I’m at the beginning of my stay-at-home mum adventure, but one thing is for sure – I look forward to the weekend. Recently I read a forum conversation where someone commented to a stay-at-home mum, ‘Why are you so excited for the weekend? It must always be like a weekend for you.’ Umm, pardon, what?! I nearly choked on my martini that is required most evenings, in order to recover from the trauma of a full day with a toddler.
Here we go again with the mummy wars…I work harder, I’m more stressed, I need a weekend more than you…It drives me mad. Anyone who has spent time with children surely knows the pure exhaustion and mental torture that is involved. Maybe I’m naïve, but I really don’t understand how fellow mums can belittle each other so easily. We’re all working our butts off. We’re all juggling. We’re all trying to smile through the constant self-doubt. Why the hell can’t we all enjoy a weekend without criticism?
I’ve had the full-on office job. I’ve dealt with crazy working hours, last-minute travel and the expectation to be available 24/7. I know how tiring it is and how desperately I used to need the weekends. But now I’m a stay-at-home mum I still have the right to look forward to two days a week when I’ve got a teammate. When Hubster can be there ALL DAY to back me up, catch the food as it’s flying, stop the cat getting attacked and deal with the toddler meltdowns.
BEING AT HOME ISN’T LESS WORK, IT’S DIFFERENT WORK
I don’t daydream about weekends like I used to. Life has changed and the lazy, breakfast in bed days have been replaced with early morning wake-ups and soft play. Some days I just want to roll over and sleep for as long as I want, but that’s not what I signed up for. I chose this motherhoodery malarkey and I’m in for the long haul. In the last 14 months, I’ve only been apart from Tutti for short periods here and there. In some ways I wish I had more time away, but mostly I’m savouring every minute. I’ll have to share him with the world soon enough.
Even though I no longer work outside the home, my days are still full, tiring and physically exhausting. I’m really enjoying blogging, but it comes with a never-ending to-do list. So it’s another piece of the puzzle to fit into our hectic schedule. By the time Hubster gets home I’m usually rocking in a corner, counting the minutes until alcohol is allowed.
My favourite time of the week has always been Friday night – the excitement of a whole weekend ahead. In my youth it signalled ‘hanging out with friends’ night, ‘drinks’ night and always a fun night. Even though those carefree times are gone I still love this time of the week. Yes I’m a stay-at-home mum, but no I don’t live a relaxed life of luxury during the week.
SO HERE ARE 5 REASONS I LOOK FORWARD TO THE WEEKEND
*It’s two against one
Before I was promoted to the role of mother, I had no idea about the constant nature of parenting. You are never off the clock, you are there to meet the needs of your children every second of every day. And some days it feels like I’m on the losing end of a small person’s demands. Weekends signal a shift in my favour. Two adults to one little human. Everything is easier when there are two of you. Humongous poo? No worries, one can clean and one can dispose. Dinner all over the floor? No problemo, one can hoover and one can mop up the perpetrator.
*We’re a trio
I love one-on-one time with my little prince. We go everywhere together. He’s the Tutti to my Frutti. But it often feels like someone is missing and he is…Daddy. Hubster is a fantabulous dad and Tutti adores him, so the weekends allow us to all be together. Whether it’s playing cars on the lounge floor or a grand day out, it’s much more fun with three.
As a general rule I like structure and routine. From Monday to Friday we have a loose schedule featuring toddler groups, playdates, blogging, chores, errands and the all important naps. I feel more in control when I know what my week looks like. But at the weekend I enjoy the freedom of not having a schedule. Unless we’ve made plans, we have a leisurely breakfast (usually accompanied by dancing in the kitchen), pop out wherever the fancy takes us and attempt to achieve some things off the sodding to-do list.
For the first few months of my little human’s life I didn’t have any time to myself. I was still coming out of the newborn fog. After one particularly stressful week Hubster suggested I pop out for a coffee toute seule. To be honest I jumped at the chance and have never looked back. I realised in that one hour I felt totally refreshed. I felt normal. So now I make sure that every now and again I have a mummy morning. Usually I go for a stroll around the shops and always have an extravagant breakfast. It’s just a few hours on a Saturday, but it’s enough to rejuvenate me.
*Permission to break the rules
Whilst weekdays can become monotonous and predictable, weekends open up whole new possibilities. Since having Tutti we make more effort to go out and about (mainly because staying in the house with a small person makes you a bit cray cray). If I’ve been struggling in the week, I hold on to the hope of a splendid weekend. A time to eat chocolate for breakfast, reach for the alcohol earlier than usual and discover more places to entertain a rampaging toddler.
So whether you’re a stay-at-home mum, working mum, work-at-home mum, part-time working mum or a bloomin’ unicorn, you have every right to enjoy your weekend or day off. Let’s just agree we are all working hard and we all deserve a good time.