Is your spare time really your spare time? And is it actually right we call it spare time?
Do all you mums find you never have any time for yourself? Don’t get me wrong I’m very fortunate to have my family around to have the kids in the holidays, but on a normal day to day basis it’s very rare I have time for myself until 7.30pm, by this time I want to get ready to sleep. I know this is part of the job, but wouldn’t it be nice to have a couple of active hours where you are not just doing admin or house chores?
If someone is kind enough to take the kids out for a few hours I still don’t take the time to go and do what I actually want to for myself, guilt gets in the way, I end up batch cooking or cleaning the cupboards!
I want to spend some more time on guilt. It comes and goes, but it never really leaves you as a parent. How do you know if you are doing it right? How do you know if you are doing enough? Should you take a trip shopping or go and have your hair done for yourself when there are a million jobs to get done for your family? Should you be able to do that when you need to prepare dinner? You’ll always prepare dinner but does it matter that on occasion it’s something from the freezer and not that wonderful home cooked masterpiece you do most days.
When I fell pregnant, I thought I couldn’t ever have a job where I work from home. I enjoyed having a separate work life and I loved getting ready. I still do, it makes me feel like me. One thing I have realised is my home environment at the time affected my capabilities.
I found jobs to keep myself busy when I was in the house, but not ‘me’ jobs like washing my hair. It was those guilt-ridden jobs I mentioned earlier. I decided to go back to work when my youngest was 5 months old. That was my escape. Everyone has suffered from the pandemic but it’s important to not sell yourself short because you think someone else had it worse. I ended up being the parent who stayed at home…
The way I see it, we need to stop comparing ourselves. The problem isn’t with “staying” or “working”, “home” or the “office”. The problem is finding the balance and feeling so good within yourself that you won’t accept judgement for your choices.
You are probably thinking you don’t really have that time you say and where do we go from here? When you become a parent, you are a mum 24 hours, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Do we have to accept that our spare time includes still being a parent?
I’d like to hear what you think.
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