As many other women before me, when I joined the motherhood ship I decided to take the plunge and go build a new career I knew little about. I’ve tried several ideas before I got where I am today (still on experimental mode). Some projects failed, some grew, some I call postponed romantic plans.
Giving up a job I truly enjoyed in a work place that made sense for my pre-children, pre-marriage and pre-apple sauce stains life (5* luxury hotels dahh, what’s not to brag about when Bruce Willis is asking you for directions on your lunch break or Lady Gaga enjoying her afternoon tea scone while you’re trying to focus on small talk with a client next to her party?!). Yet what I really gave up was being part of team made of fun, smart and motivated grown ups I’ve learnt so much from so I could eventually call myself a (mostly) working from home mum, making silly faces conversation sessions with a sleepy and rather bored new born while changing his nappy at 3am; all this hassle so I could afford a new type of un-starred luxury called school run.
Truth is the pie in the sky job does not exist, it doesn’t matter if it’s a position you have successfully created yourself or your dream office with a bewitching London Bridge view in a multinational corporation. NOT when you’re a mother. Not when you have tiny screaming mouths to feed, little bodies to dress, bath, clean, strawberry yogurt dipped hairs to brush and Lilliputian teeth to look after. So for the past three years I have worked hard towards finding THE balance between:
Work – raising a child in the almighty city of London
Work – raising a child – working on my marriage (that includes finding more epilating motivation which usually hits rock bottom after 2h sleep nights!)
Work – kid – husband while trying not to isolate myself from friends and family which is a harder job that it sounds
Working on all the above while trying to keep them alive, including myself – by far the toughest task I had to undertake.
What have I found out after chasing a ghost balance that others seemed to grasp easier?
1. Guilty feelings are part of the parenting package
I just had to deal with it…When I picked up my new born from the hospital to bring him home, I was actually planting the seed of a rather inestetic plant with tens of branches called guilty feelings. Some are still growing wild today despite huge efforts of trimming them down, others seem to go slowly but stronger.
2. Little things called sleep and rest are phasing out
Someone told me a while ago that once you become a parent, sleep will never be the same again. Wise words…the lack of uninterrupted sleep nights has been heavily unbalancing my universe.
3. Tiny humans’ needs are not to be ignored/postponed
Children’s needs come first. That’s kind of a given. Urgent or not, these needs can easily shake a healthy routine we’ve all been working hard to establish. But that’s ok, retirement will be a better friend with better balanced days of rest and jelly treats on cruise ships 😉
So if we’re all feeling pretty balance-less, what’s left to do? These tips below may sound like parenting clichés, but they have been helping me since I accepted balance is like ice-cream: it lasts for moments.
Don’t fight the guilt, embrace it. Work around it and don’t compare yourself to other mums who seem to cope much better. We don’t know much about what’s on the other side of a misleading pretty wall.
Enjoy the long nights, they’ll be over sooner than you think and you’ll get to miss them when nostalgia takes over.
Remind yourself that nothing lasts forever and maybe balance might have never been the main focus here, but the journey itself.
Support each other husband & wife, mum friends, don’t isolate yourself. It’s a journey we all go through.
Thank you Ana, inspiring London photographer at White Chateaux Photography for the fun fun fun photoshoot where your tiny human assistant who decided to join us was more than delightful (and if you’re wondering about the cool Notting Hill location where we pit-stopped, just Instagram Biscuiters Ltd for the best icing inspo).
Enter Ana’s Instagram photography competition in order to WIN an exclusive photoshoot, sweetened by a chat over a cupcake at @peggyporschenofficial. Click here for details. Winner announced on 2nd of June.
Dress Asos Maternity, £55.00
Sophia Webster’s signature ‘Chiara’ Butterfly style sandals £450.00
Now, how about your balance? 😉