The 'back to school' routine has brought a certain equilibrium back into my life

By Justine O'Mahony

Published 08/09/2015 | 00:00

There is a certain beauty to routine and no routine is more beautiful to me than the back to school one. I've never been one of those mothers who laments the end of summer. In fact I sigh with relief the day I inspect their new uniforms, hand them their school bags and shove them out the door for the first day of term.

It's not that I don't love them, because obviously I do. How else would I be able to put up with their constant bickering and demands for tea and chocolate hobnobs. But you know what? Me and my house need some alone time. I need to sit down for more than five minutes without someone calling my name and asking for something to eat.

The house needs it too. All summer we have lived in a constant state of chaos, the house looked like it had been burgled.....every day.

By the time we got to week four of the holidays I gave up on asking them to tidy up because a) they were ignoring me and b) even if they had obeyed they would only have messed it up again ten minutes later.

So I gave in and succumbed to squalor. I became, what my mother would call 'slovenly' which, to be honest wasn't any great effort on my part at all.

I am inherently lazy and don't need much persuasion to just sit back and do feck all.

But after being caught four times by the neighbours, still in my dressing gown at mid day, (one asked me was I sick. I told her I just didn't have any make up on) I decided enough was enough.

The kids needed to go back to school and I needed to get my act together.

September heralded a new regime. Up at the crack of dawn (Ok 8 am-that's nearly the crack of dawn in my book), breakfast made, lunches packed, checks carried out for various school paraphernalia and out the door they go.

Let me just say, in my defence-I had great intentions.

I was going to start bringing the dog for a walk first thing, I was going to paint the living room, clear out all the wardrobes and do the skirting boards. I was going to teach myself how to bake and join the library.

Like I said, I had great intentions.

But somehow life got in the way. I never brought the poor dog for a walk or paint the living room but I did manage to clean out the fridge and wash two windows inside and out. I'll get to the rest of them eventually.

I have however restored my own personal equilibrium by having a bit of quality 'Me' time. Don't laugh but this for me is having my breakfast watching the first half hour of This Morning and being able to read the paper in peace. The house still looks a bit, shall we say, 'lived in' but at least when the neighbours call now I'm fully clothed.

Until mid term anyway.

Wexford People

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