Let’s face it, mornings with kids can be hard work, so we at PF have put together our definitive guide to making them simple, you’re welcome!
Start your day by going back to basics, no more “3 different kinds of cereal for 3 different kids and chicken nuggets for number 4”, everybody has porridge, no choice. Admittedly this will mean child 1 and 2 don’t actually eat breakfast, child 3 will scream blue murder until something, anything, else is proffered and child 4 will quietly be googling social services. You will also recall how little you like porridge yourself and have to grin through slimy, pasty, gruel.
With your healthy breakfast behind you, your darlings will be happily preparing for their day ahead. You can assist them by; making packed lunches, packing school bags, faking their handwriting to finish homework, finding shoes, finding coats, (neither of which should have to be found), brushing their hair, giving them money for whatever charity the school is supporting that day and creating some sort of magical costume out of a cereal box and an old pair of knickers. All whilst they prepare for their day by crying over odd socks, shouting at each other for existing in the same space, demanding food and feeling vaguely ill. Your assistance is the only thing that facilitates the smooth running of a morning, on no account go renegade and ask the children to do something for themselves.
Only ask once. This is key to a simple morning, only ask a child where their shoes are once, repeating yourself is pointless, they won’t listen to any of the polite, motherly tones you employ so only ask once, at the top of your voice with as much rage as you can muster, and flick them the bird as they walk away just to make yourself feel complete.
By now you will have your children spit-spot and lined up at the door ready to go. Quite simply you should just get in the car and go, one must learn to ignore the pleas of “I’ve forgotten my….homework, shoes, sports kit, my eye hurts, I’ve got food tech today and I need Tupperware” etc. Once you have mastered the art of ignoring them your morning will run like clockwork, the rest of your day may be spent driving back and forth to various schools and sports establishments to deliver everything that was forgotten but you’ll have had a lovely morning.
In the car you will lose your shit. All of your children will argue about who sits where, even though they sit in the same seats every single day. All of your children will argue about who has the most challenging day ahead. All of your children will argue about who did the biggest poo. Someone will cut you up on the roundabout. You have two choices here, let road rage take over and swear, at full volume, scaring your darlings into blissful silence OR put the cd player on full blast and sing along like a lunatic. This will simplify the endless complaining and allow you to have a relatively calm journey to school.
Lastly ensure that everyone pretends to be normal at the school gates, blow kisses so you don’t have to make physical contact with the grubby little darlings, wave, wait until they’re out of sight and then and only then get the hip flask out and mentally shriek with joy. If you absolutely have to go into a classroom or see a teacher, take the hip flask out before and after, you deserve it.
Shona Moss for PF Magazine