So in less than two weeks time I will officially be re-entering the world of full time working - my maternity leave drawing to a swift close.
I've been off work for 8 months but working, in some capacity, for most of that - be it writing my column, writing my novels or trying to generate publicity. (And contrary to the beliefs of the husband who does actually exist - it is in fact 'work' - not a hobby, or an interest. It doesn't stop being work just because I enjoy it...)
But in two weeks time I'm back to the 9-5 (or the 9-6) and that means, if you believe all you read in the papers my darling children are hooped. I might as well buy them extra large clothes just now and start stocking up on supplies of insulin and burgers (or something).
Now, this is where I get annoyed. And I know there are those out there who say that the article is actually useful research and will maybe prompt the government to accept that mothers have a valuable role to play in the home (ha ha ha ha ha ha ha..... yes, I thought that was funny too) but the truth is it just feels like another stick to beat working mothers with.
We do our best. I have to work, if I'm to put any food (healthy or otherwise) on my childrens' table. If I want to pay for football club or swimming lessons, or buy a new bike or scooter then I HAVE TO WORK. If I want my child to benefit from such basics as a roof over his/her head, clean clothes and shoes that fit then I HAVE TO WORK.
And I have to work long hours. The industry I work in is not famed for its family friendly approach to working - and while my bosses are as accommodating as possible, I still have to work round deadlines and publication slots and such things and that means I can't walk to school in the mornings. (I chose a school close to my work so I could be there for my son if he needed me during the day - and that means school is 5 miles from our house so not the average morning stroll anyway). It means I can't be home at 4.30 to prepare an organic feast and that I'm not always available for a trip to the park for a run-a-round.
But I (and the husband who does exist) do the best we can to provide a healthy and well rounded upbringing for our children.
So how about these researchers turn their attentions away from working mothers for a change and instead research the impact of a government which does not financially support the right of a mother (or father) to stay at home and parent their children?
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