Tralee Life Life In An Irish Town


A Full Week of School

A full week at school for Fred, the first for a while. Between holidays, seizures, bugs and colds he just hasn’t had the full five days in a row for a while. It all went smoothly, Fred didn’t complain of tiredness or boredom, nor did he feign confusion to try slip out of going. In a way he was just accepting of this is what he has to do, get on with it and keep the parents happy. At school Denise, Terry, Olivia and Rose were all full of praise for how much he has come on but all thought that March had been a bit of a wipe out. Denise said how this week had been one of his best, Rose and Olivia agreed. ‘The women that care for me’ as he calls them were all in agreement. Terry, the principal, has a more removed role but in a meeting with Lisa he was saying how changed a boy he sees from the one who started twelve months ago. Maybe now that Fred knows there isn’t any escaping the routine he’ll take it all that more seriously.

Jaden still hasn’t forgiven Fred fully for the betrayal of his friendship with TJ. Poor TJ, who Fred hasn’t mentioned since, has been kicked to the side. Though Jaden is back on good terms with Fred he still refused to sit with Fred on the bus trip to the Aquadome. Fred was very upset and told me when he came home at lunchtime that he had to sit on his own on the bus. The idea of the little man, sitting on his own, looking out the window and not understanding why Jaden was still cross, really upset me but life can be tough on us all I suppose. Yesterday Jaden came over and was still with us when I arrived home from Cobh. A very quiet Jaden but one who didn’t want to go home when Lisa called time at 8pm so all must be ok in the camp. Fred was sad that Jaden had gone but understood as it was getting late.

He didn’t understand though when Mummy said it was bedtime at 9.30pm. Reluctantly he followed her up the stairs, asking me why as he left the room. As usual I explained that his brain needs the rest, he needs to do what he was told, he’d had a great day with Jado and 9.30pm was late enough for any young man.

Within five minutes he was back down...

“I don’t love that old lady anymore,” he said, standing in front of me, pointing upstairs to where his mother was waiting. Then I heard the door of his mother’s room close so I knew the row was gone beyond repair.

“Don’t you love your mother?” I asked, “the woman who cares for you, loves you, cuddles you, minds you when you faint, is always there for you?”

“I’m sick of her,” he declared, getting in under a blanket on the couch.

After I watched my program I started to tidy up and get ready for bed. Fred sat up on the couch and asked if I would read him a bedtime story. Though I love doing so I had to say no, explaining that as he had been bold and said horrible things about Mummy he had to go straight to sleep. As I put Lisa’s wine glass out to the kitchen I heard a “sorry” come from the edge of the couch. The two of us trudged up to bed and he was asleep in my arms within minutes. All the fighting must have exhausted him

This morning when I got up Fred said he wasn’t ready yet and I went off to make breakfast, telling Fred I’d call him when it was ready. When I went up to fetch him he wasn’t in bed and he wasn’t in the bathroom. Up in his mother’s bed I found him, cuddled up to her, telling her how beautiful she is and how much he loves her.

All was forgiven.

On the way to school during the week Fred was looking out the window while I was driving. The Burt Bacharach song “What the world needs now” came on the radio, just after a Martin Luther King clip. MLK was pouring his heart into the speech and I was reciting it along with him. Burt Bacharach segued in nicely after “my eyes have seen the glory.” After a few lines of me singing about love sweet love Fred spoke...

“Dad,” he said without turning his head.

“Yes?” I asked, thinking he may ask who had been talking on the radio or who was singing the beautiful song.

“Please stop singing, it’s hurting my ears.”

After I picked myself up off the floor we drove on to school.

Fred’s new activity, initiated by him, is to go for a walk at break times. Denise, Fred and Jaden go around the school a few times, Lisa watching from the car, convinced that he’ll keel over. It’s great that Fred wanted to do something outside of the games they’ve been playing, expressing himself and not letting our fears rule his life.

Long may that last.



Posted by John Verling

Filed under: News Leave a comment
Comments (0) Trackbacks (0)

No comments yet.

Leave a comment

No trackbacks yet.