Dol in LA: Being a Stay at Home Mum

Dolores and her girls in Los Angeles. (Photo from her Instagram)
Musings of a mum abroad. Chief Mummy, DOLORES AU, shares her thoughts about being a Stay at Home Mum - for now.
Mothers for life

The last time a well-meaning but totally ill-informed single chap said being a mother is a “full time job”, he got an earful from a hormonal, insomniac mum of five girls – me.

I know what a job is: I have been in jobs since I was 13 and jobs come with perks, financial rewards and yes, pain. But it’s pain that you can walk away from. Motherhood? Uh-uh, you are stuck with it for life.

Of course, there are situations that make one mum different from another. I am lucky to have the privilege of choice – something I had to work really hard for in my younger days.

At this point in my life, I can choose to NOT be a stay-at-home-mum and have a semblance of a career. I’ve always been in professions that allow me to wear the prettiest work clothes and heels, with the occasional hair and nails done. I can choose to attend a dinner meeting after work, leaving the munchkins with the nannies, and work hard over steaks and champagne – poor me. #firstworldproblems

Work vs being a SAHM

At work, I can e-scream at someone rather than shouting at munchkins to flush the evidence after they’re done. Additionally, because I work so hard, I reward myself with holidays, shopping, dining and drinking with my fellow working mummies. Meanwhile, other SAHMs treat themselves to a much-needed solitude of a warm bath and a glass of wine.

With all due respect to mums who must work, work can be a bitch. I know – been there, done that as a single mum for years. However, between working now and being a SAHM, I would choose the former any day. It’s just me: the cop-out mum. 

I am not proud to be a cop-out mum but you see, I am very clear that I have chosen the easy way of mothering. While the helper changes nappies, tackles midnight feeds, cooks and cleans, I spend “quality time” with the children. The privilege and freedom to be able to choose how I want to mother is not lost on me.

The challenges of transitioning into a SAHM

Especially in the last two weeks since moving to Los Angeles and facing a little helper and nanny crisis. I consciously chose the existence of a SAHM, even though I could have placed the kids in half-day childcare. I just felt it was time I stepped out of my comfort zone and suck it up, while saving some money in the meantime. It was like being in an intensive bootcamp. 

I haven’t slept through a single night, since I’ve had to take the 4yo to the loo. She is on the no-diapers milestone right now. Additionally, I haven’t completed a single no.2 in the loo alone. That’s because there’s always one munchkin trying to break the door down or crying outside the door. I don’t even dare to look at my leg hairs since I haven’t had the energy to look for my shavers.

Self-pity aside, all I know is, I love you all SAHMs and I think it’s one of the most difficult roles. You all have my absolute admiration and anytime anyone wants to hang out with this “cop-out mum”, happy to buy drinks! 

Relevant Reads: Check out how Dolores battled with HFMD overseas and our favourite mum hacks to make parenting just that little bit easier.

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