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Christie Hayes: 'The four unexpected things I miss most about being a stay-at-home mum.'

Time flies when you’re having fun… or so they say. Because it doesn’t fly when you’re a stay-at-home mum. No matter how much joy my children bring me, as a stay-at-home, the days are long.

Let me just put this disclaimer out there, my children are my world and some days fly and there is not a place I would rather be.

I entered stay-at-home-motherhood with the intention of having as much time as I could with my boys for a few years and then focusing on work.

Don’t get me wrong, I do believe you can have it all. I just don’t think you can have it all at the same time. Could I be the mother I, in my dreams want to be, while working? No. Can I be the person I want to be, while staying at home with my children? No.

So, this week I went back to full-time work in radio.

Our family is fortunate enough that my husband can now work from home and care for the children whilst I’m out, and I feel like this is my chance to find myself again. I’ll admit it’s easy to lose yourself. A stay-at-home parent knows that.

On that note, my heart hurts. As I come to the end of this period in my life (unless ratings fail) I am reflective of how much I will miss being a stay-at-home mother.

This is a note to my children and the four things I will miss the most while working and not home with them.

1) Morning park playdates.

This one surprised me. Mostly because taking my boys to our park is never a walk in the park. They’re one and two, so they run off in opposite directions and never listen to my pleading to come back. I run back and forth – totally counts as my daily exercise right? – and make jokes with all the other parents there.

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As I come to think of these moments over the last couple of years I close my eyes and see our memories.

I remember the first time my boys went on a swing, how they lit up with the purest of delight. I remember the sunrises we saw due to ridiculously early starts, I remember the beautiful, intimate conversations I’ve had with other parents because we mothers seem to open up to each other pretty quickly. I remember the solace I found, being among others who were doing this parenting thing. Even if we didn’t always speak.

???? Let’s get Physical, Physical Freezing getting Physicaaalllll

A photo posted by C H R I S T I E H A Y E S (@christiehayes_) on

I also remember the look in my babies’ eyes as they explored their own world, and the pride I felt. All at the park. Who would have thought the park would be a place so wonderfully ingrained in my memories? I didn’t. I do now.

2. Witnessing their relationship evolve.

At first Hendrix didn’t want a bar of Harley. He was only 11 months old when he became a big brother and to this day is a tad weary of him. There is a love and familiarity between the two; however, they are still at the stages of establishing their own boundaries and worlds.

These worlds turn if one has something the other wants, or God forbid, one of them is in mummy’s arms and the other one isn’t. Shit gets real then. It’s extremely loud and incredibly close.

However, as they have gotten older I’ve been privy to moments I will forever cherish. The nightly baths they share. A gentle smile, a laugh, or clapping together.

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There’s also the biting, crying, slapping and pushing over, which ultimately is a sign of siblinghood, a bond they are lucky to share.

Missing these moments, in a rather large capacity is going to be tough. I want to be there for it all, the cuddles, the kisses, the fists and the it’s-the-end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it-screams.

Sunday turning on the ????

A photo posted by C H R I S T I E H A Y E S (@christiehayes_) on

3. Being there when they wake up in the mornings.

For two years, I’ve heard it. And you know exactly what I mean. You’ve heard it too. You might even swear because you’re exhausted and it’s earlier than usual but like it or not, THEY ARE AWAKE.

Which means, so are you. And you’re not lying in bed feeling fresh and wonderful, pondering the day ahead or having blueberry pancakes on 1000-thread count sheets.

You’re up. You turn the kettle on and go into the babies’ room, and you see it. This beautiful, jumping, happy, gorgeous little person of yours. He’s joyous, smiling, he’s being cheeky and might even hide under the dooner. Because he knows. He knows “Mummy or Daddy are here, I am okay, and we are going to have the best-est day ever!!!”

This one hurts.

Peek-a-boo with Gene Simmons ????

A photo posted by C H R I S T I E H A Y E S (@christiehayes_) on

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It breaks my heart, my bones ache and I begin to question everything. I cannot fathom that I will not be the first face my sons see of a morning. I won’t see them and they won’t see me.

The guilt kicks in. They won’t understand Mummy is at work, that I love them and I am coming home. That I will speak about them to everyone in the building who will let me, and Mummy is working so we can eat yummy food and have warm clothes.

I leave the house at 4am for work now, which means that during the week, I won’t ever be there with them first thing- that’s hard to take.

4. Being there to comfort them when they need me.

Not much needs to be said for this one.

When the tiny human you created (or adopted or care for, or found by marriage) cries. All bets are off. There is nothing I would not do to eradicate any pain my boys feel. When they cry and I pick them up, I hold their quivering little body against my chest, I kiss them on their soft foreheads and I tell them that Mummy is here and everything will be okay. That is what being a parent is, isn’t it?

Listen: The Glorious Mess team discuss all things parenting.

Doing everything to ensure your children do not feel pain. I will miss that and I hate imagining the moments I am not there to comfort them. Especially because they don’t understand why. Yes, Daddy is there and they’ll live and everything will be okay until we are reunited and be what we are – three men and the little lady. However, they are growing up so fast and our time together as we were has passed. And I wasn’t ready for it. I am just a mum and my job is to cuddle and kiss and soothe. I will miss that more than I could’ve imagined.

I thank my lucky stars for my dream job, my family and my healthy boys, but it’s like Steven says: “I miss you baby, and I don’t wanna miss a thing.”

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