The clock silently ticks on next to me, the alarm function slowly gathering dust from lack of use in recent years.
Who needs an alarm with three children all ingeniously programmed to wake before the sun.
Next to the clock sits my laptop, the presentation I am due to deliver at 9am to my senior business partners lays formally beside it. My suit hangs ironed within an inch of its polyester cotton life and my shoes shine brightly with polish.
The clock ticks on…
Suddenly I am wrenched from a deep slumber, panic submerging my soul, my eyes aching from the sunlight that is burning in my bedroom like an Olympic torch.
The clock mocks me as it clicks silently from 7.59 to 8.00….
Years of 5am starts flash before me, memories of arguments at 6am about staying in bed ring in my ears.
Irony mocks me in the form of sleeping children who are all still in their beds rest fully sleeping on the one day I needed to get up before seven.
Hurtling into action, I scream a wake up call which shakes the very foundations of our home. From the downstairs the dog begins to bark a fury that assures me not only will the children wake but the whole neighbourhood too.
Stepping from the shower dripping with shower gel still lingering on my rear I pluck a sleeping toddler from her bed and attach her to my breast whilst sweeping a smear of brown shadow across my lid. The effect combined with a smear of red lipstick is Coco Chanel meets Coco the Clown after a night on the vodka.
Switching breasts I shove my toe into tights with such power that it creates a ladder that any fireman would be twitching to climb. I peer in the drawer for a second pair and seeing none I reach for clear nail polish to stop it spreading. All too soon I remember I only own bright primary colours of polish so ‘discreetly’ add a dot of red to my legs. The effect is a ladder any fireman would like to climb with a red blob at the end which screams to the world the ladder starts here.
The older children awake and stumble out of their room in a dazed wonder that the sun has finally won the race. A ray catches them straight in their unsuspecting eyes and they collide into each other momentarily. The screams then begin followed by pinching and shouting. Morning has broken and it has broken in fury.
He who helped create them awakens, its all too loud to bear.
8.16 – I teach my children a new word as I bend for my shoes scattering my presentation everywhere. BB follows behind me collecting papers muttering “s’it s’it” to herself whilst beaming at my mayhem.
I launch downstairs forcing my feet into business shoes, the keys aren’t where they should be; I blame the other adult in the house loudly until I find them in my coat pocket; a truth I hide quietly.
I throw myself out of the house running a hand through my hair, two minutes later I throw myself back in to collect my purse, bag and phone.
I make the meeting, with moments to spare, my ladder is quietly ignored as is the smear of sudocrem that is tastefully decorating my sleeve.
I work all day, the quiet of the office is beautifully deafening.
I fall into bed that evening and before I turn to the bliss of sleep I dust off the alarm and put it to use.
The kids wake up at 5 the next day…