Family: Janet Christie: Mum’s the Word - Exam season is over and we are all feeling the joy

PIC PHIL WILKINSON.TSPL / JOHNSTON PRESS''JANET CHRISTIE ,  MAGAZINE WRITER
PIC PHIL WILKINSON.TSPL / JOHNSTON PRESS''JANET CHRISTIE , MAGAZINE WRITER
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Now there’s something I haven’t seen for a while. Youngest coming along the hall smiling, a proper smile that reaches the eyes and beams from ear to ear, not the ‘I’ve got a month of exams’ rictus grin she’s been sporting for the past few long, long weeks.

Now there’s something I haven’t seen for a while. Youngest coming along the hall smiling, a proper smile that reaches the eyes and beams from ear to ear, not the ‘I’ve got a month of exams’ rictus grin she’s been sporting for the past few long, long weeks.

“I’ve just finished my last exam!” she shouts. “Yay!”

I give her a bear hug, “Well done.”

“And so have I,” shouts her pal, following along the hall. “Woohoo!”

Bear hug for them too, more well dones, I’m proud of yous.

But wait, I haven’t even left for work yet, it’s still early, even though I’m running late.

“No, your last exam is today. You’re missing it!” I say to them.

“Been and done it. Finished. Loads of time. It was common sense.”

Oh.

“Common sense, well you’ve got plenty of that,” I lie.

Come on, they’re teenagers which equals being tied to an idiot (can we still say ‘idiot’? If not I apologise to all idiots, and am one myself so it’s allowed, if you follow the rules for use of the N-word and Tim Minchin’s Only a Ginger Can Call Another Ginger Ginger – though when I interviewed him once he said he wasn’t ginger so maybe it’s ironic at which point I throw in my PC towel).

Never mind, it’s good news – “The Hunger Games are over for another year!” I say, as the survivors race off to the park or the chicken wing emporium or nail bar – wherever teenagers gather to rebuild their shattered egos and self-esteem after being educated.

“Or is that too negative about the exam system?,” I ask Middle Child, who is reclining on my bed, on his way to the shower, or not, could go either way. Eldest has already decided against it and gone to lie down again, exams being over for them too.

“Nah. School is Victorian. It’s all wrong. Measuring the wrong things.”

“If it were Victorian you’d all be able to write nicely,” I say.

“What?”

“Handwriting. You’d all have nice handwriting.”

“Hand... writing?”

He’s still in recovery.