Don’t worry. I’m not about to moan about being at stay at home mum, we all know the pay is crap, the hours are long and you have to hide in the toilet when you want to eat biscuits or chocolate (they don’t tell you that in the baby books).
But I’m happy with my lot and incredibly lucky to be able to stay at home.
The following is a basic job description from my previous career as a TV Producer.
Development – the conception of a programme idea.
Like real life conception this can be meticulously planned and researched or occur drunk in the back of a taxi.
Both have the same chance of success.
Pre production – office based organisation and planning.
Think of this as the pregnancy: everyone moans about it being hard work at the time but later events will make this feel like a holiday.
Production – location and/or studio shoot.
Painful, intense and stressful with lots of angry shouting, at least one person will cry.
Yes this is very much the giving birth part of the job. (If anyone requires stitches something has gone terribly wrong.)
Post production – editing the show.
Late nights and sleep deprivation, constant tedious ‘discussions’ with your partner/ editor about minutiae as you try to decipher why the baby commissioner is still not happy.
Congratulations, you have made some telly!
Nevertheless there are things I miss about my working life. Whatever job you do why not take time to enjoy a few today.
1. Easily accessible stationery.
Pens, pens everywhere! Marker Pens! Sharpies! (My favourite pen) Biros!
Pots of writing implements all over the blimmin’ place.
How fondly I remember the days when I could drop a chewed Bic onto the floor and not immediately have to scrabble under the desk to retrieve it.
I could just watch it roll into the cables and fluff safe in the knowledge that no one was going to find it and redesign the sofa with it.
The pens in our house are kept on a higher shelf than the knives which I suspect means I value my soft furnishings more than my children’s fingers.
2. Health & Safety.
One of the more glamorous and rewarding parts of being a TV Producer is filling in risk assessments before a shoot.
Essentially you have to imagine what things could go wrong on your shoot and write them all down until you have a 20 page document that reads like a Tom and Jerry script.
Then when a runner trips up over a cable after a 17 hour shift you have 7 copies of a document that says you definitely thought about not tripping people up.
Let’s face it at work the sole reason your employers are concerned with Health & Safety is because it’s like, part of the rules and stuff.
Now I am at home with two small children in a house entirely carpeted with plastic bricks and toy cars no one gives two shits about my Health & Safety.
I’m currently hunched over my laptop typing one fingered whilst breastfeeding a small child with sharp teeth.
Stick that in your workstation assessment.
3. Wearing nice clothes.
I never worked anywhere with a strict dress code but even in the media wearing someone else’s snot and puke stains all down your front would be considered unacceptable office attire.
If my baby son sees me wearing both clean clothes and make up he starts to cry, he has no idea who that person is.
4. Not singing.
I have done many, many embarrassing things at work.
I once jumped out of a giant pair of underpants dressed as a Morris Dancer.
But I never had to sing.
I am a terrible singer, even the mention of Karaoke sends my pelvic floor into spasm.
Now I am a mother of small children I am forced to sing, in public, on an almost daily basis.
And I hate it.
5. Rush hour.
God I miss being surrounded by people in a rush.
It’s not just commuting, everything that happens out of work hours happens at an infuriatingly.
Getting on the bus, getting off the bus, going shopping, buying coffee, ordering lunch -you’re not at work so you can damn well wait.
It’s as though I’ve been relocated to a Mediterranean country but without the sun and sexy waiters.
Which brings me onto….
6. Talking to men.
Don’t get me wrong women are wonderful creatures but they’re bloody everywhere when you have small children.
Even outside of the playgroups and playgrounds there is a distinct lack of male interaction in my life – it’s as if carrying small children makes you invisible to the opposite sex.
Either that or I’m really unattractive.
Probably a bit of both.
7. Drifting off in an important meeting.
Just to feel that tingle of panic when you realise have no idea what is going on around you anymore.
It’s not that I don’t still do this but these days when I lose concentration bad things happen.
I worked in television for 12 years and saw plenty of inappropriate office behaviour but I never snapped out of a daydream to find a poo on the floor (maybe if I’d worked on TOWIE…).