I’m a ‘millennial mum’. So the media tell me anyway. Loosely translated, that means I’m one of the many mums out there that was born between 1978-1994. We’re tech savvy, we’re successful, influential…. and apparently really good at complaining how hard we have it!
Hands up, I am usually one of the first to join the chorus of how hard it is raising a family nowadays – from criminal childcare costs and the pressure of being a ‘yummy mummy’ to how insanely PC parenting has become. It’s Gingerbread PERSON don’t you know!
No one can deny that parenting is HARD, whatever era we are talking about. Whilst some things will never change, (the lack of sleep, the poo obsession, teething screams, the milk-sick stained clothes….) each decade brings new challenges for parents. But also new opportunities. The truth is, I would much rather be a Mummy now than in my Mum’s day. She is always pointing out the things that she wishes she had. So today, I am taking a moment from complaining to celebrate a few reasons as to why being a mum in 2015 is pretty great:
- Trendy maternity clothes: Have you seen the maternity bras in H&M? Practical support and drop cups for feeding, but with pretty lace details. LACE! And what about those heavenly elasticated tailored maternity jeans (that I bet you STILL wear every now and then after a big meal…or is that just me?). A mother’s life before those would just have involved shapeless smocks and Houdini style bra tricks to whip your boob out of a parachute.
- Maternity leave – My mum took 3 weeks off when having me. I was very lucky to be able to take 10 months off for Maia. Six for Harrison. That’s not a reality for everyone in this day and age I know, but living in an era of maternity law, flexible working opportunities and additional paternity leave really is worth celebrating right?
- Cleaning Cheats: I am pro anything that speeds up or de-grosses cleaning. Hurrah for the steam mops. Three cheers for the vacuum space saver bags. God bless Febreeze after a nappy change and the stink free nappy bins. Next stop is the Robot hoover – the dream. Surely someone is already on the case for self-cleaning bottles?
- Compact Breast Pumps – I sucked at breastfeeding with Maia. It’s bloody hard isn’t it? With Harrison, I had the Medela Swing Electric Breast Pump – a god send. It filled me with confidence – and filled our freezer full of ready to go milk, meaning I even got to go away for the odd night in the early months. Over to you Dad.
- Google- Who knew that newborn girls have periods? Well Google did. Thank god! One quick search re: blood in nappies in their first few days and I was reassured. Cancel the ambulance! Seriously though, what would we do without this all-knowing tool. I know, I know, we could go out and speak to other mothers like our parents did, but that would mean getting washed, dressed and out of our pj’s…..anyway, there are all these wonderful mummy bloggers out there now for that!
- iPhone – of course the iPhone has to make my list. Could you imagine living in a time where you couldn’t just tap an app to play white noise or ocean sounds to get baby to sleep? A time before you could call on the YouTube app for an emergency Peppa Pig distraction? A time where there wasn’t an app to remind you which boob you last fed out of….? Yes, there’s even an app for that
- There’s probably also a class for it too! From swimming, yoga and baby sign, to mandarin, tots gymnastics (see Maia on the high bar, right) and tots rugby, you have your pick of activities for little ones today. Sure, there are those who say we are over-scheduling our kids, but I say, amen to all these options. Sometimes, just sometimes, playing mum gets dull and needs a refresh! It’s great to have such a wealth of different activities to pick from. You don’t have to do them all! Just a few every now and then to fuel their little imaginations. And yours.