I’m back again! So happy to be back doing this; hopefully I’ll keep up the motivation to do it properly. I’ve had plenty of changes in my life since I last posted here…not least the fact we now have a man in our lives! At some point I’ll fill in the gaps. Here, though, is my account of this morning. I’d like to say it is not a typical morning…but that might not be altogether true.
Alarm goes. Its the boyfriend’s; can ignore. Boyfriend remarkably slow at turning alarm off. Rolls towards me for a ‘morning snuggle’. Morning snuggle reminiscent of grieving man clutching still-warm corpse. Fall into deep sleep.
Undisclosed amount of time later, second alarm goes. Thank goodness for that extra snooze, ey? Made all the difference. Boyfriend takes his time turning off the alarm and heads to the bathroom. Do not check time. Know that time will feature a 5 in the hour column. Possibly a 6; just; but either way, this time does not concern me. Fall back to sleep.
Boyfriend sits on bed to put on socks. Oh shit, I’ve missed smiling and squinting at him naked. Must be more tired than usual. More effort required this evening. Sometimes I sit up at this point and cuddle him from behind. Can’t quite bring self to do so. Shimmy a bit closer and flop arm across thigh instead. Say ‘you look great‘ whilst keeping eyes closed. Tie goes on. Aware of movement but do not peep a look at tie. Realise also no idea of shirt colour. Face comes towards mine for a kiss. Open eyes a little. Bye. Boyfriend says I look sexy in bed; actually means bed looks sexy and sleep looks sexy, and he hates me a bit for having both to myself.
Boyfriend goes downstairs. Should go after him, see him out. But his expectations not that high. Maybe tomorrow. Hear fridge opening, packed lunch out. When and how does that box land in my fridge? I’ll start making his lunch soon. But he might have specific needs in his lunch. Hmm. I’ll let him keep that freedom. Must remember to slip in the occasional note though. Before bed, obviously. Front door closes quietly -always thinking of Sam. Must be better girlfriend soon; balance it out. Soon. Fall into deep sleep.
Alarm goes. 7.25am. Formerly thought of as my emergency alarm if Sam hadn’t already woken me up. Hit snooze. Numerous snooze alarms follow. This is ok; we have mornings down to a fine art. Is Sam not awake yet? Never mind. More snoozes. 8am. Should get up. Oh yes, hair in desperate need of wash. Never mind – dry shampoo. Can of dry shampoo empty. Third time I’ve discovered this; must buy more. Will throw away then. Hair looks so greasy. Deodorant? No, that was a mistake last time. Never mind, au naturel. Wash face. Sam wakes. Should face wash have taken 10 minutes? Sam too tired to get out of bed. Know not to open curtains. Have lengthy toilet visit. Oh dear, it’s late now. Get Sam out of bed. He’s cold. Can I pretend to be a tumble dryer? Joggle him about a bit. Dressing gown on. Carry downstairs. ‘But I wanted to do bumpety bump’. Next time Sam. Deposit in chair. Toast or cereal? Toast or cereal Sam? ‘Cereal.’ Phew. Here’s your cereal. Washing machine full. Sudden flash of dread. Empty out wet washing onto dirty floor. Yes, all Sam’s uniform is in there. All of it. Gosh I am incompetent. Keep eating, Sam. Heating on. Jumper and trousers on radiator. What am I doing? They’ll never dry in time. Keep eating, Sam. Go upstairs, retrieve hair dryer. Back downstairs. Lay shirt next to kettle. Hair dryer on. Remember teddy bear with melted fur. Use caution. Keep eating, Sam. Shirt just about dry. Collar won’t be against his skin. That’s fine. Have you finished, Sam?
Upstairs, brush teeth. Check jumper. Oh dear. Plug in dehumidifier. Sandwich jumper between radiator and dehumidifier. Dehumidifier does not feature ‘Do not cover’ warning. Why? Surely dangerous. Can’t believe this use is not considered common enough to warrant warning. Get self dressed. Face too spotty to neglect makeup. Do not look at greasy hair. Foundation on. Lipstick on. Mascara on. Oh dear, smudged lipstick. Never mind.
Sam’s room. Pyjamas off. Leave bed socks on – essential time saver. Pants on. Where are those giant trousers? Here. Roll legs up. Secure with safety pins. Weapon? …It’s only three hours. Sam, see these? These are dangerous. Don’t fiddle with them. Three hours only, he’ll be fine. I said don’t fiddle with them. Trousers on. Oh dear, still too big. Roll up at top. Perfect. Now where’s that shirt? Of course, downstairs. Run get shirt. Let’s put this on. No, you are going to school. I know you’re tired. We’ll have a restful afternoon.
Downstairs. Shoe on. Where’s that other shoe? Honestly Sam, where’s the other shoe? Panic. Eye up wellies. Sunny outside. Slippers? No hang on, here it is, inside my boot. Put other shoe on. Coat on. My shoes and coat on. We’re on a roll now! Grab buggy. Out the door, Sam. Lock door. Ahh schoolbag. Unlock door. Find schoolbag. Painting inside. Aww lovely; look at that. No don’t Vicki, we’re late. Empty water bottle, swish with water, refill. Done. Yes we’re out! Lock door. Hmm it’s very cold, jumper unlikely to dry on buggy. Unlock door. Run upstairs, get hoody. Outside, lock door. The heating’s on. But we’re late! It’ll only take two seconds. Unlock door. Turn off heating. Lock door. RUN! Glance at reflection in window. Mistake. Out through gate.
