I am She’s a Stay at Home Working Mum

“Your Mammy doesn’t work.” or “Your Mammy doesn’t have a real job”

I remember hearing this a few times as a child and as a teenager.
I remember not thinking much of it. I didn’t see it as an insult or a scathing comment until I was 17 and my Mum had just had Baby Number 6, and I overheard a visitor “jokingly” dismissing my Mum with “Oh at least you don’t have a job to go back to. You should try having a career on top of it….hardeeharrhar!”

And I remember that moment because it was probably the first time I lost the plot with an ACTUAL adult. Let’s just say, there were metaphoric stitches required for the new posterier that might have been ripped. She didn’t visit again.

It was a line delivered with one of those fake “hardeehar” Mary-of-the-Poppins laughs, which people of the bitch variety add to their insults to mask them as “Only jokes” or not meaning any harm.

At 17, I was old enough to recognise that the visitor was in fact being a grade a Sanctimammy. And I was old enough to defend my Mum. Because my Mum might not have put on her face and heels every morning and gone to an office or a school or a hospital or a shop or wherever to do a JOB, but BY CHRIST did she work. She worked harder than any other person I know. She still does. She was there, and is there, for us every step of the way, and I’ll never know how she did it.

Being the eldest in a house full of Babies, I learned VERY young that being a Mum is a full time job. There is no rest. There is no relaxation. There are no coffee breaks. There is no “Clocking in” or “Clocking out”. No one cares if you’ve had your lunch hour. Hell, most days, you don’t get lunch! (unless you count their leftovers as lunch, which somedays, we all do. 😅) You don’t have a team to thrash ideas over. You don’t have a Boss to ask for advice. You don’t have a Supervisor to show you the way.

When we were kids in the Donegal sticks in the 80’s, our Mums had a VERY different life. Many of them were at home, all day, without communication, without conversation, without cars, until the Daddy came home (for an hour before hitting the farm.). There were no Forums to ask questions about teething, or wind, or puke. There were no online nurses to contact if a rash appeared.

There were 3 TV stations FFS! So there were no digital babysitters. (and no Peppa in fairness.) There were few telephones and even if there was a phone in the house, you didn’t call up your mate for a 20 minute chat unless you were able to pay for it. There were no Mother and Baby groups, no baby massage, no Mammy meet ups…

Being a Mammy TODAY is lonely. I can’t get my head around what it must have been like for our Mums. And remember too, that then, you DARE not admit that you were struggling with your emotions or your “nerves” as they used to say in hushed, loaded tones.

Being a Mammy is 24/7. It’s the hardest job in the world whether you’re a SAHM (Stay at home Mum) or a CM (Career Mum). If you don’t leave the house to work, you don’t get to say things like “Sorry, I’m finished for the day” or “That’s not my problem. Talk to JohnJoe” or “I’ll leave that until tomorrow.”  You work all day, every day (and all fecking night sometimes) and there is no pay-cheque at the end of it. There is no sick pay. There is no annual leave. There is no pension accumulating.  Running a home and organising a family is hard. It is full on. It is stressful. It is exhausting. You might not a get a playslip or wages at the end of the month, but boy, do you work.

Now, Before anyone starts their “Try doing all that AND working an ACTUAL job”, let me stop you right there.

I AM a working Mum. I have a very busy, demanding and stressful job. When I am working, I have 13 times more crap in my head to think about than I do when school is closed. I know too well how fecking EXHAUSTING it is to trying to juggle being professional and organised in your JOB, keeping your family on top of all the EVERYTHING and trying not to lose your shit completely.

It’s a whirlwind and it’s madness, but do you know what? Just because I have a career AND kids, doesn’t make me better or superior to a Mum who stays at home to work. I envy Mums who can stay at home. I’m blessed that I was able to work part-time last year and that I get so much time off to spend with the girls. I know that. But the time came for me to go back full time and I did. I love being at home with my girls, but do you know what? I love my job too. So that’s what is right for ME.

When I was off, I looked forward to dressing in my school clothes and having an uninterrupted conversation and a hot coffee in the staffroom when I returned. When I’m at work, I break my heart that I’m not snuggled up in my PJs on the sofa, watching Peppa Pork.

My motivation

But let’s get this straight. The mums who stay at home ARE working. They work full time. They just aren’t on a payroll. They don’t get paid for the work they do. In money anyway. (Working Mums get the Children’s Allowance too so don’t even TRY that BS).
I envy the Mums who stay at home through choice, but remember that so many are SAHMs because the RIDICULOUS cost of Childcare doesn’t give them any feckin choice. Many would love to be back in the workplace. Many of them look forward to it. But, the shoe fits both feet. To the Mammies who tut at Career Mums for leaving their children to go to work, remember that you’re not a better Mammy than a Career Mammy because you stay at home with your kids.

We all do what we have to do.

I go back to my usual mantra… Don’t be a Sanctimammy.

