Honest Motherhood: Back to School 

It’s that time of year once again. Uniforms ready, ludicrously expensive Clarks visit out the way, stationery painstakingly labelled. Maia started Year 3 last week at her new junior school, where in her words: “The older years are just there at play time minding their own business, they don’t really take any notice of us.” Good good. She was not happy about leaving her infant school (which stops at Year 2), despite the fact she is surrounded by pretty much the exact same children at her new school. They were however mixed around class-wise, and Maia was at first devastated to learn most of her close friends were in other classes. 
“I’ve got no one!!”
“You’ll see them at break time and you’ll make new friends! And anyway class time is for learning, you’ll be focused on your work!” 
Four days in and this has thankfully come to be true. She is adjusting well to all the newness and I am attempting to adjust our entire household’s daily routine. 

We got into quite a relaxed routine over the Summer break, in that, there was really no routine. The lack of order could be described as hellish by many, probably more productive parents. Maia would be in bed any time from 8pm-10pm, Joel and I would then stay up talking till gone 11pm, weary yet determined to have some child-free-time whilst regretting not having them in bed two hours earlier. 
Of course I had big plans for September, life-changing ones, everything was going to be different.I’d envisioned a new routine where we ate dinner at 5:30pm and had the children in bed and asleep by 7:30pm, 8pm at the latest. (We were going to be conventional for a change..). – A simple shift leaving over two hours to do absolutely anything we wanted. In my case attempt to write, snack incessantly, reorder my to-do list, attack my to-do list, chat with Joel about how great the new routine is whilst he stacks the dishwasher, complain I never have time to write. We might even get to watch something together because hey, we have the energy, and it’s only 8:30pm!(We have miraculously managed the earlier bed time the last few nights, though quite what we did with our sacred two hours I cannot recall.)

Obviously the flip side of having time alone in the evenings is rising earlier. I’d visualised a 6:30am wakeup, in order to fit in a quick run before the start of the day. I think this whenever I go for a run (about once a fortnight) and remember how good it feels. “I want to feel like this every single day. I am going to make this happen. It’s all about the early mornings…”. I announce my intentions and Joel nods along, knowing this is as likely as us visiting Mars. My excuse for not having manifested these fitness ideals yet, is Leo. He is a small but powerful being who still wakes me up in the night and shows no signs of stopping. Because I am stubborn and the idea of sleep training jolts both my heart and stomach, I live in a perpetual state of partly self-inflicted exhaustion. Every minute of sleep counts, so the invigorating but unnecessarily early morning gallops can wait. 
Thankfully, the school run only requires us to bounce out of bed at 7am, which for most parents of young children is a generous lie in. Old routine or new, we’re both equally as delirious.


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