I’m thrilled to be able to launch the monthly Musing Mum ‘guest blog’ spot. I’ve been running the blog for nearly six months now and I’ve loved sharing my random ‘mum musings’ with you guys. Ever since launching, I have wanted to eventually use my little nook of the world-wide-web to help new parenting bloggers find their voice. It’s all about mamas supporting mamas in this store, baby!
So without further ado, I’d like to introduce you to gorgeous mama, Amy Powell, the first Musing Mum Guest Blogger.
The Guilt Factor – Amy Powell
How on earth do the Instamum set manage it? Perfect hair and make-up, suitably stylish clothes sans baby puke, children dressed in fresh white linen and a perfectly clean and insta-friendly home. I’m sure there’s witchcraft at play, as I consider myself to be winning if I shower in the morning – usually with at least one child declaring their indignance. Loudly.
I am of the school of thought that life’s too short to live in an immaculate home. Couple that with a severely messy husband and two children and what you have is a perpetual shit-tip. Generally we’re fine with it; it’s a happy and loving home. That doesn’t mean there isn’t always an element of guilt and frustration at the mess though, especially when you can see the opposite every day flicking through Instagram.
And these mums also manage to blog, too. This is the bit that gets me – I have wanted to blog for a long time and am finally finding the courage to go for it. The big technical hitch? Time. How do you find guilt-free writing time? I’m jiggling the baby on my lap whilst typing this with one hand, there’s about a month’s worth of washing up to be done and the laundry pile is threatening to overtake all remaining floor space. And this is during maternity leave. Yikes.
The easy thing would be to not bother; there’s no reason for me to blog other than for my own enjoyment. So it feels like a selfish use of time to sit trying to work out the ins and outs of a website, and frustrating too as I never seem to make any real progress. Frustration feeds the guilt – shouldn’t time with the babies be enough right now? There’ll be plenty of me-time one day and I’m dreading that!
What’s struck me over the past few weeks, though, is how much happier Louis and Phoebe are when I’m happy. Seems pretty obvious but I guess it’s taken me a while to catch on with that one. I’m usually one for lazy days in PJ’s but I don’t find sitting around said shit tip with a velcro baby hampering progress on the chores enjoyable in the least at the moment. Louis has reached an age where he’ll ask whether I’m cross and really up the bad-parent anxiety levels. I know you can’t be smiley all the time, but it’s good to have a little reminder that you might actually being a bit unreasonably crabby.
So in an effort to not sit around the flat feeling glum we have explored new places and enjoyed fab days out instead. While this isn’t helping the mess, we’re all happier and it gets the blog ideas flowing every time. We live in a beautiful part of the country and I want to write about our adventures. This will mean more fun days out for the kids and in all honesty I don’t think they care whether I’m washing up or writing when I get a spare moment, so I can perhaps ease up on the guilt on that front.
So while it feels selfish to want a project of my own I think it’s actually quite important, otherwise it’s literally all nappies, washing, failing at housework and feeling inadequate. The kids definitely benefit from a happier mum with more energy when I’ve had time to focus on something for me, even for ten minutes. We all need something that’s just for us, whether it’s a hot bath – sometimes my butt barely hits the bottom before I have to get out but it can still turn my mood around – or a quick walk around the block when your partner gets in. Do something for you and don’t feel guilty, you’ll all feel the benefit.