So, I managed to book B into the Cotswold Forest School last Friday for the first time. It's based in Cirencester and happens monthly.
I have to say, I am SO proud of my boy at how brave he has been since he came out of school. He has been put into many situations where he knows nobody but has to immediately make an effort to join in. He is learning that if you just watch from the sidelines and don't get involved it's all a bit boring ( a good metaphor for life too!) But it's not always easy, is it, to break into a new, fully established group of people who you don't know and you aren't sure what's happening.
So, when we turned up a bit late (car issues, SatNav issues, solar eclipse faffing) and I literally marched him into a wood and sent him off with a (lovely) stranger called Johno, I was so pleased that he dug deep and embraced his nerves. He didn't know what to expect but then neither did I really.
They made dens, dug holes, tracked red deers, make footprint casts of animals, made campfires, cooked bacon and generally wallowed in a whole lot of mud.
As he rounded the corner and I saw this caked monster ambling towards me dragging his bag behind him in the mud I realised there was no option but to strip down to pants for the journey home.
And I cannot think the last time I have seen his eyes light up like they were telling me about everything they got up to, who fell over, the names of his new friends, what he learned about the wildlife. He was like Barnaby, only with a fresh, dirty, reconnected-with-nature glow around him.
He had a fabulous time, which totally made ' feeling the fear and doing it anyway' completely worth it.
More than a few lessons learned there, I think!