Friday, 14 October 2011


I am defying Time. I am laughing in Time’s face. I am cocking a snook at Time. I can manipulate Time. I am a Time Lord.

You cannot and will not blame me for this.

You try getting a slow-moving, fiercely independent teenage child with Prader-Willi Syndrome ready for school at the same time as your fiercely independent two-year-old - who is very fast-moving, but in all the wrong directions.

I made a bit of a misjudgement back in September, when my daughter started her new school after we moved house. Previously, she had to get up at 6.45am to be ready in time for the Happy Bus to pick her up. It was an early start because she was furthest away and therefore first on and last off.

Here, in our new home, we live just half a mile away from her new school. So she gets a little lie in.

I worked out that 8am would be the perfect time for her to get up and do what she has to do: laboriously make her cereal ‘mix-up’ and a slice of toast, clean her teeth, get dressed at snail’s pace and stroll the short distance with me to school. Factored into this is her little brother’s zig zag route on his scooter and tendency to stop to throw stones in every puddle and drain.

I was wrong. This is the perfect time only when my husband is also here, giving us two pairs of hands wrangling the wayward kids. When his work shifts mean it’s just me, it falls short. By about 15 minutes.

I explained this to my daughter, and suggested she needed to get up a quarter of an hour earlier.

She wasn’t having it. “No. You said 8 o’clock. I get an extra hour in bed, you said. I want to get up at 8 o’clock.” Her heels were not so much dug in as concreted. 

I tried to explain that 8 o’clock had been giving her an extra hour and a quarter in bed, and the new getting-up time would still give her an hour. But she’s not that great at half hours or quarter hours. She had picked and mixed her analogue and digital times in a combination that had bamboozled her. She couldn’t understand and refused to believe that 7.45 is an hour later than quarter to seven. She wanted that hour, and she didn’t think she was still getting it.

So I fixed it.

Now, I get up, turn forward the hands on the kitchen clock by 15 minutes, and lie about the time.

Video is Gillian Welch - Revelator 


  1. Do you also own a sonic screwdriver?

  2. Crafty work, but worth it. Our two are polar opposites - youngest (11) is out the door and on the march at 7:30 sharp. Eldest (14) lumbers around like Oddbod taking 40-ish minutes to do, well, nothing really!

    It's Mr Welch - the one with his boots glued to the floor and the Bill 'n' Ben fidgets

  3. John - my daughter's got two!

    Mondo - it's a far cry from when my girl used to get up at 5.30 begging for food. Teenage hormones and their ability to increase love for a lie-in are are a definite advantage in her case.
    My boy isn't too bad now. He's like a human dynamo all day and needs a good long sleep to recover. To be fair, so do I.

  4. I constantly get gripes from daughters dad when he stays for the weekend that "there's not a clock in this house that's telling the right time !! " I have tried to explain, but he thinks it's silly.
    I'd give him 3 days of getting her up for the daycare bus before he moved on the hands by 15 mins himself......