18 Feb


When I was  on maternity leave, I had an incredibly irritating exchange with someone – a woman, specifically –  who asked me “What do you DO all day?”.  Yes, offended SAHM mamas of the world, yes. Afterwards, I pondered if it was asked out of genuine curiosity, and not condescension, but I honestly didn’t know.  I pointed out to her that I couldn’t speak for all stay-at-home-mothers of kids of different ages, but being on maternity leave with a tiny baby didn’t leave a lot of time for hobbies or doing second degrees. 

Then the other week, a colleague in my office asked if I was ok, now that I’m back from my ‘vacation’.  Listen, work people, it’s time to get off your high horses about what actually happens in offices vs. being responsible for a tiny human all day, every day, for 7 months!  That’s a role which demands that you be on your game, emotionally and physically.  

The needs of a baby are 24/7, and in those brief periods when they are snoring tiny snores, I was attempting to sometimes shower & take care of myself, trying to keep on top of laundry (it will never, ever end)/cooking meals/ washing baby bottles / pumping milk / doing dishes/ attempting to clean without crying from tiredness (sometimes all I could manage was a minimal sweep, so that we weren’t actually choking on dust at night)/keeping the toilet paper stocked in the bathrooms… even with some husband help in the evening, there was just always a lot to do. You can’t ask your partner to do that much when they’ve been at their own job all day.

Sheryl Sandberg Presents Stock Photos of Hip Working Moms

I’ve never had a harder job than nannying for my two gorgeous nephews, full-time, circa 2005. It was amazing, and I look back on it with enormous emotion and fondness, but it took a lot out of me. A vacation it was not. Nor was the 7 months I spent with my baby boy a vacation.  Was it a welcome break from the monotony of working in an office full-time? Yes! You betcha! Was it less stressful? Absolutely. Did I feel valued as an adult professional, enjoy coffee breaks and regular adult conversation and banter while mostly sitting on my bum opposite a computer all day? No. No, I did not.

Vacation? This is a vacation.



Please leave a reply! Thanks - Dannii x

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