The School ‘Run’

The School ‘Run’


7.33am: Eurgh. What day is it? Is it a weekend day? oh please, god of sleep and all that is good, let it be a weekend day. Damn, it’s Tuesday. Bloody Tuesday. I want to go back to sleep, I really, really do. Oh what I’d do for a lie in! Just a little one, a teeny tiny lie in, that’s all I need, it’s not much to ask, surely? How much trouble do you get into for not sending your kid to school because you need a lie in? Can you get a doctor’s note for a lie in? You should be able to do that, they should prescribe a lie in every now and then for all mothers. If I was Prime Minister I would make that a Thing. Do they throw you into prison for not getting your kids into school on time? Shit, I couldn’t take prison. Too much routine. Although thinking about it, the uninterrupted sleep would be amazing. Well, I better get up. Oh, my back! Shit, I’m getting old. 


7.37am: “Besso Beans, come on now! Time to get up. Don’t roll back over, little love. I can see you under the duvet you know, and keeping your eyes closed doesn’t make you invisible. Maggie, are you getting up? Oh, well done, good girl. Don’t jump on Bess. Oh no, oh Bess! Was that your head? Are you okay? Maggie, come on now, that’s it, say sorry. Well done, that was a lovely sorry, although maybe a bit squeezy. Don’t cry Bess, she didn’t mean it. Are you feeling a bit grumpy? Oh dear, maybe we should have an earlier bedtime tonight? That’s got to be a record though, a sorry within five minutes of getting up, right?”

7.46am: “Bess, grab some pants out of your drawer. Yes, top drawer. No, not that one, the top one. TOP. That’s it. And some socks. No darling, those are tights. And Maggie’s, not yours. No, no, not those socks, the white ones. WHITE darling! School socks! Not weekend socks. Yes, there is a difference. Don’t roll your eyes at me please, that’s very rude to do to your Mummy. Especially a tired and ratty Mummy.”


7.53am: “Let’s get the breakfast things out please! Bowls, cups, cereal – no Bess, I’m not making porridge now. That’s it Maggie, put the cups on the table. No! Don’t stack them, it’s not a tower. We haven’t got time for towers, it’s a school morning. Leave the cat alone Maggie, you can’t build a cup tower on her back. No, she doesn’t like it. Really. Don’t cry – no, please, don’t cry, there’s really no need to cry over the cat not wanting to be a cup tower. Okay, everyone’s okay, let’s just get the Coco Pops out and we can have something to eat. That’s it, start getting the stuff out of the cupboard – I’m going for a wee.”

7.55am: “Yes, that’s my wee. No, you can’t touch it Maggie, it’s wee. Can I just have a wee in peace? Can you get the things out for breakfast and I’ll finish my wee? OH. Er, thanks, but I can wipe my own bottom next time.”

7.59am: “BREAKFAST THINGS! GET THE BREAKFAST THINGS OUT! How many times do I have to ask? Stop singing Frozen please! No, Bess you aren’t Elsa. Or if you are, then you are ‘Elsa-getting-the-breakfast-things-out’, yes I know, boring, but even Princesses need to help out.”

8.04am: “Maggie, don’t have a meltdown. I have to open the packet, you are too little. Can you get up from the floor? Come on, get up from the floor. Don’t say ‘no, no. no’. Thrashing around on the floor furiously isn’t going to make me reseal the packet. Please stop dragging yourself around, there’s fluff and all sorts down there. Yes, thank you Bess, I know I need to clean it, I’m delighted you have pointed that out. Maggie, do you want milk with your cereal today or not?”

8.10am: “Maggie, have you finished being an angry worm on the floor yet?”

8.11am: “Well done Bess. Yes, that’s lovely, just pop the bowl onto the side. I’m just going… OH BLOODY HELL! Oh god, oh flipping nora, there’s milk everywhere. The one time you don’t do your father’s drinking-the-milk-out-of-the-bowl trick, Christ on a bloody bike. Pass the tea towel – no, that’s not a tea towel, that’s your sister’s top, don’t use that! Oh you did. GREAT. Put it in the washing basket please, we need the kitchen towel. Where’s the kitchen towel? Why does your father move it into a new place every flipping day? That’s it, thank you. Goodness, it’s everywhere. It’s all up the wall! HOW does a mouthful of milk go that far for god’s sake? It’s okay, I know, oh – your bottom lip is wobbling. Don’t let your lip wobble, it’s alright, it’s alright, Mummy is cleaning it up – look! Okay. Let’s just go and do our teeth. Come on, to the bathroom please. Bathroom. Yes – teeth. TEETH. Maggie, get up off the floor.”

