 hours of non-stop chatter between my mum and Nanna. BUT the memories and fun of those days are some of my favourites.
So I’m missing the chance to be with Geoff and the girls and family time. Even though it takes effort to pack, especially when you do it all for the children, getting in the car and taking off – it is well worth it. I actually use to wake the girls with the song “We’re all going on a Summer Holiday” by Cliff Richard played very loudly, this was the holiday alarm clock. Wherever you are in your family’s journey, please take time to go on holidays. You won’t regret the time, money and effort.
Enjoy the school holidays.
Love Chris xx