Posted in Parenting

Just Another Day At The Office

It’s 2pm on a Tuesday afternoon and I’m reflecting on a relatively calm morning over a strong cup of tea.

This morning’s appointment with the doctor to discuss my 4-year-old’s follow-up treatment, after breaking his arm, went extremely well and since then the kids have played beautifully and have generally been little angels.

Just then the phone rang.  It was a pleasant-sounding lady from the Fracture Clinic requesting that I bring my son in straight away.

“What, now?” I replied with a slightly panicked tone.

“Yes, let’s say half past two shall we?” the lady said.

I agreed, hung up the phone and it was all stations GO!

Cup of tea chucked down sink; Shoes found for kids; Raincoats? Found one for toddler but not for the boy. Damn – I can’t get his cast wet either … one of his father’s will have to do. 

Snacks and drinks were put in my bag and medical notes were located.  I then plugged the address into the GPS and we were off.

I found the x-ray place easily and even snapped up an undercover car park.  I glanced at the clock in the car which read 2:25 – this is too good to be true!

The toddler had fallen asleep however, so with her slung over my shoulder and the little man in tow we headed inside.

I found reception quickly and told the lady my son’s name.  She then looked at me blankly and suddenly the penny dropped – with a bang! 

I was at the x-ray clinic in Charlestown when I was supposed to be at the Fracture Clinic in New Lambton Heights – CRAP!

I couldn’t believe I had gone to the wrong place.

I then apologised to the lady behind the desk, traipsed the kids back to the car and explained that Mummy had stuffed up.

Oh well, I guess I couldn’t break with tradition and actually be on time for something!

I now realised that I didn’t have an actual address for the clinic and was going to have to wing it – which for somebody with no direction sense whatsoever, was a tall order!

However, by some miracle, we found the building and a car park across the road.

The toddler was still asleep, so once again was on my shoulder with the wounded soldier trailing behind in his father’s raincoat – which finished just above his ankles and was at least 3 times the width of his 4-year-old frame.

Now came the fun part:

We were in the doctor’s office and I was trying to console my son who was freaking out after seeing the wires poking out of his flesh, while at the same time struggling to contain my daughter who was having a field day exploring all the buttons and strange objects in the vicinity.

At one point the doctor must have noticed the frazzled expression on my face and reached for the lollipop jar.

“Thank you,” I sighed as he passed me two over.

Hurriedly, I removed the wrapper and my son’s lollipop fell onto the floor.   

“No germs here, it’s a hospital after all,” I said while reaching out to give my son his lollipop back.

Looking horrified, the doctor quickly intercepted the lollipop and threw it in the bin.

“This is a hospital! he said sternly. “There is nothing but germs here!”

Mummy stuffed up again.

We then headed to the x-ray room where the toddler thought she had hit the jackpot when she saw the machines and my poor boy was desperately trying to keep his arm still while crossing his legs and jiggling around because he ‘needed to do wees.’

Of course he did … Perfect timing!

On to the plaster room where my toddler suddenly transformed into a monkey and climbed up my back and onto my shoulders, while my 4 year old sat on my knee so I could keep him still – Go figure!

Finally we were done and the 3 Musketeers headed back out into the torrential rain and rush hour traffic.

What an afternoon!

Luckily, once we arrived home things quickly improved:

Kids put to bed; Chinese takeaway devoured for dinner and a good chick flick viewed (‘I Don’t Know How She Does It’ starring Sarah Jessica Parker).

Slowly I felt the stress seep out of my body and once again I was ready to face another day at the office!




Posted in Parenting

The “luxurious” life of a stay-at-home Mum

A while ago I was amongst a group of Mums.  There was a mixture of stay-at-home Mums and those who juggled work and raising children.

One of the women piped up and said that she “wished she had a the luxury of staying at home with her kids.” 

Now, I know this was a harmless comment, and one which many women have also made, but the wording annoyed me. 

Did she say “luxury?” I thought.  Surely not!  Does she really think it is ‘luxurious’ staying at home looking after your kids?  Trying to do anything for yourself, whether it be a haircut, shopping, a much-needed eyebrow shape or just a shower by yourself is like trying to climb Everest with a broken foot – near impossible!   

This idea that we sit at home drinking coffee and watching soap operas gets my blood boiling – I wish!  Maybe if we all had a paid cook, cleaner and nanny I might accept the notion, but for the every day stay-at-home Mum this is far from the truth.

I believe it is a great gift for your children to have Mum at home until they reach school age, however I realise that this is not a possibility for many families out there.  It is just too expensive to raise a family for a lot of people on one income and then the Mother (or Father, in some cases) whether they want to or not, have to be in paid employment.

And I am sure that is what this particular woman really meant to say – “I wish I could afford to stay at home with my kids.”

I also realise that some women simply don’t want to stay at home all the time and would rather split their time between work and home-life or work full-time. 

It’s really for every family to decide what’s best for them and what will work in their situation. 

I guess then the point of this ramble is to try to illustrate the important job a stay-at-home Mum has and for society to get with the programme and realise this.

What kind of message does it send when your kids go to pre-school and you get told that if you are a working Mother you automatically get half of the fees refunded but if you are a stay-at-home Mum – No sorry, nothing for you!

Oh, but if you study you can have a rebate too! 

I think it’s great that working Mums and those up-skilling are getting some help with pre-school fees – but don’t you think us stay-at-home Mums could do with a rebate too? 

So next time you come across a stay-at-home Mum – give her a big pat on the back and say WELL DONE YOU!!