I have now attended the sum total of two school discos with my two daughters who thought they were the best thing they’ve ever seen or done, so I feel qualified to write a guide about them for all those unsuspecting parents who, like me, may think “Oh, a school disco. How lovely! I shall take my two children there and watch them happily dance and play while I kick back, chat to other parents and have a sit down” and instead end up pouring themselves a large glass of wine as soon as they get in whilst searching in the freezer with the other hand for a bag of frozen peas to put on their sore head and wondering how soon they can get in the bath to ease their aching muscles.
That was a long sentence.
Here are 6 handy tips to school disco survival:
- Manage your expectations. Expect utter carnage and prepare your body as though you were about to undertake a 10k run. Eat something for energy – maybe a banana, or a small piece of wholemeal toast with low-fat spread. Limber up – perhaps perform some light stretches. I like the classic yoga pose ‘downward facing dog’ for mental clarity, inner strength and general zen.
- Consider your children’s disco-wear very strategically. Always remember that if you arrive at the disco to find that the other children are wearing their Elsa dresses whereas yours are wearing what you thought were perfectly acceptable pink party dresses, then you may as well forget your life as you knew it.
- Go to the tuck shop ASAP. Wow – those tuck shops are like magnets to children. For some they can’t drag themselves away even if they want to, like there’s some invisible strawberry-flavoured shoelace pulling them back. Get there early folks before your juice (wine for the parents even in the case of our school hooray!) gets spilled before you’ve even sipped it.
- Wear hardy shoes. Your feet will get trampled on. No matter where you stand. Absolutely guaranteed – you could be stood in a corner on your own (rocking) and there’ll be some small foot that will somehow still tread on yours.
- Be prepared for your children to go AWOL. It’s dark, there are disco lights, lots of children and parents, the school yard may be open to play outdoors and suddenly YOU DO NOT HAVE A CLUE WHERE YOUR CHILDREN ARE. Stay calm, as they have merely entered ‘disco world’ and shall return to you, which brings me neatly onto…
- Use the experience as an exercise in ‘daily mindfulness’. If you can practice pure calm in school disco world, then your life will be replete with zen satisfaction and transcendental loveliness.
Finally, be prepared for Gangnam Style and various Taylor Swift songs to be in your head for a good 24 hours. I would also add Let it Go but I think my brain is already permanently wired to play this on loop.