The year was 1997. It was the day my first son was christened at the Church of the Assumption, Booterstown.
His mother & I stood behind the altar as we were instructed, holding the baby along with two other couples with their own, waiting for the priest to call us to the font.
All of a sudden a pair of inquisitive young eyes peered at us from the other side of the altar. It was our 2-year old daughter, who had clearly gotten free of her Gran and gone to see what all the fuss was about.
Last Friday, I went to Our Lady’s School, Terenure, for a ceremony which is known as a “graduation mass”. Never heard of it before, but was more than happy to go.
As well as the mass the girls in my daughter’s year, due to take their Leaving Cert exams in a few weeks, got the chance to say goodbye to their alma mater. They were handed a yearbook by their principal (who was coming to an end to her time in the role and judging by the rhetoric & length of her speech, could well be going into politics), sang some songs, released some ceremonial balloons in the courtyard and in the most symbolic happening of the night, went to change from their school uniforms into their evening wear as they were all going out to celebrate afterwards.
During the ceremony the girls stood to the side of the stage, and down the very back, I could just about make out my daughter’s eyes peering over the classmates in front of her. This time, her location was chosen because she knew exactly what all the fuss was about, and she clearly preferred to stay in the background on occasions like this, much like her old man.
As a parent it was definitely quite a rollercoaster ride of emotions, with the sadness of seeing your first born all grown up contrasting nicely with the sheer joy of seeing your first born all grown up.
And in a bizarre twist of fate, just one week later, this coming Thursday, I have a meeting with my 4-year old’s infant school as I see the whole process start again!
This new blog is meant to be philosophical, and hopefully over the coming weeks I will be able to outline my overall take on life, the universe and everything as I attempt to, as the above tagline claims, “deconstruct my confusion”.
But I also feel the need to point out that when it comes to my wonderful kids, despite the lightning fast passage of time, there is no confusion whatsoever. I could not possibly be more proud.