“Go home mummy. Just go!” “Why am I not allowed to come?” “Because both of you here is just embarrassing.”. And so it begins, aged four, and the small child is already mortified by my very presence. LSB and I have united forces to walk the small child down the road together, as it’s her first day of school. Couldn’t come soon enough I can tell you. She slept poorly, with a tickly cough, so we were all up in the night tending to her, then from 7.15 onwards we’ve been listening to her complaints. “I’m getting dressed now!” “Oh please don’t,” I implore. “You don’t go in until 10 O’clock.” “Don’t care! And I DON’T WANT BREAKFAST!” She refuses to let any liquid pass her lips as she is “BORED WITH DRINKING.” (so am I to be honest after that holiday but if this continues I’ll be back on the grog by tonight.) “I don’t like this school bag, it’s ho-ble (horrible) why did you choose it for me?” “My lunch box is too small. You always get me ho-ble things.” Exasperated sigh from the mother. “Will I just go back to the mummy shop. “NO.” “Why not? I’m clearly getting it all kinds of wrong here.” “Dad needs you.” “Really?” Well at least someone does.
The grumbling continues despite the pair of us pointing at cats and dogs and blackbirds, usual items of interest to her. “Where did we get her from?” I ask LSB. “Must I answer that?” he replies. Fair enough. My P1 photograph shows a small child with a similar mutinous expression.
I feel sorely tempted to say fine then, clear away off, but I don’t. And as we approach the school gates, a wee hand slips in to mine. I look to see if she’s taken LSB’s too, for if that were the case she’d be instigating that we give her a swing, but she hasn’t. Lovely Mrs T is waiting at the door, and two of her friends are playing together at a table as she goes in. “I am so, so glad to see the back of that one,” I tell her teacher, who having had the older one last year, is well used to my ill-humour, “but I have it on good authority that she’ll be better for you.” “Course she will,” smiles Mrs T with a confidence I don’t entirely share. As we turn to go both wee friends wave enthusiastically, and when we take a final peek through the window, one even pushes her nose against the glass. Ours approaches too and we wait expectantly for a smile. Then she grits her teeth into a sort of snarl. shaking her head like a bulldog with a chew toy. “And we’ve to be back here at 11.45,” I sigh to LSB. “Let’s go and get ploughed into some caffeine.”
PS. Small child came out of school pleased as punch, only raging because she’s not in again until Monday, since she enjoyed it so much. I too, am irked that she’s not in until Monday. Anyone want her tomorrow? 😉