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20th February, 2020
Hi, my name is Harper and Kingsley’s mama, but you can call me Carly. I started the most challenging but rewarding role of my life (cliché I know) just over 4 years ago when I gave birth to my wonderful daughter. 2 and a half years later the workload doubled with the arrival my amazing son.
Before this I was a newly promoted Training Coordinator in the insurance industry, responsible for the training requirements of 7 departments. I was dedicated, enthusiastic and excited about progressing in my career. Responsible with little life responsibilities and committed with very few commitments.
I worked full time and enjoyed my down time as and how I pleased. Weekends away, parties, shopping trips or just going for a run. All that I required was my own enthusiasm and willing.
Leaving the house consisted of grabbing my bag, shoes and coat, opening the door and walking out. Oh, how I took those days for granted! If I forgot something it was no big deal, I could just pop back or just go without.
How different my life is now! Down time? Hahahaha!! Some knitting maybe in front of a good True Crime documentary or series with a cup of coffee. Only of course once the tiny humans are asleep, the bottles have been cleaned, packed lunches made, bags packed, washing up done, washing machine loaded, house tidied, dinner cooked and eaten and anything else that needs doing has been done. All whilst also hoping they don’t randomly wake up before you even get to sit down.
I am extremely lucky that I have very supportive parents who adore spending time with the kiddos (and more importantly provide free childcare). They are also happy to be on babysitting duties as and when an occasion calls for this Mama to go out.
Going out is brilliant but very different to LBK (life before kids). Tiredness creeps in from lack of sleep throughout the week, so you yawn your way through the evening. Sometimes you wish you had just taken this child free opportunity to catch up on some zzzz’s. If by some miracle you have the energy to really party hard, there is a little voice in the back of your head, telling you to take it easy. Hangovers are now 100% worse with two little ones running around demanding things from you when you feel “delicate.” To para phrase my eldest, “why did you drink too much adult juice you knew it would make you poorly?” Well it’s the age-old question we all ask ourselves kid!
Everything in life is different. Leaving the house now takes what feels like 5 hours. Socialising is difficult to organise and tiring when achieved. Sleep is a mystical thing that you miss dearly, and you say things you never expected to say, “don’t lick your shoe” and “yay you did a poo” being a just a couple of examples.
Shopping is stressful, mealtimes are messy, tidying is tedious (and seems pointless) and going to the toilet alone is a distant memory. Every aspect of life is more difficult.
Surprises are no longer exciting; it usually means an emergency nappy change/shower combo.
There is however nothing in this world I would swap this role for. Being a mama is the best thing I have ever done. All of the clichés are true!
“They grow up so fast”
“You will never know the love of the parent until you become a parent yourself”
“It’s the most rewarding job”
“Your life will never be the same.”
Whilst you feel exhausted and sometimes useless, what you achieve every day is amazing! Most parents I speak to undervalue their role and accomplishments. This blog is a tale of my trials and tribulations in my crash course in parenting. Tackling 100 jobs at once in the most demanding role of my lifetime whilst trying to be the best Mama I can be.
A lot of people also underplay how much we do as parents and how difficult day to day life is. If this happens to you all the time and you don’t know what to say back just give them a snippet of your day to day life. Here’s one of my favourite retorts.
All of this before 7 am and completed in just under 1 hour. All after having only 3 hours of broken sleep and this is just the start of your day!
If that still doesn’t convince them of how hard you work here is a list of just some of the roles and responsibilities I have gained as a mama.
Working 24 hours 7 days a week with long periods between breaks. Unlimited tea and coffee, however it may be cold before you get a chance to drink it.
If this was a real job spec, I don’t think there would be much interest!
It is a tough job but I love doing it!
One of the toughest things is being dismissed by employers because you are a parent. Certainly you have experience, knowledge, a vast array of skills. Of course you can perform under pressure. However, because it is sometimes a little difficult for you to conform to the normal 9-5 working week, some employers will overlook you.
I am however one of the lucky ones who has found an employer who is dedicated in helping parents return to work. I am gifted with the benefits of flexible working, ability to work from home and support and understanding from my Manager. In return this has enabled me to be more productive and dedicated than ever. I no longer stress about work but instead look forward to it.
My experience and knowledge is recognised and I feel like a valued part of the team instead of just a part time helping hand.
Unfortunately, some employers still don’t recognise your value or how much your skills have developed and perfected because of this new addition to your family. All they see is an obstacle and the inability to be dedicated.
With some flexibility, understanding and support, mothers returning to work can be an incredible and valuable addition to the workforce. Highly skilled, knowledgeable and just happy for the opportunity to have a wee and a coffee alone!
Imagine how much untapped talent is out there being wasted waiting for more employers to be accommodating. Full Picture Recruitment are dedicated to changing this by helping employers to understand the strength added from working parents and I’m proud to say I’m part of this education project.
If you want to learn more about how to adapt to incorporate parents as a valuable asset in your workforce, call us today on 01489 667 033.
Thanks for reading and remember, keep your Spirits high and when bedtime comes, drink them down.