Mary is a wife, a mother, a sister, an artist, a belated art-historian and a writer and independent researcher of early religious art.
May 1, 2017
I started university with my children — quite strange really to be in the same class as a son. He didn’t know me of course.
Why Italian – because I loved Italy and thought this might be an opening onto another world. I came home from my first lecture and threw myself on the bed in tears. How could I escape with my dignity intact?
I decided I would try another week.
I held the door open for students. I never sat in the front row or anywhere near the front. I didn’t ask questions, I didn’t answer questions. My assignments were always on time. I deferred to everyone. A real goody-two-shoes.
Tutorials were something else. I was mute with anxiety, frozen by the confidence of these young students yet loving them all for their acceptance. They simply didn’t see age.
Confidence is a sound barrier you simply have to break through. On the other side there is discovery, another life. All that chatter in the tutorial rooms is simply a smokescreen. It took time to realize that confident talk didn’t always equate to competence.
I loved mothering my children, the most profoundly satisfying task I will ever do, yet, as I walked down an autumnal Princes Street kicking the piles of leaves beneath my feet I thought: ‘this is freedom, this is my time, I am starting out’.
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