It was pretty evident from an early age that my first born was never going to be the sort of person who was going to be happy tied down to a desk job when he became a grown up. We got an inkling that he had an adventerous streak when at the age of two he disappeared briefly on the day we moved to the country. After five minutes of blind panic we found him in a field of sheep.. stark naked! Fortunately, both Sam and the sheep seemed unfazed by his little adventure !
It didn’t take us long to realise that our adventerous offspring would make breaking for freedom a habit. He would, much to our embarrassment, climb out his bedroom window (ground floor!) and let himself into our neighbours homes. It wasn’t until we Sam proofed our garden that his little wanderings ceased.
Going out and about could be a nightmare. Our little chap would break for freedom at every opportunity especially when he got too old for the dreaded reins. I hate to think how many times I had to charge around Waitrose trying to catch him. I lost him completely on one trip only to discover him hiding behind the toilet rolls in the household goods aisle!
The biggest scare he inflicted on his poor parents was on a holiday to France. Sam decided to try, without our knowledge, the zip wire that was strung high, as in scarily high, over a lake. Being a little chap, his weight wasn’t enough to keep the momentum going, and eventually he came to a halt dangling about 20 ft over the lake! His poor dad had to wade into the water fully clothed and encourage a not too fazed son to drop, which he did! Apart from being very wet, no harm was done. Sam, feeling that this wasn’t enough excitement for one day, promptly got lost in the maize maze. Enough was enough, the day was ruined and Sam was sent to his sleeping bag (we were camping) without any pain et fromage!
It didn’t surprise us one bit that he loved being a cub, then a scout and finally an army cadet. Not only did he thrive on adventure, but he loved being part of a team and in time, the discipline and respect that the associations taught him. They also gave him valuable life skills and the confidence to embrace challenges.
When he became a grown up he decided to leave the nest and become a student. He did all the normal student activities..drink, drink, drink and occasionally study. Three years flew by. He graduated, but the chances of him getting a job in his then chosen industry, film, was very slim. After months of part time, dead end jobs and struggling financially he made the big decision to become a soldier, a decision that didn’t surprise me one little bit!
Two days ago, fit to burst with pride and love, I watched my lovely boy pass out and become a fully fledged soldier in The British Army complete with the stripe of a lance corporal. It had been quite a journey but he had worked so hard to get there. My wee lad, who frolicked once with sheep had become a man and is soon to be a dad. And I know he’s going to excel at being both!
On his request, I can’t show you a photo of him in uniform. A pity, he looked so smart and as a mum I want to show him off to the world. Another time maybe!