I took son number two out for lunch yesterday. This was for several reasons. The first was that I was starving, having been dieting for over 25 hours (that's a record, in case you're wondering). Secondly, it's his birthday on Thursday. Thirdly, I wanted some time with him which didn't involve anything university based. And lastly, but most importantly, the shop next door to the restaurant I suggested sold curtains. So I thought I would ply him with risotto and chocolate fudge cake, and then steer him towards the curtains.
Well the lunch was lovely. There was even some gratuitous flirting on the manager's part which son number two found excruciating. I did too, but smiled through it as befitting a grateful old bag with a Space Hopper overhang (muffin-top days are just a distant memory). So suitably stuffed (with excellent seafood risotto before you start thinking that I was swayed by the flirting) I steered him into the curtain shop. It was a quick visit I'm sorry to say, as the choice was limited, and in my son's words, the patterns were appalling.
So still no curtains. I just hope that the lady in the house opposite to his has a strong stomach and poor eyesight, and not necessarily in that order either.
So back home again to look at yet more curtains. This is becoming like something off the Krypton Factor and I have given up all hope of finding a pair before he leaves on Saturday. I have visions of his spare duvet cover being pegged up on the curtain rail, looking a rather amateur puppet show, while the rest of his housemates scream out 'It's behind you! and Oh no it isn't!' Anyway, curtains or no curtains, we are slowly coming towards the day he leaves.
He was a bit wobbly yesterday (too much risotto perhaps) and he told me that he was starting to feel just a little bit excited about moving out. I told him that as a mum, it was my job to prepare him for this, and to make sure that when he was ready, he would be able to fly. And here was his response..
'Oh you've done everything you can to make me ready Mum. It's not that I'm 'not ready', it's just I quite like living at home'.
I feel a bit like a mother hen, ushering her last chick towards the front door. The other three stampeded out of here like three Thompson gazelles, desperate to escape the shackles of living with their parents, but this one? Well he's a bit different, and I may have to put things in place in his room to make it a more pleasant place to lay his head each night. I am thinking of the following:
1. Chocolate...lots of it. In places where he wouldn't think to look.
2. £50 notes secreted around the room
3. A taped version of me singing 'You are My Sunshine'. This is not because it will send him off to sleep, but one airing of it will make him grateful to be anywhere other than where I am.
4. A life-size cardboard cut out of me to stand in the corner of his room. Son number one has one of these of himself which he was hiding around the house over the summer in the most inappropriate and annoying places. I would imagine that once the shock has worn off of having his mother staring at him in a disapproving manner, son number two will turn it towards the window (the one with no curtains) and use it to ward off any ne'er-do-wells who might be considering breaking in.
It might work, who knows. The funny thing is that he'll be back in a week's time for a night out with his three siblings. I am expecting a different boy to come back rather than the one who leaves this Saturday.
And that's how it should be...