As a stay at home mum of seven and one that has had to be a single parent for most of my married life (almost 18 years) due to my husband having to work away from home or the occasional trip abroad, one would say that I probably do lack culture and many lifetime experiences.
Bringing up a family and having children is not something you can read about in a national geographic magazine or learn by traveling the world. It takes countless wrongs and rights, ups and downs, success and failures, determination, awareness, sadness, grief and teamwork. No degree or educational course can prepare you for parenthood – NONE whatsoever. It requires experience that no parent has and in fact it isn’t fully learnt until after the children leave home and even then, I have my doubts on the subject.
And by all means eating at different restaurants will not open your horizons when it comes to bringing up a family; in fact it will teach you to avoid these venues as much as possible when you have smaller aged children.
Of course in my defense, I even told her that I have had plenty of culture in my home, as it has known to have grown……..in and around my house or inside the kids school bags, or there was the time one child that didn’t like broccoli and unbeknownst to mum and dad (while going to the toilet during her meal) hid it behind the S-bend floor area of the toilet and it had grown into someone’s science experiment. Prior to this find, I almost made a call to the local pest control service to inspect a potential infestation of dead rats within the ceiling cavity. This is an experience that only a parent can fathom.
So getting back to the title of this post, where stay at home mums lack culture and lifetime experiences, may I point out some of the things I have learnt to do or have experienced in my role as a mother for the last 18 yrs:
- experiencing the finer (and not so nice qualities) of nursing, nothing can prepare you for those gastro viruses that can plaque the household, the long nights of nursing a sickly child or having to do washing in the early hours of the morning.
- then there is the role of a Doctor, having to diagnose many an ailment, bandage, dress or strap a wound or remove bee stings, splinters, bindi-eye, glass, or any other foreign matter from either inside or out of the child’s body and if you have ever had a child with the flu or common cold, the amount of nose wiping can be very overwhelming.
- then you have pest control problems, when you need to inspect the premises for tics or those blasted nits from one or more child’s hair or then there is the fatal of job of having to determine whether a particular child has worms, NO ONE can prepare a parent for when they need to inspect their child’s rear end with a torch.
- toilet training, that is entirely an experience in itself as each child is different, this certain task requires A LOT OF PATIENCE and sanity (if you never had the experience of a child that has decided to go in their pants while in public, you truly don’t know what you are missing) – more details and a thorough explanation can be read here.… or how about having to remove a child and the remaining contents of pellets or a floating cigar in the bathtub.
- the countless hours of driving and taxi runs that occur as a parent is also phenomenal (imagine the profits we could make for each journey), or then there is the driving instructor in us all as our teen children become older (while driving us crazy), or that unexpected experience of being a comedian while giving driving lessons all in the name of avoiding a freak out accident at 100 kph – anyone else not a fan of spiders?
- having to become a janitor after little boys have plastered the floor and wall tiles, the toilet seat and its surrounds, can make any domestic bathroom turn into the stench of a male public toilet.
- what about having to sniff or peak into a babies nappy, to determine whether or not they need a change. Or when they have a mega explosion and it ends up all over yourself, or up the babies back…..or when a toddler decides to remove their nappy themselves and either plays with their poop and/or plasters it all over the walls, bedroom and surrounds of their cot (and in some circumstances, they just might eat it too).
So to sum up the above, I challenge anyone that has not had children to determine whether a stay at home mum, mother or mom really doesn’t have any culture or life changing experiences. Or perhaps you can add to the points above (there might be something I may have missed).
What other experiences would you NEVER have thought possible or EVER expected you would do now that you have children?