Hellen Wallen: HuffPost Parents
I can’t quite believe that my ‘baby’ is starting school.
I mean… I believe it; as in I know it’s happening. But I’m a bizarre mix of excited, terrified, guilty and sad all at the same time… Which is kind of parenting summed up to be fair… That and the flappy fanjo, never having nice things and eating cold, congealed fish-fingers over the kitchen bin washed down with a glass of wine whilst crying, and other such glamour…
So, if like me your baby has only days left as a ‘pre-schooler’ then feel free to crack open a bottle and weep along with me… here’s my Ten Ways to Know You Have a Child Starting School this September:
- You’ve become a #timehoptwat… And since around mid August haven’t been able to stop re-posting pictures of your child as a baby whilst bursting into sporadic sobs… Any pictures that haven’t received an adequate amount of interaction you’ve begun tagging. Adding weepy emoticons. And #wankyhashtags.
- You’ve bought the new school shoes. And cried when you came out of Clarks. Mainly because you can’t believe how adorable they look in school shoes, and also because they cost more than your actual adult shoes. You’ve taken a picture and posted them on Facebook in case anyone doesn’t know what school shoes for 4-year olds look like. Phew.
- You’ve arranged a special day out… Or as I like to call it ‘GUILT-DAY’… Where you plan to make up for last four or so years of occasionally sloppy, slightly hungover iParenting, by buying them anything they want whilst resisting the urge to look at your phone for an entire day and feeding them cake.
- Your main concerns about them starting school are the fact that they don’t seem to have quite grasped the concept that no-one there is going to wipe their arse for them after a poo. NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES YOU EXPLAIN THIS. (As you wipe their arse. Shit.)
- Your child practically ran out of door on their last day of nursery. You totally lost your shit. And hugged the reception staff for an uncomfortably long time whilst snot came out of your face.
- You lose it every time you iron another label in. And re-read their learning journey weeping into a glass (bottle) of Pinot Grigio (gin).
- You’ve begun considering another baby… It was the plimsols than finally pushed you over the edge. Your husband has starting avoiding eye contact…
- Out of principle you will continue shopping on the 0-5 section at Next until such a time as you are ready to accept your child is growing up. You know… When they’re about 30.
- After weeks of careful planning, thought, care and attention, you’re now officially ready for the perfect ‘first day at school new uniform’ photo in front of the front door… Because no-one else on social media will be doing that… Nope.
- It’s slowly dawning on you that crusty-leggings-20-minute-late-I-forgot-their-bag/lunch/shoes-nursery-mummy will have to seriously get her shit together in just a few days… IT’S TIME TO WAVE HER GOODBYE. And say hello to permission-slip-signing-PE-kit-remembering-I-ACTUALLY-BRUSHED-MY-HAIR-THIS-MORNING-MUMMY… *drinks more wine and goes to the happy crusty legging place again* *opens timehop*