7 things I’ve learnt since my daughter started school

So the girlchild is now a pupil. The home visit was fine (read the post) despite the four-day delay due to the silent knocking teacher. So that was fun keeping the house immaculate for the best part of a week.

The initial period of settling in seems to be done and sorted. Days and days of a morning here, afternoon there, while Mr MotherFudger and I had to rearrange our lives is over. I blahed after the first drop off. The girlchild didn’t. The initial motivation, by me, to plait her hair has passed, but we’re ironing her clothes for fear of the wrath of my mother who told me off before term had even begun. Actually Mr MF is doing the ironing as I do most other things, so have dug my heels in about that one.

It’s a crazy world this school thang, and a learning process for all of us:

  1. The school system pretty much hasn’t moved on from the Victorian era.

Mornings, half days, sit and see sessions, assemblies – firstly they seem to assume one parent doesn’t work. Hello – it’s 2015. I had an invite to an assembly 2 days later. On Monday week there’s some kind of meeting at 2pm on a Monday I need to go to. Now luckily I don’t work on a Monday – but oh, hang on, other children aren’t invited. Great, so erm, they’ve made it easy to attend that one!

And aside from that – what is with the paperwork? Erm hello 2015 school system – what about social media, what about updating your website, what about text alerts, what about not photocopying information and handing it out on A4 sheets. We’ve all moved on. Let’s embrace technology together.

2. Your child imparts “nothing”

Oh how I looked forward to the little anecdotes we’d share about her day:

Me: “What have you done today darling?”
Girlchild: “Nothing”

Me: “Who did you play with today?”
Girlchild: “No-one”
*Heart breaks as I visualise her sobbing in the corner*

Me: “Did you do drawing today?”
Girlchild: “No”

But then she’ll reveal random snippets of information like “Aspen was sick today”. I don’t even know who Aspen is?

Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah. It’s so frustrating. I’ve had a chat with the teacher – apparently she plays with everyone, she’s settled and involved. She isn’t doing “nothing”. It’s OK. Mummy panic averted.

crumble

3. Having said she says “nothing”, we have had plenty of discussion about the lunch menu.

Talking about what the option is – they still have arctic roll, insane – dominates the morning, the evening, the post-school discussion. Apparently she’s refused to eat broccoli her entire life because mine is awful – awful being still in a floret form opposed to over cooked slush which she prefers.

The food is the only time the Victorian era of school life is a positive – they have crumble, custard, proper big desserts. Jeeeezzz, my kids are lucky if they have dessert once a month. We’ve been palming them off with a yoghurt as a great end to dinner. She thinks it’s Christmas every school day – although this has incited the “what’s for dessert?” question a lot. Weekends have been dominated making crumbles. Mr MF has found his nirvana. We’re boosting Ambrosia’s sales right now. It’s ridic.

4. I’m a total snob.

Fuck I hate myself. *hangs head in shame*

I actually found myself saying to another mum the other day “she would’ve eaten the salmon, but it had breadcrumbs on it and she thought it was fish fingers.” Feel free to punch me next time you see me.

bike

5. The school run dominates

I naively thought on my non-working days (please note NOT days off as I still have the wild thing of a toddler to look after), I would have some time to do stuff that doesn’t revolve around cleaning, cooking, washing, organising.

Apparently not. From the moment I wake it’s like I have a cattle prod up my arse to get showered, dressed, put some form of makeup on my ever-ageing face, sort the kids out while I shout at Mr MF to chip in, before we then have some kind of ‘debate’ about shoes/coats/not watching iPads/how knickers are an essential item of clothing/that I actually do have to clean the crap from that nappy/that we aren’t taking 4,000 Paw Patrol figurines on the school run. Then we march up to the school in some kind of urgency I’ve never had before in my life.

I fit in a bit of gossiping with other mums (natch) before marching home, and then blink, look at the clock before I find myself having to have similar conversations with the boychild about having to stomp back to school to collect the girlchild. Fucking exhausting.

diary 2

6. Your child starts school – you become their PA

Not a day seems to go past without several pieces of paperwork in the girlchild’s bag. Daily communication books, notes about parents’ evenings, clothes collections, assemblies, meetings you have to attend during a working day (see point 1), cake sales, the Christmas play, water bottles needed, blah blah blah. It’s never ending.

The other day I (AGAIN) sat down and got the diary out, put in dates, highlighted sheets with important dates while Mr MF cackled next to me basking in the glory of watching some shite on his phone. Because also this is apparently the deal – my vagina automatically means I pick up the load on the paperwork.

I missed that memo.

7. You miss them so much

Before my daughter started school we had the week off and had loads of time together. I realised what a great age she’s at – she’s so capable now and my little mate. We can do stuff together. I love it. And I felt so sad that I have to send her off to school.

I know there’s weekends, but I really miss her.

Despite my usual tongue in cheek blogging on parenting, I shall end on a positive though – two positives – just in case my children ever read this. The girlchild did say this week pretty much the cutest thing ever. She said “Mumma, you are the bestest loveliest Mumma in the whole wide world. You are so much better than Santa.” LOVE LOVE LOVE.

AND a friend who visited with her newborn last week texted me and told me what wonderful children I have, how polite, sweet, happy and kind they are and how they want to parent like us and hope their baby grows up like my children. I always feel proud, but felt super proud of my little duo. You know who you are and you made my year – nicest thing ever, because in this crazy path of parenting, the mum guilt, the struggle, the daily battles are all so worth it.

Apols for Oprah end there.

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One thought on “7 things I’ve learnt since my daughter started school

  1. Aaaah – left me with a teary eye! My own loveliest baby girl has grown up to become such a wonderful Mumma – all my love from Nanafudger xxx

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