Unfortunately this morning was not the first time I found myself sobbing outside my eldest boy’s school. Things frequently happen on the way to school or at school that tip me over the edge. This morning, I was weaping because on ‘wear your pyjamas to school day’ for Comic Relief, I had sent my son into school in his pyjamas, but, disastrously, without a red nose.
I knew exactly what would happen with the three red noses I bought yesterday. The two smallest boys, who always embrace ludicrous accessories, were delighted with theirs and determined to wear them, despite the fact that they more than slightly impeded their ability to breathe. Eldest son was equally determined that he did not want to wear his nose or take it to school. Why did I listen to a four year old? Why did I not realise that as soon as he saw any other child with a red nose he would want his too? I have no idea, but I did listen to him and I didn’t take his nose to school. This was a huge mistake. He told me, with the quivering bottom lip, that he wanted his nose around 87 times.
As I looked around me, I felt he wasn’t just missing the nose. I had viewed ‘wear your pyjamas to school day’ as an excellent time-saver this morning. As he triumphantly pointed out, there was no need to change into his school uniform. It didn’t even occur to me to consider accessories, and yet everywhere I looked there seemed to be children in something more elaborate than my son was in – dressing gowns, slippers, painted faces, Comic Relief headwear. What was I thinking just sending my son to school in his pyjamas (plus shoes and coat)?
He is never upset when I drop him off and it broke my heart. I had let him down over a nose and my guilt wasn’t helped by the knowledge that a) he wouldn’t have worn it and b) it would have been dropped somewhere and forgotten about after 5 minutes.
These actually rather sinister looking noses are, I have decided, not at all suitable for small children. Every 3 seconds comes the ‘put it back on’ cry or ‘where’s my nose?’ which, when said by a 2 year old, sounds confusingly similar to ‘wipe my nose’. This leads to very puzzled looks when my 2 year is hysterically asking where his nose is and wondering why his mum is ignoring him but continually wiping his non-runny nose.
I am all for fundraising, but unfortunately the whole ‘being funny for money’ concept has not worked in our house this year. Next year I am going all out on the costume – like it or not my son will have the onesie, face paint, headwear and all the other accessories I can find. I will not be defeated by Red Nose Day.