Check time. 8.48. So much better than expected! We can do this! Google maps say 16 minutes…but it wasn’t calculated by someone who is always late who hates being late. Let’s go! Puff pant puff pant. Damn it, these shoes are a hindrance. Take them off? People already staring. Keep them on. ‘Good morning!’ Old man on mobility scooter, in cycle lane next to us. ‘Race you!’ Ha, you underestimate me old man. I’ll easily win. Neck and neck. What?! Oh no, he’s pulling ahead. ‘Come on Mummy!’ Oh no, I can’t believe it. Come onnn! Gosh my calves hurt. ‘Faster Mummy!’ Gap widening. How disheartening. This is just like cross country races. Old man turns corner. Thank goodness, open field ahead. Keep up the pace though. Do it for the glory. Check time; we’re doing well. Nearly there. Purple Hair Lady about to cross road towards us. Smile, say hello. Overlook fact she bought me a coffee and knows my whole life story. Do not wait. Must be late – Purple Hair Lady scared of crowds and is always purposefully late. Nearing school now. Why are there still people outside? Oh my gosh we made it in time! Teacher opens gate as we reach back of crowd. Done! Not late.
Park buggy. Get out now Sam. I said get out. ‘But it’s too far to walk, my legs will hurt.’ Sam you usually cycle to school, ten metres of walking will be fine. ‘No!’ Is it ok that I drag him out? ‘Noooo!’ Crying. Come on Sam. ‘No!’ Is it ok that I drag him to the door? I’m holding onto his hand; it’s fine, parents do this all the time. Doesn’t stop them glaring though. Come on now Sam. Bag and coat hung up. ‘I’m too tired!’ Still crying. Don’t be sad sweetie, I’ll be back in a little while. ‘I don’t. Want. To go. To. Nursery!’ We’re here now Sam. I’ll be back soon. Still crying. Sam, you sound like you’ll be too tired to play when we get home. If you don’t stop making a fuss we won’t be able to do any playing in the afternoon. End of tears. Come on, let’s tell your teacher how silly Mummy was with your uniform. Not Sam’s teacher. Someone else. Sam’s teacher was already a stand-in for Sam’s real teacher. Do not know this lady. Not the best day for this. Explain uniform debacle. Sam sits next to his friend. Looks fine. I go. Tell another teacher about uniform on way out. Phew what a morning.
Golly, was it this cold on the way here? Decide to walk home as quickly as possible; hair too greasy to socialise on journey. Funny how much longer it takes to get home, despite being downhill and without pushing along a child-filled buggy. Get a beep from a van. Fan of greasy hair? Clothes astonishingly non slutty today. Though perhaps dress tucked into leggings? Hm slightly. Act like I meant to. Chin up, confident walk. Nailed it. Walk past Polish car washers. All stop and stare. Daily routine. Wish I didn’t have to walk past them four times a day. Twenty times each week. Oh well. Nearly at home now. On own road. Pass old man. ‘That’s a very quiet baby!’ Yes, the best sort. Few steps on, pass old lady. Old lady shrieks with laughter. ‘There isn’t even a baby in there!’ Chuckle to self.
Back home. Unlock door. See envelope face down on mat. PO Box from Leicester – something from the bank. Know that I won’t even pick it up ’til later. Put kettle on. Take washing outside. Fantasise about eating same breakfast Sam had earlier. Hang washing up. Back inside. Kettle not on. Flick switch up and down. Up and down. NOOOO! Major panic. Must have tea. Life will fall apart without tea. What is wrong with kettle? Ah, of course. Kettle unplugged to make way for hair dryer. Plug kettle in. Ahh that sound is so comforting. Now for cereal. Uh oh, Sam’s bowl is barely touched. Did I just send him off to school on an empty stomach? Am definitely going to have to step up as a parent. Eat Sam’s cereal. Brew tea. Now what? I have so much to do. Don’t want to do it. What shall I do instead? Write this! Start writing. This is fun! Drink tea. Brew another tea. Gosh this really is fun. Finish tea. Oh dear, I’m going to be late. Desperate for a wee. My goodness, how can two cups of tea produce so much wee? Quite luxurious though, sitting here on my own. No wait, I’m late! Right, let’s go. No time to get bike out. Buggy it is.
Pace it to school. Hello car washers again. What? Parents coming out with kids? Hadn’t realised I was so late. Damn it! Never mind, small queue inside – no one would have noticed. Sam elated to see me. Feel swoop in stomach region. God I love that boy. Such a great moment each day. Stand-in stand-in teacher says Sam has been brilliant – no grumpiness. Can’t see safety pin stab wounds on him or anyone else. Phew, have made it through another morning without being found out as a bad parent. Well, not terrible anyway.