August 2, 2015

Here is a typical day in the life of a single, working from home, mum…

5:30am

Baby’s crying. Is he cold? Don’t tell me he’s hungry already. OK, OK, I’m up. Bottle – in. Blissful silence.

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5:40am

OK, now you want to play. Really? No. No, Mama’s going back to bed. No playing. OK, well play quietly then. Sigh, I’ll just put the pillow over my head.

6:30am

“Mummy, it’s morning time now.” Hmm – what? Ah, Miss 3 is awake. “Go away, the sun’s not up yet. Come back when you can see the sun.” That alarm clock was a waste of money.

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7:40am

Aargh, I’m late. Need to get the kids up, dressed, fed and off to daycare. Great, Baby’s asleep again. And where’s Miss 3?

“Hello, Mummy, I made a river!”

Aargh. “Darling what did you do????” Carpet is soaked, water everywhere, thank goodness I moved my papers last night.

“I got the floor wet, Mummy, but it’s all right. The fire will dry it.”

“Well it’s not really alright, dear, you need to be more careful.” Furiously mopping, but I don’t really have time. “Alright, come here and let me get you dressed. DON’T run away!” Gaaaa.

8:00am

“OK, I’m going to have a shower.”

“But Mummy, you forgot to get my weetbix.”

“I’ll get it in a minute, I want to have my shower before Baby wakes up.”



8:00-8:20am

Blissful, shower interlude. Sounds of activity coming from lounge, but I determinedly ignore it.

Uh-oh, now Baby’s crying.

8:40am

Baby and Miss 3 are dressed, time to get breakfast.

Take prepacked lunch from fridge, pack day care bags, put cereal in bowls, add milk – “not too much, Mummy!” – sit down with Baby and try to feed him while he tries to flick the food off the spoon with one hand and grab the bowl with the other, to the sound track across the table of, “This piece is yucky, Mummy. This piece is pooey. Uh-oh, I dropped some milk on my trousers, waaaa!”

8:55am

Late again. Wrangle Baby and day care bags into car, come back for Miss 3 – “Mummy, you left me behind!” – come back again for Baby’s bottles and my shoes, come back again for car keys.

9:20am

Kids are dropped off at day care and I’m driving home feeling strangely light hearted. Bad mother. Don’t care.

9:30-10:30am

Household jobs. Whizz around emptying dishwasher, putting away laundry, getting wood for the fire. Make cup of tea and head into the study.

10:30-11:30am

Emails, phone calls, social media, writing ambitious to-do list, writing realistic to-do list. Hmm, I’m hungry.

11:35am

Lunch. So what if it’s early. Now back to work.

11:45am-4:30pm

Write, write, write. Research. Record podcast. Increasingly frequent glances at clock. Nearly time to get the kids. Got to get this done first….

4:55am

Ahh, am late to get kids. Also meant to cook dinner and pick up library book. Will give them eggs on toast. Drive to day care.

5:05pm

“Come here and put on your shoes, we have to go. Thanks, see you tomorrow!”

Drive home. “Did you have a nice day at day care?” “NUFFIN.” “Okay. What did you have for lunch?” “NUFFIN. Mummy, can I have chocolate cake for tea?”

5:20-6:00pm

Dinner. Baby’s crying, too tired to eat really. Miss 3’s crying, doesn’t want to eat. “You don’t have to, but if you don’t stop crying you can go to bed right now.” Crying stops, temporarily. Get Baby into bed, where he suddenly perks up and starts playing and singing. Sigh. Leave him to it.

6:15pm

Oops, meant to give them a bath. Will do it tomorrow. “Miss 3, you have fifteen more minutes.”

“Hold on, Mummy, I’m just taking Dolly to the shops.” “OK, come back in fifteen minutes.” “I will.”

Tidy kitchen. Pack lunch bags. Eat uneaten lunch food. Sneak back into study to finish last few sentences.

6:45pm

“Alright, Miss 3, time for bed.” “Hold on, Mummy, I’m just busy right now.” “Right now, Miss 3. Quick sticks.”

Clean teeth. “Say ‘Aaaah.’” “Eeee. Hahahahaha.” Sigh.

Read stories. Miss 3 goes to the toilet. “Mummy, maybe if my trousers are dry, tomorrow I can have chocolate cake.” “Maybe.”

Turn music on. “Mummy, wait, I’ve got something to tell you.” “What, honey?” “I need you to be with me. Give me some pats.” “OK, just a few pats, then I have to go and have my tea.”

Sneak out and hope for the best.

7:00pm

Eat dinner, tidy up, chat to mum who’s watching murder mysteries. Get chocolate pudding and take it to bed with me to eat in front of TV. Think I should get some more work done but decide to watch Masterchef episodes instead.

9:45pm

Should have stopped reading earlier. Better get Baby up for a bottle or he’ll want one at midnight. Get Miss 3 up for another wee. Back to bed, let’s see how much sleep I get before the first interruption.

11:40pm

“Mummy, I don’t want to sleep in my room. There are shadows.”

Sigh. “Come on then. Don’t you wake Baby.” “I wunt.”

Snuggle. Zzzz…

Does this day sound familiar to other single mums out there? Please SHARE in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

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  • Great article! Sheesh, non stop!!!! Go you!

    Reply


  • typical day

    Reply


  • You have to laugh otherwise you’ll just cry….hectic, hectic, hectic!! Well done to you.


    • Yup – we don’t wanna cry! And it’s certainly never boring!

    Reply


  • That’s a busy day! It’s so true when they say a mums day doesn’t end, it’s even longer when you’re a working mum. I applaud you for taking it on


    • Thank you, but I guess those are the decisions we make! For some reason, we feel driven to have it all.

    Reply


  • Oh yes! Typical day in the life of a mum with small children, flat out from start to finish. And she works from home too :0 hats off to you!


    • Thank you! At least I’m comforted by the fact I can work in my slippers all day!

    Reply


  • Single parenting is so challenging at times!

    Reply


  • hectic schedule u have !!


    • Very true, but it is also lots of fun. Don’t know how child carers and teachers do it though, on-call for kids for such long periods of the day. They’re amazing.

    Reply


  • Sounds like the perfect life if you have children. Lots of work but you’re right there fit workand gif the kids


    • Perfect in some ways for sure, but other times you find yourself feeling that you’re not giving your best to anything, your attention is so split. Then I guess there’s no such thing as a perfect life!

    Reply


  • a day in the life

    Reply


  • wish I could have worked from home – distractions or not… love the concept!


    • Yes I know, the ability to work in your pjs and get food from your own fridge is truly wonderful :)

    Reply


  • Single motherhood is so challenging I applaud all the single mums out there

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  • I’ve got four children and although I’m not a single mum, I can certainly relate to some of this routine, especially the morning wake up ritual and night time wakings. (Somehow kids only want mum at night, never dad). I love your description of the “River” incident. My worst possibly timed wake up call was “dolly had a pooey bum” – material rag doll, carpet, rental house inspection due same morning, brand new BIG tub of zinc nappy cream EVERYWHERE, interrupted only by clumps of baby wipes and unrolled toilet paper.


    • aargh! I feel your pain :) Good thing kids are so cute, really, for their own survival!

    Reply


  • Well done to all the single mums out there.

    Reply


  • Not a single mum but sounds very familiar!


    • Haha, yes I’m sure that most at-home parents can relate to this!

    Reply


  • So familiar – lucky these days are past now, but other problems still intrude.


    • Yes, I’m sure that problems only change with time, they don’t just suddenly disappear! Oh, well, without change I guess we’d stagnate!

    Reply

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