The pavements are well worn by the walking school mums. On a sunny day there is nothing better to see than the mums herding the kids together as they venture a little further on their scooters and bikes but when it rains, everything changes for them all.
It’s Monday and it’s raining!
I text my daughter, Kate, to see if she needs help with the school drop-offs. I don’t hear from her straight away as she doesn’t like to take the easy out and is probably on her way. Resigned to that thought, a text appears, ‘Can you collect Oliver and take him to school?’ Kate is stranded at Toby’s preschool, first drop off of the day, next stop was to be Oliver’s school, a reasonable walk away.
I arrive at the preschool and theirs my daughter holding back the tears. Oliver is standing by his mum, he’s only five. Toby has joined the other children inside. The other two, Xavier and Adelaide, are nestled in the twin stroller protected from the rain and I just know what she is feeling?
She doubts herself and feels overwhelmed by the responsibility. Four kids!!!
I help her navigate the stroller through the preschool gates whilst the rain continues to pour. I direct Oliver to the car and gently touch my daughter’s back to comfort her and to speak without saying a word, I know .…
With only seconds to exchange a look, I watch my daughter soldier on bravely in the rain, maybe relieved help was at hand, but I know she cried all the way home.
Maybe she needed to cry today.
I arrive at Oliver’s school and we get out of the car. ‘Have you got your school bag?’, I ask. I walk Oliver to his classroom with umbrellas charged and on my way back to the car, I reflect.
I remember that feeling too.