My ‘baby’ started big school 2 weeks ago. By the time my little Miss walked through the school door for the first time she was so excited I thought she might burst. Excellent. Our constant up beat tones with face set to ‘smile’ mode for the last 2 months has paid off: you would have easily confused the morning of The First Day with that of Christmas. Possibly we had overrated this new way of life?! Anyhow it did the trick- who would have thought it possible to get so hyperactive over putting on a grey pinafore.
What I hadn’t properly anticipated was the impact of having a child at school on our general family life, and me: This school lark is actually quite a lot of work for us Mumas, teamed up with a whole new set of worries.
I’m not the most efficient laundry maid, so to overcome this and ensure Darcie doesn’t arrive at school in her Frozen costume, I bought a shit load of uniform. I mean it, I’m pretty sure I could bugger of to Spain for 3 weeks and there would still be uniform hanging up to wear. (Not that this was my criteria, obviously…)
There is of course a little problem with all of that uniform: sodding labelling it.
We have been under strict instructions to label EVERYTHING. I’m only surprised I didn’t have to Brand Darcie an ID number onto the back of her neck. Grateful for small mercies.
Major panic, the last thing I sewed was a felt frog in year 3. I will be an embarrassment! Can all the other Mumas really sew?! There must be a short cut. Cue the trusted Indelible pen, and some (rather crap) iron on labels. Which after the first round of washing have all begun peeling off.
This was the first Big School Muma test and I do feel I haven’t really earned a pass yet.
Labelling is small fry when compared to our next assignment:
“The children who do best are those that are helped at home” said the kindly reception teacher.
It makes sense, sure, I get it. So when the book bag made its appearance right in time for the weekend we were able to give reading a go…
Reading, seriously?! Our first session went something like this:
“Sound out the words on the front of the book Darcie, that’s the title”
“Excellent, well done, amazing! So what does the word say?”
Repeat this about 5 or 6 times.
I’m not the most patient of people, I was actually biting my lip not the scream “RAT! Its clearly RAT!”
We had a whole book to get through. I reached for the chilled Sav Blanc. It’s going to be a long 7 years.
I’m desperately trying to keep very organised now I am a fully Fledged Big School Muma. God forbid we arrive late and risk an ‘L’ in the register. Or I forget the water proofs, water bottle, or book bag – having remembered to write in the book diary, complete with the slips that have been emailed via the phenomena that is Parentmail (basically emails on heat), managed to persuade printer to actually print fairly straight on the bit of paper I found with only a small wax crayon master piece on it, along with money for a trip or sponsored blindfolded 8 legged race. It is frankly a blessing that I have named the school canteen a café, and therefore Darcie is quite happy to eat the free school dinner. Madam gets to feel like a lady that lunches, and I am off the hook from thinking up Healthy options of carrots and dust to send her in with.
Last night, for the first time in 5 years I got The Sunday Evening Feeling. That feeling of anticipation and slight dread for the week ahead. It is Darcie’s first week of being at school full time. Which means it’s my first week of being alone with ToddlerMonster for a 6 hour stretch, 5 days in a row! I’ve lost the baby that can speak to me, and laugh with me, and give me a hand with entertaining the ToddlerMonster. In her place I have the child who repeats the 4 words she knows on a loop. Practise makes perfect right?!
I will miss my cheeky young lady, and I hope she is happy making new friends, and playing with her old ones. I hope she doesn’t drop her lunch tray, or fall over, or feel lonely, or loose a shoe. (esp not loosing a shoe: Mr Clarkes must be on his post September tropical holidays after selling all of those T-bars.)
The up side is that for the first time in 5 years I will also get that Friday Feeling too. Hubster has altered his working pattern and so for the first time ever we will be altogether for the whole weekend. Making the most of those 2 non-school days where the parentals get to influence that impressionable mind!
I wonder how long it will be before I’m willing Monday morning to come round again…