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Today son, especially today, I am bursting with pride; paradoxically, I’m also feeling an acute sense of loss, with waves of emotion that are threatening to overwhelm.

It’s hard to believe that you are going to Uni – I don’t think it was on the radar for either of us, it just seems to be something that’s evolved.

I remember, after you’d had a particularly bad experience at the School where you’d chosen to go in to sixth form and do your ‘A’ Levels, and it didn’t work out in the way that you’d hoped.  Your confidence was so badly knocked that you turned to me and, with a finger pointing to your head, you said that you didn’t think you had it ‘upstairs’ to even go to Uni. I cried and told you that in no uncertain terms, were you ever to even think like that, and that you had it within to do whatever you wanted to do, including Uni if that’s what you chose.

After walking away from sixth form, and without knowing what you were going to do next, you applied for a sports course at College and I saw you flourish in an environment that you enjoyed and your confidence began to grow again.  I was so happy and, extremely relieved.  As the two years passed, it became clear that you were on track to follow your dreams and when you had to resit your Maths GCSE in order to be able to go to Uni, I saw a drive in you like never before, just so that you could achieve it.

As you know, I don’t care what you do as long as you’re happy, but I’m incredibly chuffed that you are the first person in the whole of our family to go to University.  The flip side is that it also feels like the end of an era and I’d give anything for my mum and dad to see you enter this momentous time in your life.  I’m sure they’re looking down with a sense of pride – I’d like to think so, anyway.

In the main, it has just been us two for the past 13 years and even though you’ll be coming home on a regular basis, I don’t know what I’ll do without you around every day.  These past years have been a bumpy ride in the extreme, and I think it’s safe to say that we’ve been to hell and back in many respects.  Throughout, you have been my constant inspiration to keep on going, even when I didn’t feel as if I could or even wanted to, and to see you now having grown in to a confident and level-headed young man, just blows me away.  I love that we communicate with one another, spend time together and your all too accurate impersonation of me, causes me to kink with laughing.  We have our moments of course, it’d be weird if we didn’t, but my God, how did you become so wise!

When I’m fraught, it’s your wise words that calm and reassure me and help me to be more measured and see things in an altogether different light and I’m left wondering, ‘hang on a minute, I thought I was the speaker and therapist.’

I’m so happy and excited that you are spreading your wings and flying off to do what you want to do and gain some independence in the process.  I’m also going to miss you very much.

You’re far more than a son, you’re my rock.  Thank you for making my life good.

All my love, Mum

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