Meathman's Diary: Leaving Cert tea and sympathy

“You'll be grand,” said the mother as she poured the tea out for me. Having one's tea decanted for you was not a thing in our house, you made your own, unless it was a time of deep crisis or real concern.

This was one of those times.

I stared down at the hot milky brew but the comforting aroma of the Barry's did little to quell the mania-filled butterflies in my stomach.

The moment of truth had arrived, the point of no return, the dark door into the big bad adult world was about to be pushed open, the Leaving Cert results needed to be collected.

The mother wasn't saying much, she knew I'd probably spent more time listening to the Smiths than swatting, more time designing and colouring in my weekly study chart than actually bothering to use it as intended.

I'm sure there were affairs of the heart at play too, mercifully, none of it conducted on the platforms of Snapchat or Insta. It all mattered little now.

My walk to the school grounds was a mere four minutes, timed to perfection over the previous five years (no TY options for us back then).

When I arrived at the school some lads had been and gone, straight into cars and off without even opening the envelope. Others huddled together in alcoves, gently lifting the corner of the envelopes while eyes clenched shut offered up silent prayer.

A few us opted to head outside to the field and sit down on the grass and open them.

"I know I did shite, I just know it," said one lad, unopened rap sheet in hand but getting his retaliation in first.

"I heard Kevin Leonard got seven As, the b*****x", said another, looking to dilute his expectations.

"What you get, what you get???” went the cries around the support circle.

"Three Bs, two Cs and a bleedin' D."

"Five Bs an A and a C."

Me? Four honours, two passes and a fail, Irish. The Irish one I knew the result of long before confirmation came out. It's hard to get a pass when you've stormed out of the exam 10 minutes in.

In truth, the results were in line with expectation. I had repeated, Irish aside, what I had done in the Mocks. Hindsight tells me I could have done better. Hindsight also tells me how little of it mattered.

This year's class of '22 will get their results this Friday and the Diary wishes them every success and hope they get the marks they worked for and the courses or options they want.

You won't have to walk to school to collect the results, you can sit in bed and relax and open them on the online portal thingy and hopefully remember that it's not the beginning or end of your world one way or another, it's just a stop-off on the Wild Atlantic Way of Life.

If you are staying in bed to get your results, be sure to call on mam or dad to bring you that hot milky cup of tea, and enjoy it!