Taking Care of Business

Sometimes I use the time when Joshua is at daycare to do nice things, for treats, like eating out, meeting friends or long walks. We have a four and a half hour window from dropping him off by 10 until one of us has to set off to collect him again, which is plenty of time to squeeze in some fun. But some times it is not fun that has to be had, but chores that need to be done, such as essential cleaning or catching up on admin. This week I had a long list of email chases to send and phone calls to make, both are difficult to achieve when Joshua is up and about as he appears and demands attention when he can see I am distracted, rather like a toddler does. So I was able to focus and I sent several emails to :

  • Our social worker asking where we were up to on our alternative respite provision as it all seems to have gone very quiet since we had our tour and I expressed a cautious interest? I received a same day reply telling me that she had received a quotation and the decision needed to go to Panel to be approved.
  • Our previous respite provider to ask if they had managed to recruit any new staff yet and might be in a position soon to reinstate our monthly respite weekends? I received an email the next day telling me that a new member of staff was undergoing induction and training, and that Joshua might be able to return from the end of August for potentially one night a month! He is funded for 3 nights but that would be a good start.
  • Our solicitor to see where she has got to with an outstanding Land Registry issue. I am still awaiting a reply there.
  • Joshua’s old school Head asking why I had not had a reply to my offer to speak to the parents with children in 6th form about our experience of transition. I have noticed that there is now a gap in the school’s support since the lady who managed transition retired. She knew everything about transition and could signpost parents even if she did not know something. Now at every parent meet up we have, the Mum’s have lots of questions for me about the process of leaving school and starting daycare . So I suggested to the Head that he might organise some ex-parents, like me, to come into one of their coffee mornings to answer parent questions. I am still to receive a reply to either email.
  • Joshua’s previous Head of 6th form to check if staff had been invited to our Leavers Party in September as I had not heard anything from him. I received an email the next day to tell me that staff had been invited by email and in early September he would give me numbers of RSVPs.
  • Joshua’s ex-headteacher to invite her to our Leavers party in September. I am still awaiting a response.
  • The Bank to ask why an active bank account was unilaterally closed without any warning, leaving me to set up new direct debits for the payment of bills. This resulted in several lengthy unsatisfactory phone calls and a formal complaint. It seems that I have to give the Bank up to 8 weeks to respond before I can take my complaint to the Ombudsman and I cannot get access to my money that was in that account, which was suspended, until I reclaim it and I cannot reclaim it until the end of July! I was furious and had to go out for a bike ride to calm down, before I exploded.

So we are very lucky to have the time when Joshua is at daycare, having fun, to have the space and opportunity to make these calls and emails. I also feel lucky that I have the ability to write a formal complaint – thanks for that training and example Mum ! – and the stubborn persistence not to let it go, until the matters are resolved. The Royal Bank of Scotland will be hearing more from me in the next few weeks and I will not be pacified by their standard response of ‘I am sorry that you feel this way’, rather than actually apologising for the mistakes that they have made. Bring it on!

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