My 8 year old Izzy said to me yesterday “You never play with us, all you do is clean”
To put into context the kids had been asking when would daddy be home from work so they had someone to play with.
Now all who know me, know I do enjoy a good clean! I’ve always been a tidy person but more so since having kids.
It started when Poppy was born and people would randomly drop in to see the baby. The thought of my house being messy as well as me looking like I was losing my mind with a newborn was enough to make me clean our tiny house daily.
Now, fast forward 9 years I have gained 2 more kids, a dog, 5 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms, a playroom and a garage – that my kids use as their bonus playroom.
So, my cleaning takes slightly longer than the hour I’d spend on our old 2 up 2 down with a static baby!
I clean to make sure we are organised as a family, to try and erase germs, to create a calm atmosphere or because I’m stressed – try it, it works wonders!
Now during this long summer holiday I’ve dropped the amount I clean by at least 50% but the kids see me do it and occasionally they have to sit and not take out toys whilst I do it. Poor kids 😂
What they don’t know is the 9 months of the year they are at school I break my back to ensure all the cleaning, laundry, cooking, grocery shopping, organising etc is done before the school day finishes.
I never sit, I don’t drink tea and watch trash tv, most days I don’t even eat lunch.
I want to be there once the kids are out of school. ‘There’ may be on the edge of a field watching cheer or football or I may just be sat at the end of the drive watching the cul de sac crew playing.
So even though I do my ‘chores’ while the kids are out they still have the perception that all mummy does is clean? How do we as mummy’s ensure our kids see us the way we want them too?
I want mine to see me as being ‘there’ right now I don’t work – my time is theirs.
I’d like them to see me looking after them, feeding them and loving them.
The mummy who sings badly in the car and the shower.
The mummy that loves them and their daddy.
I know I’m not the one that plays karate or pokemon- that’s daddys job. However it is me that crafts, that lets them help cook, assists with homework, gives them role play ideas, takes them to activities and sports. I’m not just the cleaner.
The morning after I started drafting this post Izzy hit her nose and made it bleed (with her tablet – we’ve all been there!) At the time there were 4 adult family members in the house. It was mummy she cried for and needed me to look after and console her.
I think that in itself shows even if I do clean a bit too much the ‘cleaner’ is a pretty insignificant part of my mummy role.
So I’ll keep mumming the way I am. We have 3 happy healthy kids. Rob and I as parents work well together, between the 2 of us our kids get everything they need.