Well, despite years of trying, I have failed to reach the dizzy heights of an Alpha Mum and still languish well down the list. Somewhere around Omega.
Saturday was the start of 'High Security Music Camp' where I pay the children's music school huge sums of Euros to give me a week of peace and quiet and a much needed break from their squabbling over the computer. In return, I dutifully attend the free show at the end of the week where I clap and cheer my offspring with manic enthusiasm and a secret hope of winning the Euromillions so I can pack them off for another week. Seems like a good deal to me.
Two weeks beforehand, an e-mailed list of 'What to Bring' lands in my Inbox. It's not a long list and something that any Alpha Mum could sort out in a day. But not so for us Omega Mums.
The day of departure arrives and Darling Son has one pair of underpants to last him 6 days. Now despite him being 13, that unwashed teenage gene seems to have passed him by and he's almost OCD in his need for a daily shower and clean underwear. I find a few more pairs lurking under the bed/behind the laundry basket (never in it!) and a quick rinse cycle later they are in the tumble dryer. Only an Omega Mum is using the tumble dryer when the outside temperature is in the 30s.
Beloved husband is despatched to the market to buy Darling Daughter a hat which is needed for the show. We saw them there last week but in true OM style I said we'd wait until the following week to buy it. BH returns empty handed. The stall wasn't there. This is clearly the one week out of 52 that the stallholder is otherwise engaged elsewhere.
Eventually, after rooting down the back of the sofas, under the beds and in the back of cupboards a motley selection vaguely resembling the 'What to bring' list is put together, suitcases are found and, only half an hour late, we're in the car heading for High Security Music camp for them and a week of bliss for me.
I return home after dropping them off, still trying to summon a tear or at least a slight feeling of loss, make myself a restorative cup of tea and my phone bleeps. It is a message from DD.
Hi Mum, having a lovely time, met a really nice girl. You FORGOT TO GIVE US ANY MONEY
Quick phonecall to another parent who assures me that her girls will stand DS and DD a few euros if they need it then a quick text to DD.
Will be there tomorrow with money
Could you also bring my blouse for the show, my book and my mobile phone charger. YOU FORGOT THEM ALL. And DS says to tell you you didn't pack his sunglasses and he needs a waistcoat by Thursday
For heavens sake, it's as if they haven't even gone away.