A few weeks ago Kaiden went off on exercise with the Army Cadets for the weekend.
I still feel a pang when he goes away. In my heart he'll always be my baby. Sshhh don't tell him though, he'll get all embarrassed.
My first precious baby. Even though he's nearly 15 and taller than I am.
On the day of leaving he packs what he needs to survive for the weekend.
Essentials you might say.
Such as his new coloured filter torch and a bucket full of lollies.
Essential survival gear that is.
It takes FOREVER to do up laces this long.
I made sure he did also pack warm clothes and his hootchie (ground sheet to make a tent). Can't have my precious baby getting cold now, can I?
All ready to go and do manly things for the weekend - hooyah!
So I drop him off, trying to act all cool and not let my mum emotions show too much. I settle for loving words and a quick hug, before he walks nochalantly off with his mates.
Oh my baby!
All weekend half my mind is with him at camp. Is he having a good time? Is he warm enough? Has he had enough to eat? What if he gets lost in the bush??????
I have to keep giving myself a mental shake, he is 15 for goodness sake. He'll be FINE.
Then finally it's time to pick him up. I wait in the car whilst they scurry around unpacking the trucks, eyes searching the crowd of Aus-cam clad bodies, looking for the familiar shape of his back, or to catch a glimpse of his profile in the crowd.
Aaahh, there he is. My precious little baby.
See mum I'm fine. Stop being such a worry-wort.
Back safe and sound.
Back tired, happy and more than a little dirty.
Oh by the way mum, we didn't have the chance to wash all weekend.
And oh so smelly. Eewww!
Now go have a shower.
My precious baby.