2 Mar 2014

Having it all?

As a *coughs* thirty-something, working mother, I often find myself asking that age-old question: can we really have it all? What does that even mean? When I'm getting a bit ranty about equality and feminism with my A Level classes, I see myself as a strong and strident professional role model. I choose to go to work, I read to my child every night and occasionally I even cook.
When I'm on my knees and a bit knackered, I curse those darn women who chucked themselves under regal racehorses. I have to go to work or we wouldn't be able to pay the mortgage. Four nights out of seven, the bedtime story is the only quality time I will have had with my boy. And the reality of my prowess in the kitchen is that I'm very good at opening packets and pricking holes in plastic lids: I heat.
I've 'lost balance' a bit this week. It's been a while since it happened, but some of those eternally spinning plates have been dropped.
You may be wondering where I am going with this post (to be honest, it's quite late - so am I). A photo of some party balloons renders my navel-gazing somewhat incongruous. Let me explain.
This morning, we went to a very lovely - and very lively - joint third birthday party. Dexter is currently in a social whirl of 'threenage' celebrations. There was music, dancing, balloons, stars, party food, cake, candles and coffee. After my second hot beverage, I caught my second wind with a plastic flute full of fizz. The boy had a ball.
Post-party, we went to the family-friendly pub around the corner from the party venue with two other families: connections forged at the ante-natal class we all attended three years ago. We ate pizza, the mums drank some wine, the toddlers played and the dads paid. Just at the point where our pre-children afternoon would have morphed into papers, pints and the possibility of football on the big screen, we cleared the decks, said our goodbyes and went our separate ways.
Back at home, there was some telly, some tea, bath time and 'Burglar Bill'. I've drunk lots of herbal tea, done some marking and had a hot bath. Mr W has been tackling the over-flowing washing basket. I hope to be asleep by eleven, ready for the brutal six o'clock alarm call and some more plate-spinning...
This weekend, I've pootled, I've partied, I've passed some time in the pub and I've put in the time with my family, my friends and my work. I've re-grouped. I guess you could say in a funny sort of way, I've had it all.

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