Back to School-itis

In the run up to the Easter holidays, here is what a typical day looked like for me:

3am – Wake up, make and imbibe disgusting cup of coffee using 3 spoons of instant, check day’s headlines for mental health/body image/education news, try and get in a solid hour making dent in epic email backlog before car comes to pick me up for breakfast telly.

4.30am – Go to studio, spend few hours commenting on topical education/mental health stories/arguing with Man in Suit about politics.

7am – Travel to school in some far-flung location. Spend train journey making and starting to-do list for day, spreading various notebooks and diaries across tiny train table, taking phone calls and generally annoying fellow commuters by turning carriage into mobile office.

9am – 1pm – Talk to children about their mental health.

1pm -2pm – Talk to teachers about their mental health, whilst eating biscuits.

2.30 – 4.30pm – Attempt to write about day’s happenings for column/article/blog deadline at 5 on train journey home on my blackberry without getting thumb-based RSI.

5.30pm – Continue in emailing/admin/writing/phone call cycle until fiancé arrives home from work at around 7, at which point I know he’ll extract me from my laptop with a crow bar, fling me on the couch and instruct me to SIT DOWN AND RELAX.

Evening – Intermittently tweet, worry about mental health of people I’ve seen that day, attempt to plan my wedding, try and send emails when fiancé isn’t looking, answer Watsapp work queries which arrive approximately every 30 seconds from the Self-Esteem Team, cook something vaguely nutritious and eat it, whilst ‘watching’ Masterchef.

9.30pm – collapse into entirely dreamless sleep.

During the Easter holidays (a significant proportion of which I spent at my parents’ house in the Essex countryside) this is what a typical day looked like for me:

9.30am – Wake up and take time to attempt to extrapolate any potential meaning from a lucid dream I had involving Eddie Izzard.

10am – Wander into parents’ kitchen. Flick kettle on for tea. Sit in the dog’s basket stroking her tummy for half an hour and forget what I came in for (ie to make tea).

11am – Eventually get around to having said cup of tea. Eat nutritious, hearty brunch miraculously provided by Nigella-esque mother.

12pm – 8pm throw frisbies for the dog in the garden, lay under a tree watching the sun glinting through the branches, sing along as Mum and brother playing a selection of Bowie’s greatest hits on guitar, attempt to watch but eventually fall asleep in front of rubbish film with my Dad, all whilst wearing pyjamas.

8pm – Eat another culinary masterpiece proffered by Mum whilst watching Masterchef, thus turning tv programme into pleasing, futuristic, 4D experience. Have a lengthy bath, use 9 different types of moisturiser and emerge smelling like a sweet shop. Declare that day’s activities have left me exhausted and go to bed to have more dreams about Eddie Izzard.

So, you’ll see how I’m currently a little discombobulated. Easter is a weird holiday for everyone. You’re just getting into the rhythm of a pleasing springtime mellow and suddenly it’s time to go back (people who have their GSCEs/A Levels this year excepting. You will have been frantically revising). All three of us at SET were in separate schools yesterday and each found students and teachers alike to be in a state of back-to-school-for-summer-term-itis. No one’s ready. Everyone wishes they were back sitting in the dog’s basket, thinking about making a cup of tea.



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