How (not) to cope when your mum comes to visit

Image description: a messy room post essay crisis

The big day is finally here. No, not your wedding – that’s small fry compared to this. Today, the only day in term you really don’t want to wake up with a hangover (or still drunk from the night before), your mother is coming to visit. 

This happens about once in a blue moon – thank goodness for living more than an hour away from home – and so naturally every last detail is laboured over intensely. After several phone calls about whether to drive or take the train, or arrive on the back of a topless centaur, she reminds you of her estimated arrival time at least six times the day before. 

On the day you do, of course, wake up with a hangover, because in anticipation of the stress of the BIG DAY WHEN YOUR MOTHER IS COMING, you went hard the night before. There is something about a bottle of Tesco brand gin (I don’t even like gin) that really gets you up for a big event.

Suddenly it’s upon you: noon. She’s coming in an hour and you’re still in your dressing gown with your hair stuck to one side of your face where you’ve slept and drooled on it. Step one is to get up and brush your teeth, but it’s this step that is hardest to overcome. The last thing you want to do is to put anything else in your mouth and that toothpaste just tastes too cold right now but you must, her train is at Reading. 

Finally you’re dressed, and ready to deal with the devastation that drunk you caused last night. You grab all the things strewn across your room – why are my pants up there? – and hurriedly shove them into drawers. No time for organisation, but at least you can now see the floor. The clothes that have been in a pile on your floor are touched for the first time in weeks, and you’ve hidden some of the frankly incredible number of pint and shot glasses that you have ‘acquired’ in order to make it seem like your drinking problem is, well, less of a problem. 

What else? How to make it very clear that you have your life together? Well, the mini fridge you got from her at Christmas is, as it almost always is, empty, and you don’t have any loose-leaf tea. A trip to Tesco is in order. You swipe a couple of meals from the reduced section – see Mum, I do eat properly – before grabbing some milk that doesn’t smell like it’s been forgotten for six months and some oranges, for health. Of course there are about fifty people that you know between the shop and home, but right now there simply isn’t time. Running back to your room, you think about removing the reduced stickers to make it look more like you have the ability to plan in advance, but then you remember that you want her to know that you have no money, in the hope that she might give you some more. 

You return to your room an even sweatier mess than you were when you woke up. In your rush to hide the evidence of last night’s Solomons (sorry Hassan, but they take card) you spill the fu*king loose leaf tea absolutely everywhere. This is when you notice the mysterious stain in the middle of your carpet. No amount of panicked scrubbing is going to get rid of what you hope was once red wine. 

There’s nothing to be done. Your doom is impending. There’s only one thing for it. You text her: shall we meet at the pub?