Evening all. Jenny here, and for this week’s blog I’m keeping things topical by sharing my thoughts on a ‘news’ article that caught my eye this week.
My first thought was, who is Lauren Goodger?
If you were at all interested she’s listed on Wikipedia as being a television personality, glamour model, beautician, media personality and columnist. That’s technically five ‘careers’ that Lauren will definitely drop like a hot potato when she has children. Yes that’s a ‘when’.
At present Lauren doesn’t have any children. She hasn’t ‘enjoyed’ childbirth. She hasn’t known what it is to be awake for seemingly days on end or to worry that you’re doing it all wrong. Yet she felt herself well qualified to weigh in on this really tricky issue sharing her thoughts that mothers who pursued their own careers were selfish.
I’m not an idiot. I recognise this for the low level attempt to raise her profile that it is. What’s that saying? “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” And in a way perhaps she’s a genius as she’s certainly got her name all over the press as a result. But personally I really struggle with messages like this. Unfortunately you do still hear this sort of thing from time to time. There can be equal criticism of working mums and stay at home mums and it’s just really sad.
I gave up my first career as a primary school teacher to relocate to Torquay when I had Isabelle and Edward. I won’t lie, it’s been a very busy 5 years and I know that there’s no way I could have carried on teaching full time and been a mum without completely losing the plot. I’ve never regretted that decision…. until recently. Sometimes I look at my husband, whose career has gone from strength to strength and promotion over the same 5 years, and I resent that mine hasn’t. It frustrates me that I don’t contribute equally to our mortgage or outgoings and I can’t just buy what I want anymore.
However (and there’s always a however isn’t there), I’ve seen every milestone, every first, been there for every illness and every event in my children’s lives so I think that for me, I’ve probably made the right decision. And those are two very important words in this debate, FOR ME.
When Edward turned one I joined the Music with Mummy family which for me provides the best of both worlds. I still get to work with children – which I absolutely love, and I get to fit my hours around my own babies. I think I also need the stimulation of interacting with other adults, to catch up, have a laugh and hear all your parenting successes and failures. It’s also a good challenge for my brain, planning how to keep ten busy pre-schoolers busy and interested, learning and having fun each week.
Everyone has to make the decision about working based on their own feelings, desires, financial situation and happiness. For some there’s more choice than others but ultimately we each have to reach some sort of decision. It’s really hard and nobody, absolutely nobody gets to have it all. All I ask is that we respect and support each other instead of sitting in judgement.
As for Lauren…. I’m looking forward to seeing how that goes for her. If she does become a mum my money’s on her publishing a celebrity parenting book. I won’t lie, I won’t be buying it!