Laura is a 28 year old, working mama to two year old Jack. She juggles caring for him around two jobs and has just started a parenting blog called The Dysfunctional Mother documenting her bumbling journey through motherhood. For updates please follow her on Twitter – @laurabax77
This is a day in Laura’s life:
6:30am. My alarm goes off. On a good day I’ll wake up in my own, actual bed but more often than not I’ll find myself in the not-quite-a-full-single in my two year old’s bedroom, achy, stiff and sometimes with the child himself peering over me, his nose centimetres from mine like something out of The Omen. After exhausting every sleep training exercise going we are still having issues with self settling and lone sleeping during the night. So against my better judgement I find that the only way for me, my son Jack, my partner Carl (who incidentally is coping with lone sleeping very well) and indeed the whole street to get any rest is to give in and go sleep in the spare bed in the event of a midnight meltdown. Jo Frost wouldn’t approve but hey ho. As I stagger sleepily through the stair gate into his room at some ungodly hour ofthe morning and make my way to the spare bed, Jack’s sobs will instantly evaporate and I’ll sense him smiling smugly in his cot-bed before we both nod off again. In the morning my alarm tends to wake him if he’s not already up and he’ll come and climb in next to me for a quick cuddle. Although I’m still cross, this is usually quite lovely.
We get up and plod to the bathroom where I’ll get washed as Jack plays with his cars on the bathroom floor or steals handfuls of bubbles from my bath then claps and tells me its snowing. When we’re dressed and ready we head downstairs where I feed Jack, the cat, the fish and, if I have time, myself before heading out to work and nursery at what should be 8:00am but is usually closer to 8:15.
The nursery drop off is always uncertain. Even now, after nearly two years, he has his wobbly days. Other times he’ll slam the door in my face without so much as a kiss goodbye. Then it’s off to work I go. I work for the local council in an administration office and my day usually involves taking calls, dealing with accounts, organising neighbourhood maintenance issues such as leaves that need sweeping, grass that needs cutting, graffiti that needs scrubbing and so on with a lot of biscuit munching and coffee swilling in the process. It’s hardly the most glamorous or exciting job but it’s nice to know I’m doing something useful for the community and the hours are flexible around Jack. At lunch I make the most of the hour to myself and try and cram in shopping, lunch dates or any appointments.
Because I work until 5pm, my mum tends to pick Jack up from nursery and take him to her house for tea. This is where I pick him up from when I finish work. I have a chat with my mum and usually raid her fridge before bringing Jack home at around 6pm. Then we have an hour or so before bedtime to chill out, play and catch up. Jack is three in April and his speech is really coming on. I like nothing better than hearing him chatter about his friends at nursery or singing new songs he’s learnt. He’s still not too big for his bath, bottle and bed routine though. This is the one part of our day that always stays the same and although it can get a bit hectic (especially with the ritual, pre-bath wrestling that usually takes place) he still settles down with his bottle. I’ll be sad when that has to go. Because of the aforementioned sleeping issues, I sometimes have to stay with him til he drops off, reading endless stories or getting back in that bloody spare bed until he’s convinced I’m not deserting him but usually he’s asleep within 15 minutes or so.
I spend my evenings catching up on my writing work. As well as my ‘day job’ I also work from home as a content/copywriter for a digital marketing company and have to slot this work into my schedule as and when I can. Then we eat, watch a bit of TV and it’s bedtime. In thewords of Michael Jackson…another day has gone.
So there you have it. A day in the life of a working mama. Of course because I only work part time for the council, the second half of my week usually looks quite different and involves spending much more time in our pj’s. On Friday’s Jack goes to preschool for the morning and so I use that time to catch up on any writing and/or housework. At the weekend Carl is off work so we try usually have a day out even if it just involves soft play, lunch in a cafe or a stroll around the park. And every other weekend Jack spends time with his dad so we get a little free time then too. It’s a mixed bag. I feel like I’m a working mum, a SAHM, a work from home mum and then on the weekends he’s with his dad and we go out shopping or lunching or to the cinema I guess strangers could be forgiven for thinking I’m not a mum at all. There are good things and bad things about our life, our situation and our routine. But we make the best of it and we are all pretty happy.
Laura is taking part in my #DayInTheLife project, a series of posts where people write about their typical day. If you would like to take part, please fill in the form on my blog post here.