As a working mum, I use coping in a very loose sense here, because there are certainly days where I feel I´m not coping at all.
The thing is, I´ve come to accept that not coping is okay. No, it´s not ideal, and it´s maybe not what you wanted to hear but coping as a working Mum is as much about dealing with the days you are coping as dealing with the days when you just aren´t.
Being a working mum is tough. Not that being a stay at home Mum wasn´t, it´s just a whole other ball game.
What time has taught me has been a few hard lessons:
1. Those working super mums you see on Instagram and bloglovin who have time to make crafts with their kids every evening, home-sewn costumes and three course meals every day either do not exist or are in fact robots from another planet.
2. A home cooked meal that doesn´t involve twenty ingredients and a five-hour cooking time is wonderful, but some raw veggies, chicken breast and organic pasta is also okay, it will not kill your child, will not lead him to sessions with a Psychologist for neglect at thirty years old and will also save your sanity.
3. Taking some time off shouldn´t be a guilt trip. By time off, no I do not mean time with your kids, I mean you time. That is a lunch with friends, a trip to the hairdressers to cover your stress – damaged (yes i made that word up) grey hair or a Pilates lesson.
4. Not sitting entertaining your kids after school, but letting them play by themselves is not damaging. I seriously cried a lot about not having time in the afternoons to do all the wonderful things I used to do with my son before I took so much on. I soon came to realise that my son was happy to have some afternoons off doing nothing and that this doesn´t make me a bad mother, it just makes me a working one.
5. Weekends or at least one day has to be sacred for your kids. Any mum who tells you she is not bothered by not having some Mummy-Child time is probably in self-denial. It bothers us all, but then I took a step back and thought; So how about some Daddy-son time during the week and Mummy-son time at the weekends. If you do have a partner who can help out, let them do it. Yes let them. Stop denying that you aren´t even letting your partner have some responsibility in all this.
So, I know a lot of stay-at – home Mums, (and I´ve been one,) who would give me a sermon about the importance of spending all my time with my Son and putting him first and before my career. Here´s the thing, I did that, for several years, and yes, I loved being there 100% for my Son but it didn´t stop me wanting a career again, and it didn´t stop me wanting something, dare I say it…´more´ than motherhood. Shock, horror, women all over the world throwing their children´s crafts up in the air.
So, having made this decision to regain that part of my self I really wanted to recuperate ASWELL as being a Mother, I decided that this whole working mum thing is all about balance.
It´s about delegating what you can; to a friend, a sister, a mum a spouse or even a cleaner!
Don´t try to be a Supermum. Write down the tasks you have to undertake daily and see if there are actually some things you could delegate to someone else but are loading unnecessarily on yourself.
Be realistic. Nobody expects you to be perfect so don´t put that pressure on yourself.
Get organised. This is the most important thing as a working mum. The more organised you are the more you´ll take pressure off yourself.
Take a look at some of these printables for organising your life
I use printables for everything. I have a cleaning list, a grocery list, a meal planner which I do at the start of every week. I also use this fab calendar which really allows me to see my week properly planned out and takes off a lot of stress.
I will definitely try to do a post later in the week about the many ways I have had to organise my home and my schedule just to keep my sanity.
So, for all you working Mums out there, just know that I get it. I get what you go through daily and I´m right there with you. For all those non-working Mums, I also get you and what you face every day. The most important thing I would say to you all is please, don´t judge each other. That mum who didn´t bake cakes for the school bake sale might be trying to make ends meet, or she might be trying to acheive her dreams.
However you choose to be a mum, you will know whether you´re making the right decision and ONLY YOU can make that judgement.
Keep strong Ladies