I am woken up from a deep slumber by urgent shouts of “Maman! Maman!”.
I remember who I am, check the time (7.52), drag myself out of bed and into my daughter’s bedroom with a cheery “Good morning sweetheart”.
The response is a categorical “No!”, which pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the day. Changing a nappy turns into a wrestling match, a bottle of milk is no, getting dressed is no, and our entire 16-storey building is now aware that my daughter disapproves of shoes.
Meanwhile, her brother doesn’t like the cereals we have, and follows me around, repeating about 2 cm away from my right ear that it’s so unfair he cannot watch telly and have a lolly pop for breakfast.
By 8.23, I am fantasising about a very large bin where I could deposit my children, before crawling back under the covers for another four hours.
Unfortunately, we have some shopping to do instead, and the stares of some appalled shoppers burn a whole through my unbrushed hair in our wake. When we finally get home, I fight my daughter for the keys, get the mail, and absent-mindedly open the first envelope in the lift.
Ignoring my daughter’s howls because she wants the keys, and son’s whingeing because it’s not fair he has to clean his guinea pig’s cage, I skim over the letter. Blood starts to pound in my ears, and my vision starts to blur…
On a glorious Wednesday morning, inside a suffocating lift, I am divorced.