#MoreThanAMutha is all about celebrating the things that women are, as well as being amazing mothers. In a world where many women feel like they lose their identity when they become a mum, it is important to celebrate and shout that we might be mums, but we are not only that and we are still a force to be reckoned with.
What makes you more than a mother?
I run a business, Beyond the Kitchen Table, which builds websites for start ups and small businesses. Many of my clients are women who are trying to build a business around their children.
Are people surprised when they realise you are more than a mum? Does that bother you?
No! I have always kept busy. I went back to working in the City after having my children (I was an MD in a US investment bank). When I quit my job I think people expected me to do something similar, perhaps working for a client. The move to work with small start ups and small businesses certainly surprised my City ex-colleagues. The budgets of my new clients are rather smaller than my old!!
What challenges do you face when you’re juggling motherhood and being more than a mutha? (childcare, judgements of others, time etc)
Childcare is certainly a challenge. My children are of school age and my husband will help, but he works up in London and I’m local, so the day to day responsibility (and the taking of forgotten kit to school) falls to me. That said, the ability to be around more and present in the lives of my children was one of the prime factors in making the switch. Sometimes (particularly the school holidays) it is a real juggling act though!!
How long did it take you to remember you were more than a mother after you had your child(ren)?
I went back to work when my children were about 9 months old (to my old job). I felt I needed more intellectual stimulation and an identity other than being someone’s mum. When the children were a bit older I decided I wanted to spend more time at home (and that time to be less stressful – my previous job was not 9 to 5) and spend more time with the children.
Who, or what, helps you to make time for yourself? What do you do to escape the stresses of motherhood?
School!! Whilst I love the holidays, I also love the routine of school days, waving them off knowing I have 6 hours without hearing “muuuummmm”…
In an evening I find wine and chocolate pretty good stress relievers!
What advice would you offer a mum who might not be feeling like they are more than someones mum right now?
Do something away from the children. Perhaps an exercise class somewhere with a crèche (or find a friend that will look after your children for a couple of hours and you take theirs another time). Or look at some kind of further education, volunteer somewhere or of course, start your own business.
Being a mum 24/7 is hard work – give yourself a break!
Any advice for someone who is going through the same things as you are right now in their quest to be #MoreThanAMutha?
If you want to do it, then go for it. But do it on your terms. Work out what your priorities are, what you want to achieve and what you are willing to compromise on.
If you are setting up your own business outsource where you don’t have the skills/time. Yes it will cost money but it is better to spend £100 on something than try to do it yourself it is going to take you 30 hours…