Is it OK to put ‘School Run Mum’ on your CV? No? Well it bloody well should be!
It dawned on me this morning, as I was walking home after successfully delivering my two eldest children, age 7 and 4yrs, safely to their classrooms (adrenaline from the stress of the morning still pumping through my body) that completing a school run really is no mean feat. In fact, completing a successful school run uses skills and talents that you just could not showcase in many other roles.
Take this morning for example, not only did I get myself ready (ok, I didn’t look like Kate Moss but I was showered and dressed – in clothes that did not yet have baby sick or dried weetabix caked on the shoulder!) but I breastfed, dog fed and boy fed (two separate breakfasts obviously, because deciding on the same cereal would just be too easy!). I successfully wrestled two boys into their (clean) school uniform (including watching a youtube tutorial on ‘how to tie a tie’ – oh the joys of having a junior school aged child!), cleaned their teeth, brushed their hair (the bed head struggle is real) and got them into school shoes and jackets. I rounded up reading books, homework books, book bag, school bag, football kit and water bottles . Now, this all sound pretty hard work doesn’t it? Well, throw into the mix the fact that during this time, my 7 year old kept disappearing to the garden at key moments to play football, my 4 year old decided that constructing train tracks was far more entertaining, and my 6 week old decided that this was the perfect time to release the mammoth poo that she had been storing up for the last 3 days!
Now for the challenge of herding said children, and dog, the 1.25km walk from home to school. Not only a physical challenge (but hey, it saves me a fortune on gym subscription!) but also a major test of vigilance (various roads to cross), patience (refereeing arguments over whose turn it is to press the button at the crossings) and acting skills (smiling at passers by with an air of “yep, this is easy, I’m totally in control of this situation”).
This is all before school starts at 8.50am. 8.50am! At that time in the morning pre children, I would’ve been strolling into work with a coffee in hand thinking my commute had been stressful, yes the commute that involved actually sitting down on a train (well, most days) reading a book or catching up on text messages. My make up would be done, my hair neat (well, as neat as my hair can get anyway) and my outfit would be totally baby sick free.
Obviously my situation is slightly more intense than others; not everyone will have as large a brood as me. But there is no escaping it, completing a school run (with one child or five) is bloody hard work: planning, organisation, delegation, wide scale multi-tasking, compassion, negotiation, mediation, presentation, the list can go on. If these achievements were listed on your CV against a work place role, you’d sure fire get pretty much any job you applied for.
So, more than the personal secret fist pump of self appreciation when striding out of the school gates, school run mums deserve so much more recognition. Instead of listing meaningless GCSE results from near 20 years ago, let us put it on our CVs to show just how amazing we really are.