Marie Louise McConville: Tears and tantrums on the first day of school - and that's just the parents

 There were tears and tantrums on Abbie's first day at nursery school - and that was just her mother, Marie Louise
Marie Louise McConville

Boy oh boy, was I wrong.

When I decided to give this motherhood gig a go, I had stupidly been under the impression that the pregnancy bit and the labour bit and the birth bit, would be the worst parts. Turns out, they’re the easiest.

Not even the weaning bit, potty training bit, or the terrible twos compare to this week, when I faced my biggest and hardest challenge yet and yes, there were tears and tantrums galore - and that was just me.

If anyone knows how a parent survives these first-day-of-school-blues, please tell me because four days on, my heart still feels mangled and I can’t sleep with anxiety and worry.

On Tuesday morning, Abbie (yes, my baby Abbie) skipped into nursery on her first day with a big smile on her face.

I actually had to call her back and ask her for a hug and a kiss and then off she went - away from by my side and I just felt and continue to feel broken.

She had been over the moon that morning putting on her uniform, posing for the obligatory doorstep photo and then climbing into the car with her shimmery school bag.

She was jumping around with excitement as she waited for the school door to open and when it did, she just sprung into action.

I returned to the car and cried and cried.

For the next two hours I couldn’t settle.

The pain I experienced from missing her just consumed me and I counted down the minutes until I could collect her.

Out she came beaming with happiness, proudly clutching her first day at nursery painting and I just held her and kissed her and hugged her and cuddled her - and didn't want to let go.


She told me all about outside play and singing time and painting and despite the joy on her face, inside I just felt like I was falling apart.

That night, I couldn't sleep.

I just kept thinking about the last three years and how quickly they had passed by, all the time crying, worrying about the future.

On the other hand, Abbie slept soundly, no worries, no concerns.

I can only hope this journey gets easier and that I somehow find the strength from somewhere to help guide her and support her and above all else, not let her down.

So, here we go, off on this new adventure - wish me luck, goodness knows I need all the help I can get at the moment.


So, how's your bake-off experience going this year?

I have to say that whilst I'm a big fan of the show, for me, the new series is lacking something.

I was initially downhearted because we lost Imelda from Co Tyrone, who was the first contestant to lose her place in the famous tent however after that, I found myself falling out of taste with the series in general.

There's just something missing from this normally delicious recipe.

Perhaps it's the challenges - the fact that it started with biscuit week - or maybe it's Noel Fielding's creepy sideburns, I don't know but somebody had better do something or I'll be switching off soon.



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(Q) Where is Zuni Hairdressing located in Belfast?

Normal Irish News Rules Apply


The winners of the Slim's Healthy Kitchen competition are Gerry McCrory, from Belfast, Helena Reilly, from Markethill, and Kathy Lagan, from Maghera.

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