Competing sibling agendas

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Why do every one of my children have their own agenda and why do none of them overlap?

Daughter one has her last official day of school today before the exams. She has gone in as Scary Spice. That entailed sitting all last night winding her hair with plastic straws to form ringlets. She did a dry run on Wednesday night and has been wandering around in high heeled boots and a leopard print skirt. Apparently someone is bringing chickens into the school for the last day and daughter one has volunteered to buy them from him. “It’s two for the price of one, mum. A bargain. And then we will be able to survive Brexit,” she said. I pointed out that a) we live in an area of many foxes b) we have a cat and c) she is vegan.

Only son was running around at the time, asking to put the paddling pool out and complaining about the sunny weather. One day of sun and he’s complaining! “They made us do PE outside without any water. It was really cruel. I think I need to move school to protect my rights,” he stated.

On Wednesday night we went swimming. Only son takes swimming very seriously and was wearing his sharkie swimming suit which is probably two sizes too small for him and some snazzy blue goggles. “Geronimo!” he yelled as he divebombed into the pool again and again. Only son is not a strong swimmer yet, but what he lacks in skill he makes up for in enthusiasm. He noticed a friend from school in the pool. The friend, who is a good swimmer, was playing ball with his dad. Only son was watching the game intently. “You are basically the funnest people in the pool!” he said with great gusto, fairly obviously trying to get himself invited into the game. His friend ignored him at first until only son did several Geronimo jumps and his friend asked if he could do a handstand. He showed only son what he meant. Only son had a go, because only son is nothing if not a trier. His bottom bobbed up above the surface and his legs went akimbo. His friend suggested a somersault. Only son did some sort of contorted sideways movement and emerged looking slightly shocked and out of breath. “Ta da!” he said with a big grin on his face.

Daughter three, meanwhile, has been doing a lot of studying from home this week. True to form she has organised everything meticulously and has made a folder with all the different subjects in it.

Daughter two, meanwhile, is focused on a mystery party she is going to at the weekend whose address appears to be a closely guarded secret. Daughter two never goes out so I want to encourage her, but I kind of want to know where it is. “I can’t find out because I don’t have her deets, mum. She’s not on my phone and I’m meeting x at the station who will walk me to her house.” Apparently, it is impossible to actually go up to a person and ask them their address. All communication must be done via phone.

*Mum on the run is Mandy Garner, editor of Workingmums.co.uk.





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