The lovebomber

26 Aug

Dear Son
So you’ve gone! Off with friends to a festival somewhere down the M4. Reading is a spot I associate more with a large train station, and long-established motorway services than a mecca for 90,000 music fans gathering in a field to celebrate grime, indie, rock and soul. But that’s my education lacking.
I’m pleased we parted on good terms – I have accepted that you didn’t need to pack wellie boots to wade through the muddy fields, a second sweater just in case of cold nights, or a pillow for your darling head. I do now understand that you prefer not to be weighed down by supplies of Paracetamol, sun cream or sticking plasters – I thank heavens you saw the wisdom of taking your Asthma inhaler. And I consider it a victory you have added a clutch of cereal bars, a toilet roll, 2 plastic bags for damp clothes, and wet wipes to your bag. Would deodorant have been too much to ask, and I wonder if you found the banana and Berocca I hid in the side pocket of the holdall? It was funny that you insisted on a taking a fold-up camping chair to save your butt from the hard ground. In my day we would’ve called you a sissy but I guess I’m out of touch.
So, my boy… have fun. Be safe. Eat something green or fresh occasionally. Keep in touch. Text often. Play nicely. These are my wishes for you and your crew. I hope you’ve heeded my attempts to teach you how to place someone in the recovery position should it be required. I hope you’ve not been searched and caught smuggling in alcohol or worse. And if you have, maybe don’t tell me? I confess I secretly hope you didn’t arrive in time to camp in the infamous ‘under-18s’ purple camp zone, and have had to join the family white camp with shower facilities and adults to watch over you. So much nicer.
In the next few days, I will try and get over my envy at the exuberance and ‘don’t fuss’ attitude of your teenage years – they make me nostalgic for own long gone youth. I will not succumb to the desire to call you 10 times a day to check you’re conscious and hydrated (wearing clean pants and brushing your teeth?). I will be impressed if you could drop me the odd message, and love it if you share the news of which acts you’ve seen and the best musicians you’ve discovered. I will not allow your younger brother to play your Xbox games, take up residence in your bedroom and ransack your belongings – much less report to me any of his findings. I will not be interested. Promise. When you come home on Monday, cranky, smelly and sleep-deprived, I will lovebomb you. I intend to be patient, not mind that you’ve left the tent, chair and sleeping bag behind, or if it takes a week to encourage you to unpack, much less wash, your kit.
Hmmm, and I won’t make a big deal out of the fact that, as I write, I’ve received a message delivered via a friend on an unknown mobile number, that you’ve lost your new iPhone 7 and will not be contactable. My imagination has upgraded the party it was having to a full-on rave in my head… it’s going to be a long, exhausting weekend.
Much love, Mum x

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