Just because you do things differently, doesn’t make you better.
Just because you work AND have kids, doesn’t make you better than the Mum who is working her ass off at home.
Just because you’re able to stay at home with your Puking minion, doesn’t make you a better Mum than the Mum who had no choice but to leave hers with Granny.
Every Mum does what SHE has to do for HER family. ANd the only person who knows what is right for your family is YOU.
You don’t know another Mum’s circumstance. You don’t know her. You don’t know if she’s happy, or watching you getting into your car to go to work, longing to be you. You don’t know if she’s driving to work in tears because her Baby cried as she was dropping her off. You don’t know how many times a day the Mammy in the office feels a gutwrenching guilt at being away. You don’t know how the Mum in her kitchen is longing for a conversation.

And if you EVER hear yourself dismissing another Mammy because she’s doing it differently to you, lift your hand, grab that redundant wooden spoon and hit yourself a good hard slap on the arse with it. 😂

Then get over yourself. 😘

Have a Fablis Friday night my Lovelies.
And keep up the good work.😘

​It’s here.
It’s horrid.

But, like everything, it’s happening whether I like ot or not, so I have to pull up my “Big Girl” knickers and get over it. 😂💗😂
It’s the night before I finally add “outside of the hoouse” work to all the “Stay at home Mum” work I already do.  

Over the past week, more than a few people have said things like “You’ll be glad to get back into routine”, “Sure you’ve been off for AGES,” and even “It’ll give you something to do again”.  It seems to be assumed that being at home with two kids is simply an extended holiday; easy peasy.
What people often forget is that when a Mammy (or Daddy indeed) goes back to work, none of the “SAHM” work goes away.  

It just gets ADDED to. 

The cooking, cleaning, washing, shopping, surviving… It’s simply condensed into LESS TIME.😥😥
And that’s before the playing, teaching, growing, reading, and loving that our kids need from us.
Being a SAHM is hard work.

Working AND being a Mum is hard work.

Because, technically, we’re both.  Although we go out to another building to do our jobs for a few hours a day, we’re still also Stay at home Mums, because Mums NEVER switch off! 
My Mum has been a SAHM for 35 years.  She’s the hardest worker I know and her “career” was and still is,  us.  

She never got a sick day. She rarely even gets a “Her day”.  

Her salary?

 Slobbers and smiles and a few successful “Proud Mammy” moments along the way. 😅😍😍

  Each of us owes who we are and what we’re achieving every day, TO HER, WORKING to be everything we needed.  She’s raised 6 of us and is now helping us to raise OUR babies.  She might not have had to answer to a boss or fill out paperwork or wear a uniform, but she left her job to do THE single most important job in the world…full time.
And while I would give ANYTHING to give my girls the same dedication and security, I can’t.

 That’s just life. 
I know from my short maternity leaves from my job, how absolutely heart wrenchingly lonely being a SAHM can sometimes be.  When the only conversation you’ve had in a day was with a grumpy, tantruming toddler or a Babby whose vocabulary stretches only to “Dadada”; when you answer Mr. FECKIN TUMBLE, OUT LOUD; 😅 (admit it Ladybelles, we’ve ALL done it!), then you know the importance of companionship, of colleagues, of friends.
I can’t imagine what it was like for Mums before social media etc. 

 One of the few things I am genuinely looking forward to is spending some time with my colleagues. 

I’m lucky to work with real friends. They’ve stayed in touch and kept me included in the year I’ve been off.  For that alone, I’m blessed.
My biggest fear tonight is how my Brain is going to cope with all the EXTRA stuff: the new routine, the work, the prep, the marking, the stress, the Mini-Me at Big school, the tiredness, the THINKING.  How I’m going to FIT all of that, (even though it’s what I’ve done for 15 years without a thought! ), into my head on top of the mayhem of our Crazy frog lifestyle as it is, I DO NOT KNOW.
And yet I will.

(There may be a grape shortage in the next 6 months, just to warn you! 😅🍷)
By tomorrow night, I’ll feel like I was NEVER away. I know I’ll soon get back into the swing of things. I’ll manage, like every Mummy with a job does.

  I’ll feel guilty every day. I’ll hate leaving.  I’ll have days where I function on no sleep.  I’ll have days where I’m at work wishing I was at home with my girls.  I’ll constantly remind myself that I’m working for THEM; because reality doesn’t allow me to stretch this precious maternity leave for even another day.


So while I spend most of today sobbing like a twat everytime I looked at Princess and Mini-Me, I also had a lovely day with them.  The Him even took a bit of time away from Jim to join us. 🕵 Jim is probably huffing tonight, but SOMETIMES Crazy,  Highly emotional Wife is more important! 😂😂
We spent a blissful afternoon at Oakfield Park, visited lovely friends and then I came home and burned the dinner while Princess found a marker and drew ALL OVER HER FECKIN FACE! 😣😣😣


So yes, a significant but pretty normal day really…
Finished obviously with a little tipple, to celebrate having had the chance to be a SAHM for even a while, and to make myself feel a little bit bloody better about going back to my “other job” tomorrow.
Bubbles it is.

Cheers to the working parents, both in the workplace and in the home. 

You’re FABLIS. XXXXX 
SAHM 😙😙