Time changes everything!
It’s 7am and I’m desperate to catch a few last minutes of rest. The bedroom door opens in exaggerated quietness. My eldest comes in.
‘‘7.02!’. He reads the clock. And roars ‘Yes!’ in an attempted whisper as if Man U had just scored a goal.
And that is that. He is up and getting dressed. The other three follow suit. Hangers clatter onto the bathroom floor. Socks argued over. Whispers grow. The younger ones are shushed in even louder tones.
I give in.
You see, my eldest can now read the time. Therefore, we have a new rule - he’s not allowed get up before the clock says 7. This is a serious milestone in my parenting with equally serious consequences.
I can no longer say that it’s 8.30pm when it’s 7; that the programme is on too late or that the party is on in an hour when it’s actually in three. And what’s worse, ‘We’re going to be late for school!’ has lost its threat. I’ve lost my spare 5 minutes. Time is now real.
My solution? All my clocks downstairs are now 10 minutes fast and upstairs, ten minutes slow. Coordinated with precision.