I hate this feeling.
The twins have completed two weeks at school. They seem to be ok. Their role reversal is complete now, I think, with Mrini taking off her shoes and going happily into class, while Tara clings to my legs and wails. I think she’s ok the moment I leave, so I leave promptly, with a smile and a wave. The teacher reports that they are fine. Yesterday, apparently, at break, Tara went and grabbed some chips (wafers) from another kid, then ran and gave half to Mrini. They both sat and ate them together, then Tara went off and stole some more. Gosh, I have to tell them not to steal food! The teacher was thoroughly amused and said it’s ok and that the other girl didn’t even notice. But still.
This week, they’ve been staying for the full session – 8.30-12 noon. They don’t seem to get exceptionally tired or anything. It’s a different story for their mother and chauffeur, though. I’ve only done half of the ten drop-and-pick-up trips per week this week, and I’ve already clocked up 100 km. We’ve been discussing buying a new car, but at this rate, what I need is a new me. Or, at least, I need to get them on to that school bus.
What age is the right age for a school bus? Is below three too soon? Probably, but it depends on who’s doing the driving. Ask the driver, and even two-and-a-half is none too soon. It’s not just about the actual driving – it’s about spending close to three totally non-productive hours every day sitting in a car, stuck in traffic, keeping up an inane flow of conversation with the kids half the time (the other half, even they aren’t there) while fretting about whatever else you could be doing if you weren’t doing this.
On the other hand, it’s difficult for the mother in me to accept that the twins will be just fine in a school bus. I worry that they won’t know where they’re going and what they will find when they get there. I worry that they’ll cry, or want to go to the toilet, and there’ll be nobody to help them. I worry that they’ll feel lost and scared and alone.
But, will I ever really get used to this drop-and-pick-up-ten-times-every-week routine? Will I ever be able to manage it easily?
Yesterday, for instance, was just crazy. I had to go for a meeting for some potential documentation work that I might get (or have got, actually). It was pretty much on the way to their school, but what with tennis before that, and walking home with a carton of 10 litres of milk after that… well, I was really tired by lunch time. Then I didn’t sleep well last night, and was awake by 5 a.m. this morning (though my alarm is set only for 5.45, so I wasted a good 45 minutes of sleep), feeling, if possible, even more tired than when I went to sleep last night.
Yeah, I know… I’m a mother now, this is what I signed up for.
But then things suddenly got worse.
See, I dressed the girls and sent them off to school with their clips in their hair, shoes on their feet, school bags with spare clothes and water bottles packed… and I forgot to pack their tiffin boxes! I mean, I had the damn tiffin boxes ready to go, but I left them lying on the kitchen counter. And I saw them as soon as I got home.
What are my poor girls going to do at break??? I feel terrible. Only two weeks and I’ve already come to this! What’s even worse is that I’m sitting here and stuffing my face with breakfast while I type. What kind of a mother am I? I’m a monster mother. I should actually have driven straight back to their school with the blasted tiffin boxes, but I’m just too tired to even seriously consider the idea. I’ll take them when I go to pick the girls up, and they can eat it then, but what are they going to do when all the other kids are eating? Steal food, again? They’ll be hungry by then, too, because of course they don’t eat much breakfast at 6.30 a.m.
So I’m feeling totally lousy – sorry-for-myself, tired, and guilty, all at once.
Sigh. If I’m not the world’s worst mother yet, I’m working my way up the ladder pretty quickly I think.