Stay at home mum, Full time working mum, part time working mum, or on maternity leave… all the options! We find ourselves in need of a routine no matter what life throws at us right? Or is that only me?
Rewind 12 months, I’m heavily pregnant and considering “what I’m going to do with all this free time” now I won’t be working. I could literally laugh out loud at my stupidity! How stupid I was to think I’d actually have spare time.
Nandy came along and life was mad, there was no routine, I barely slept, the house kind of stayed tidy and life went on. After a few months I did start to find my feet and establish a routine. We had baby groups to attend, we had clearer feed times and I actually got dressed of a morning. Life was good.
During the final 3 months of my maternity leave my daily “mum routine” was a well oiled machine. Nandy was independent enough to play quietly in the day whilst I ran the hoover round, ironed clothes and made beds, by 4pm I’d start prepping a healthy dinner in time for hubby to return home at 5 and feed, then dress Nandy for bed and at 7pm he would be asleep and I could go to the gym. Winner!
Then came the shock… I had to go back to work.
Luckily for us hubby was able to take a month off work to allow me to focus on settling back into work and give him the chance to start practising taking Nandy to nursery and being daddy day care. This all seemed like a great idea at the time, until I realised that my husbands perception of looking after Nandy and being off work is ‘slightly different’ (aka totally different) to mine.
EXAMPLE A – DOWNTIME
If had any down time I would make the most of it and run the hoover around or empty bins, iron clothes and restock the nappy drawer.
Hubbys stance:- Any downtime has been spent fishing with his dad, playing on the PlayStation and tinkering in the garage!
EXAMPLE B – STANDARDS
Clearly I have stupidly high expectations and standards. I used to have Nandy fed and the tea cooked with little or no disruption or havoc. Hey, the dishwasher would probably be on the go and the floors mopped too!
Hubbys stance:- Is dinner being cooked, yes, quality in itself isn’t quite there and there food mess all over the worksurfaces like a food bomb has gone off and exploded all over the walls. But dinner is on – that’s the main thing right?
EXAMPLE C – PLAYTIME
I’m going to be honest, I was never one for spending hours and hours playing with toys – I’d much rather be pushing the pram around the forest or going for a walk. Perhaps not 100% entertaining for Nandy. Even if I did play games I’d contain the mess and destruction to the playroom only as to not undo my hard work of hoovering earlier in the day!
Hubbys stance – lounge / kitchen and playroom floor are all areas for mess, toys and play and I’m treading on lego as I walk through the front door! Nandy is running riot, but do you know what? Nandy has loved the extra stimulation and fun so I’m giving hubby that one!
What’s your routine? Do you even have one? Have you considered what impact others have on your routine or how it may change when or if you work? I’d love to hear from you!