And yet, for every yin there is, of course, a yang. I also don’t get a monthly salary. I get frustrated. I run out of energy and ideas for keeping everybody entertained and fed. I shout a lot. My fragile hormones are exposed daily in public as I wrestle another child out of another toy shop. And there is one other down side to my new role in life which I wasn’t even aware of until last week.
Attending the information evening at the primary school my son will join in September, I was passed a pile forms to complete. This was fine until I came to a section titled ‘Occupation’. I hesitated. This was the first time I'd been asked to state my occupation since losing my job last year and I didn’t know what to write. ‘Unemployed’ seems so bleak and maybe I’m still in denial about that bit. Anyway, technically, I’m not unemployed because I do have a job; I’m a Stay At Home Mum. I’m not ashamed of it. Not in the slightest, but ‘Stay At Home Mum’ seems like a made-up job title. So, I reverted to tradition and entered, ‘Housewife’. And there it was in black and white, staring me in the face; I have become my mother.
The next day, I was talking to a friend about this. “Why didn’t you put down your other occupation?” she asked. “You’re a writer aren’t you?” D’oh. Of course. Why didn’t I think of that. I am a writer and although part of me doesn’t quite believe it enough yet to fill it in on a form, that is what I am. I’m a writer who stays at home to look after her children.
Phew, I now know what I am. So, the next time I’m faced with a box to fill in, I know exactly what to write. ‘Writer, Mother and soon to be internationally published best-selling author’. Hey, we can all dream, can’t we?