The summer holidays are nearly here and everyone’s getting excited about 6 weeks of no school runs and fun days out. Except for working mums.
The school holidays when you’re a working mum are a new experience – if anything I find them more stressful than term time.
Here’s my experience of summer holidays when you’re a working mum…
No lie-ins or lazy mornings for us. If anything we have to get up earlier in the school holidays so that we have time to get to holiday club or the grandparents’ before starting work.
Arranging childcare for the holidays is a nightmare. I’ve spent hours making sure that every day is accounted for and Little H has somewhere to go. We’re lucky to have great parents who help out, but coordinating everything is hard work.
Expensive Holiday clubs
Both sets of grandparents are in their 60’s now so we can’t make them look after Little H for too many days in a row. This means that we sign her up for holiday club for some of the time as well, which luckily she loves. At £30 per day, she’d better love it, we could have another holiday with the amount we pay!
Working from Home
Being able to work from home sounds like a great plan – no morning rush, no childcare expenses, you get to see your child. Yeah right, don’t do it! You’ll get hardly any work done as you’ll be asked questions all day, the kids will moan that they’re bored, they’ll try to steal your laptop, and you’ll feel bad for ignoring them while you try to work. It’s actually easier to go into the office.
No Play dates
The school mums are all making dates to meet up over the holidays to let the kids play and have days out together, but when you’re a working mum your child has to miss out. I don’t particularly mind not meeting up, but I do feel sorry for Little H that he school friends will see each other over the summer and she won’t be involved.
Feeling guilty is a bit of theme over the summer. Guilty that they’re missing out on time with you, and time with their friends. Guilty that you’re palming them off on other people all the time, and rushing around every morning to get them where they need to be bright and early.
Everywhere is busy in the summer holidays, but down here in Poole/Bournemouth the weekends are absolutely crazy with tourists. Only being able to do things at the weekend means that we tend to avoid the beaches and other local attractions as it’s just too busy.
But on the plus side…
We probably enjoy the time we do get to spend with our kids more than the poor frazzled SAHMs. And our kids can’t exactly complain that they’re bored when they are being spoiled by grandparents all summer or making new friends at holiday club can they?!
Do you find summer holidays more stressful than term time?