8.22am: “Open your mouth. OPEN. YOUR. MOUTH. I can’t brush your teeth if you don’t open your mouth! No me first, then you can have a go. Don’t wrestle the toothbrush off me Bess! Ow! That’s my finger! Argh, you just bent it backwards, goodness that hurts. Please stand still! No, you aren’t the lost member of Little Mix. We aren’t singing, we are brushing teeth, you can’t sing and brush at the same time. THANK YOU, it’s a toothbrush, not a microphone. You need to brush your teeth. That’s it! OPEN WIDE! No, wider, I can’t get… don’t bite the brush! For god’s sake. That’s it, let me just get in… with the brush… and brush… and that’s the way we do it, nice clean teeth, that’s it, so shiny, lovely and white, well done, just a few more brushes, I’ll just rinse the brush, and then… NO! Come BACK. NOW Bess! MAGGIE. GET UP OFF THE BLEDDY FLOOR!”

8.30am: “Ok, 20 minutes until we need to leave the house. Did you hear me?”

8:32am: “Stop wrestling! You aren’t wrestlers! Oh I see, you are playing ‘Mums and Sweethearts’, I didn’t realise, it looked a bit rough and like you had her in a headlock, Bess. Come on, we need to get dressed. Pants on, socks on, shirt on. You can do it darling, you need to be able to do it for P.E. at school or you’ll be stuck and not able to join in if you can’t. MAGGIE STOP RUNNING AROUND THE COFFEE TABLE! Okay, it’s okay. I know – I know you are hungry but you’ll have to wait until we get back from school now. Yes, that’s right, but I’m afraid you were an angry worm for too long. Come on, let me change your nappy, good girl. Lie down and I’ll… Come back! Come back here! Lie down, seriously, I’m not playing, look this is my serious face, not my happy face. Can you see? I’m not laughing, I know it looks like I’m laughing, but I’m not really. I’m not chasing you, I’m NOT chasing you Maggie. Argh! I just need you to LIE DOWN. That’s it. That’s right, okay, great. Hang on.. BESS! WHY AREN’T YOU GETTING DRESSED?”

8:43am: WHERE IS YOUR SKIRT? WHERE IS YOUR BLOODY SKIRT? It was here only two seconds ago, for gods sake! It can’t have disappeared, where has it gone? Come on, look for it! Don’t act helpless, you can’t go to school in your pants, can you? Don’t be silly, the fairies don’t make uniform disappear. But where is it? Oh for the love, WHY IS IT ON THE CAT?”

8.46am: “Stand STILL! Don’t pull away, it’ll make it hurt more. You said ‘french plait’! I’m doing a french plait! Maggie, come here and put your leggings on. Bess I know, I know it hurts, when I was little it hurt me too and we didn’t have Tangle Teasers in my day, you don’t know how lucky you are. Stand still! That’s it, okay, all done. Shoes on please. Maggie – stop pretending to be a slippery fish. You are a slippery fish, flipping heck. That’s it. One foot in, other foot… NO! Stay still! FOOT IN!”

8:49am: “SHOES ON! Where are your shoes? WHERE ARE THEY? Why are there one hundred pairs of shoes here and not one of them are school shoes?! Maggie, get off Bess’ scooter, you’ll hurt yourself. Bess where are your shoes? Look under the sofa, try under the chair, what about the kitchen – where did you put them last night? We need to leave the house, where are your shoes? WHY DOES NO-ONE LEAVE THE SHOES IN THE BASKET? WHERE ARE YOUR FLIPPING SHOES?! We need to leave the house, oh my word, it’s eight forty-nine. We need to go NOW, LET’S GO, LET’S GO, why are we never going when we need to JUST FLIPPING GO?”

