I am trying to write a short review on new materialistic approaches in Geography and the politics of feeding, and as such, have been reading a few articles on this, which as it happens, seems to be a hot debate at the moment…
– blue milk, on the ways the message of breastfeeding is conveyed. I love that it particularly pins down the difficulties I find in the notion of ‘choice’, individualism and patricarchy…
– A guest post in PhD in parenting on the debate generated recently on breastfeeding in public.
And then, something that relates to one of my daily struggles at the moment: to-do list vs being present with your child. Since I am mostly a full-time mom, I have to do things with r. around. I have always cooked and done some cleaning and ordering with her, but now it is also phonecall, fixing stuff in the house, clothes shopping (mainly for her!) and so on. We have recently moved houses and the house needs work, and I am in full nesting mode, so I want to do loads of things before the baby comes. So I find that I am itching to do things, to feel I have done ‘productive things’, and sometimes this means I see parenting as a chore more than something enjoyable, and on times like that, there is inevitably trouble, fights, and bad feelings. This post by Sew liberated on chucking the to-do list, really hit the spot for me.
Hope you enjoy these!
So what do you do?
I am a mum. Conversation killer, well, it could be a starter depending on who you talk to, but mostly a killer.
At the moment, I am not doing any waged work. I am trying to write articles from my PhD research, but nobody is paying me to do so. I went to a conference recently, but that’s about it. The rest of the time, I manage the house, and I am with r. Since last week, she is doing 3.30 hours at the Montessori. For the last two and a half weeks, she was settling in, which meant she was going one hour, and then extending it slowly by 15 minutes. And I was staying there, waiting for her. So it has only been a few days that I have had my three hours. And sometimes it is even less, if I take her in the mornings. Luckily, my partner has agreed to take her, but we are still working it out. So yes, mostly full-time mom.
We moved recently, so I am meeting people here and they ask, as anybody would ‘so what do you do? And I am struggling here. I feel the need to explain that I just finished my PhD, that I have done a little bit of consultancy since, but that at the moment I am a mum. But it does not seem enough to be a mum. I think that is quite crap to be honest. I feel like the waiters who shout at you that really, they are actors/comedians/students…but in reality, no, I‘m ‘really’ a mum, and very happy of being one, and hopefully, eventually, I will also have a paid job. But I struggle to just state that nonchalantly. I think these little instances, those uncomfortable moments when I say I am a mum and eyes glaze over, show the diminished view of motherhood, and the (invisible) work that it entails, which is as sorry a state as when working for a wage was shameful in my view…