Monday, 12 April 2010


My eldest son, Mark, is 18 today. Where has the time gone? I can't believe that a child of mine has officially hit adulthood!

Being the nostalgic type, I have of course been thinking back over the past 18 years and remembering some of the times we have had; good and not so good. Being a parent brings many joys, but is also a massive responsibility...

All those HUGE life shaping decisions to make! What if I get it wrong?

The pride of achievements celebrated and good times shared together.

Living through difficulties and emerging in one piece.

Onging battles >:(    "No, I don't care how brilliant you think it is...I really don't want to watch that video on YouTube at 2 o'clock in the morning! This is me, in bed - asleep!!!"

There are hundreds of stories I could tell, but thought I might share just one; which you will probably find hilarious, but scared me half to death!

It was a hot afternoon during the long summer holiday and we had been stuck indoors all day, so I decided to pack a picnic and drive us up to Alport Heights, which is only about 10 miles from home & has great views. Mark was 15. We ate our picnic and then Mark wandered off to "have a look" at the big pillar of rock slightly below us.

The next thing I know...

It took him about 2 minutes to reach the top, but twenty heart-stopping minutes (with 2 false starts) to get down again! I think I was more worried for his safety during those twenty minutes than at any other point during the whole 18 years; and all I could do was watch!

The amazing thing is, that he wasn't phased at all. He was so confident in his own ability to reach the bottom in one piece, that he didn't bat an eyelid, whereas I can feel my pulse rate increasing just thinking about it!

Three years on, he climbs regularly at the Derby Climbing Centre and has been offered a conditional place at the University of Cumbria to study for a BA in Outdoor Leadership. No doubt part of his course will focus on... and safety :p

Happy birthday Mark! :)

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