I’ve been a school mum for an entire year now… hard to believe I’ve spent 12-months arriving at the school gates with all the children I own dressed, fed, and mostly on-time with all the ‘stuff’ they need… but I have.
So here’s my clearly-now-expert guide to surviving the school run in style. As you’ll be doing it FOREVER (or atleast until you are nearly dead.)
- Perfect the fine art of turning your children out completely beautifully – plaited hair, neat clothing, clean, groomed and teeth expertly brushed… while you hobble behind them in yesterday’s pants and clothing, smelling slightly ‘funky’, with your hair resembling roadkill and looking mostly like a slightly squinty-eyed tramp who latched onto some kids as they walked past the skip you slept in…. (or something)
- Attempt to befriend the nice-looking, beautifully-groomed, lip-gloss-wearing mums with your wit, charm and charisma… then realise they think you’re a squinty-eyed-tramp who latched onto some kids as they walked past the skip you slept in, and head for the panicky looking women wearing baseball caps and dishing out Cheerios direct from the box just round the corner from the school…
- Be sure to take your toddler along with you to start your day off in a complete sweaty-shouty-shit-storm. And really relish in the enjoyment of running around the playground like a lunatic trying to catch them without taking out any 5-yr olds with your flailing limbs.
- To really mix things up, let everyone including the toddler go to school on their bikes… AHAHHHHAAAAHHHHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. (that was sound of me simultaneously laughing whist having a nervous breakdown as I remember what it’s like to carry everyone’s bikes home with a toddler balanced on my hip using my left areola as a handle, crying.)
- Write down EVERYTHING. Every dress-up day, every bring-something-in-day, trip-day, performance-day… stick it on the fridge, in your diary, on your phone, on post-it notes around the kitchen, employ a selection of well-trained carrier pigeons to deliver you telegrams the night before, and staple final reminders to the INSIDES OF YOUR ACTUAL EYE-LIDS before you go to sleep at night… and then still completely forget and be “that mum” who has to go to Sainsbury’s at 7am in the morning to buy a Gruffalo costume, 40 cupcakes and a bottle of Sipsmith. You won’t be alone… There’ll be knowing nods from all the other parents doing the same thing…
- After a few months you’ll form a WhatsApp group with other parents so you can avoid as many of the last minute supermarket dashes as possible… and can instead spend the night before Roald Dahl Day drinking gin and deciding to send her in with a peach and a little sign. (again.)
- There is nothing like the school run this make you realise that you own NO nice casual-clothing. AT ALL. Your wardrobe goes from one extreme to the other – and mostly consists of nursing tops from 2012, slogan jumpers, and leggings with the crotch worn out (that you keep promising to throw away before deciding they’ve got “one more wear in them”. As a section of vagina pokes out through the gusset as you pull them on…), through to 75 dresses you’ve only worn once to various weddings, birthdays, Bah Mitsvahs and christenings. And your wedding dress. You’ve seen the other mums – YOU KNOW IT CAN BE DONE. But every time you go to Topshop and actually manage to find something you like, a 15-yr old wearing a bralette picks up the same thing and you leave crying…
- Tidying up is now reserved for ‘play-date days’. You’ll hoover, plump cushions and lint-roller the crap out of the bastard sofa just to give off the impression you live inside an actual Pinterest board for the parents as they collect them… when really you spend most days enjoying the novelty of having a poo by yourself, eating pepperamis and waiting until dinner time to clear away the morning’s breakfast stuff… (along with yesterday’s.)
- You’ll turn up to Parent’s Evening with your hair done, stain-free clothing and full make-up on feeling like a MOTHER-CHUFFING UNICORN… and no-one will recognise you.
- And finally… You’ll be so bored of hearing your own voice repeat – ‘SHOES! TEETH! COAT! NO YOU DON’T HAVE TIME FOR A POO!’ – over and over again every morning, that you will soon consider shoe-less, coat-less home-schooling on the toilet whilst you beat yourself in the face with a toothbrush.