So I was commenting, as you do, on some mums group on Facebook about being a stay at home mum and I had a bitchy comment back…. “not all of us have the ‘Luxury’ of being a stay at home mum”.
Now I was taken aback by this comment because first of all my original comment wasn’t bitchy or arrogant and therefore did not need such a comment back and second of all… who the hell is spreading this lie that being a stay at home mum is a fricken luxury!!
Any one who spends time at home all day with their kids knows damn well this is no luxury. Yes I know I’m very lucky to be able to stay at home with my daughter, I do. I appreciate just how many mums would like to do this and aren’t able to due to their home or financial situation but it’s not easy being a stay at home mum, you don’t just sit on your arse all day like everyone seems to think you do.
Some days I don’t get time to eat or drink anything until my husband comes home, purely for the fact I don’t have time or that if I make something it gets put down and left because my baby girl is crying or needs something. Coffee?…. no … unless you like cold coffee… don’t even bother coz you wont drink it.
You run around from the minute they get up until you go to sleep. You’re up making milk, changing nappies and playing on the floor while your knees and back are killing you so that you can help your baby learn to sit up and crawl. You’re begging your darling child to nap so you can wash up the dishes your other half left you from the night before, plus the babies bottles so they can be steralised because you know by now you’re starting to run out. You’re sorting another load of washing because heaven knows only your baby could be sick this much or make a mess all over themselves (and you.. but you don’t matter, so get over it). You’re back upstairs getting your baby back down from her nap and changing nappies and attempting to give her real food rather than milk….. and that’s another load of washing because it went everywhere, all other her and you and the floor and the dog and it’s in your hair… maybe save that for tomorrows load because now you probable have to bath the baby. Your changing clothes and nappies and making more milk. You’re back on the floor holding her up so she doesn’t faceplant or be sick everywhere… again… and you’re back up cleaning all the toys up in time for your husband coming home, now you’re trying to put her down for bed and cleaning the rest of the house while trying to make tea for yourself and your other half for when he gets in…. because you don’t do anything all day, you’re a stay at home mum so its expected of you.
Notice how there was no morning or afternoon break with a cuppa or a lunch break… or quick nip into town on your lunch break to see friends or shop….. yeaaaahhh being a stay at home mum is such a ‘luxury’……. what about toilet breaks…. alone by the way… you get to pee alone.
Now all this sounds like I’m ungrateful. I’m not….honestly. To me there is no job in the world more important that mine and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I love spending all day with my baby girl and even when my back is breaking I would still spend hours on the floor playing with her to see that smile.
I chose this stay at home mum life because I wanted all of these things. I wanted to nap my daughter, I wanted to be the one she slavers on and slaps wet little hands all over. I wanted to be able to see her sit for the first time and crawl and say her first words. I wanted to be the one filming her make a mess with soggy buttered toast and bananas, not receiving them from someone else.
For this to happen, we make sacrifices as a family. We will go without things we wouldn’t have thought twice about before so that I can stay at home.We argue and we fall out because sometimes tensions are high. We’ve had a bad day and while my husband can’t take his frustrations out on his colleagues, I can’t and wont take it out on my baby. So the other person inevitable gets it.
Before women went all women’s rights on our asses, women used to just do this as a matter of duty as a mother and wife. Call me old fashioned but that’s where I want to be. Not at work pining over my little girl. Not until she is in school and I have no choice… and unless I have another one, that’s when I will return to work.
It’s not easy and it is by no means a ‘luxury’, it’s hard work and it exhausting and you don’t get paid to do this, please don’t be under any illusions that I’m sat at home raking it in on benefits because I’m not, we’re struggling it out on one wage. As I’ve mentioned in my previous post Anxiety, a baby and me I have anxiety so it’s not so easy for me to just go out for a bit, or take her out for a walk for a while. It’s so hard sometimes not leaving the house for a week at a time but to me there’s no where in the world I’d rather be than be with my daughter.
Next time you see a stay at home mum… don’t bitch…. just think about how hard her day might have been. Just like yours might have been, with a hard stressful day at work, missing your kids but making sacrifices just like we do, so that you can bring home money.
We’re all just doing our best…. can we all just take a second to appreciate each other instead of tearing each other down?
This post first appeared on www.meetothermums.com on 11th March 2017