Thank God It's Friday

11th July 2003 at 01:00
New mum and trainee superhero Steff Hutchinson lands her dream job

Monday The phone rings soon after my in-laws arrive for a three-day visit to see their second grandson, all of four-and-a-half weeks old. "I've got an interview on Friday," I say, trying unsuccessfully to hide my excitement.

Tuesday I knew I had to apply as soon as I was shown the advert for head of media and the expressive arts. It's the job I've been waiting for. But the timing isn't ideal as I'm halfway through maternity leave.

Wednesday The interview details arrive. I'll be spending all morning talking to staff in half-hour blocks. I'll need plenty of questions to keep me going - luckily, night-time feeds give me a lot of time to work these out. I look acceptable in black maternity trousers under a long blouse, but the purple Doc Martens have to go. I hand the baby to mum-in-law and go in search of plain black shoes that are sensible, but not boring. This is an expressive arts post, after all.

Thursday The in-laws have gone home, my partner is at work, our eldest child is at nursery. Just the baby and me, reading The TES, to keep up to date. The 14-19 curriculum predominates. I make sure I understand the implications for the arts. I write down my questions in the rare moments when the baby sleeps and plan the logistics for the morning - feed baby, get eldest to nursery and me to the interview with unblemished clothes, all by 9.10am.

Friday I arrive at 8.30am in pristine gear, new shoes and feeling like Superwoman. If I can do this with a five-week-old, I can do anything. It's an enjoyable morning; lovely staff, and the interview is a relaxed affair.

I have special dispensation to leave immediately afterwards, but I have a good feeling so ring my partner to see if he and baby are all right for an hour longer. I stay, I get the job. I am delighted. At home, baby is unimpressed. Not Superwoman yet, just mum.

Steff Hutchinson teaches in Coventry

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