8.51am: “I’m sorry love, I’m sorry for shouting, come on – it’s okay. I’ve found your shoes, they were under your bed. You need to put them by the door when you come in, okay? Then we can find them. Maggie, in the pushchair please. No, you can’t go on the scooter, it’s Bess’ scooter, come on, in you get. Coat on Bess, is your Molly-Cat in the bag? If she’s not in the bag she can’t go to school. She’s still upstairs? We need to leave, now, hurry up, go and get her! Maggie, come on, in the pushchair. No you can’t walk, there’s not enough time. No, NO, you can’t take that umbrella, it’s not raining. Maggie – are you doing your poo face? Please don’t do a poo right now! We haven’t got time for poos right now! BESS! HURRY UP!”

8:54am: “Okay, it’s okay, we’ll just really really quickly change your bum. What time is it? OH GOD, we’ve got to be at school in FIVE MINUTES. Lie down Maggie, you have poo all over your bum! Come on, lie down. LIE DOWN! I’m sorry I’m shouting Bess, I’m worried we are going to be late. Very, VERY late. School is going to start and it’s going to start without you and you are going to have a black mark against your name because we can’t ever get out of the door on time and everyone is going to think I am a crap mother! I am a crap mother. I’m sorry for being a crap mother.”

8:56am: That’s it, everyone out of the door, come on! Okay, fine Maggie, bring the bleddy umbrella. WE NEED TO GO! Go fast Bess! Scoot as fast as you can! Well done, that’s it, NO DON’T LOOK AT THE CATS IN THE GARDEN WITH THE WONKY EARS! We don’t have time, we need to get to school, what part of ‘we need to get to school’ is so bloody hard to understand? YES that’s a lovely flower isn’t it but we don’t have time to look now so we’ll look on the way home when we have more god damn time, alright? LET’S GO! I’m not shouting at you Bess, I just need us to get there on time for god’s sake WHAT IS IT NOW LET’S JUST GO – oh god, we’re going to have to RUN. Bess! SCOOT!”

8.57am: SHIT I NEED TO GO TO THE GYM MORE OFTEN. I’m so unfit. I should be able to run this! I’m knackered. Bloody fucking hell I’m so knackered. We’re not going to make it. We’ve GOT to make it. Oh my god my heart hurts. Can you have a heart attack just getting your kids to school in the morning? If I die they’ll say I died running on the fucking school run and everyone will know I’m a shit mother because I was running because I couldn’t get my kids ready on time and they’ll grow up not knowing me because they are too little and all they’ll remember is me shouting at them and then dying on the school run because I am so unfit. Oh thank god, there’s the school. Nearly there. My legs are like jelly, I’m going to collapse. Jesus, I’m sweating like a pig. Please don’t let the teacher want to talk to me, I’ll soak her in sweat.

8.59am: “That’s. It. We. Made. It. Sorry. Mummy. Can’t. Breathe. We. Ran. All. The. Way. Didn’t. We? <deep breath> Yes, I know I’m very red. I’m very hot. Well done my love, Mummy loves you so much, you are such a good girl, you are my little get-ready star aren’t you? I know, I know, the shoes went missing and Mummy went a bit bat-shit there for a few minutes, but we are here now. Yes I was very shouty wasn’t I? I’m a bad mummy for shouting, I know you were trying your best but let’s get up earlier tomorrow, yes? And then it won’t be such a rush. Don’t tell your teacher I’m a rubbish mummy and swore this morning… okay? Think of all the lovely things we’ll do later when you get home won’t you, and I think I have some chocolate biscuits for when you get home, I know, I know darling – I AM a lovely mummy.

9.00am: “Oh good morning Mrs Fisher! Say good morning, Bess, to Mrs Fisher, that’s it, well done. Yes, such a lovely morning isn’t it, so sunny, had a lovely walk here, didn’t we Bess, saw the cats on the way and some lovely flowers, didn’t we, Bess? Now – have a lovely day darling, try very hard won’t you? I love you sooooo much! Thank you Mrs Fisher, have a great day!”


Kate Dyson

Kate is the Founder of The Motherload, the 'owner' of one husband, two daughters, two cats and one rabbit. She loves wine, loathes exercise and fervently believes in the power of women supporting women. Find me on instagram: @themotherloadhq

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