It seems that sticking Mum or Mummy in front of anything has a jarring effect for some people, they feel it is patronising or twee or simply not a box they want to put themselves in. However, defying this stereotype of the twee hobbyist is the self proclaimed Mum Blogger Marlene Schiappa of ‘Maman Travaill‘ (Mother Works…I knew GCSE French would serve me well one day) who is the ‘most contentious’ appointment to President Macron’s new government with a brief focused around gender equality.
This Guardian profile of Schiappa of course highlights the professional experience, commitment to public good and generally what an all round exciting prospect the new minister is to French politics. However for me, it also highlights the fact that this movement Feminism, Mumpreneurs, Mum Bloggers, we shouldn’t back away, apologise or minimalise the work we do.
When I speak to Mum’s about wanting to get back to work, one thing increasingly crops up and that is a lack of confidence. It’s not surprising really, is it? I mean, many of us had careers spanning perhaps 10 to 15 years, often taking quite a lot of our identity form our work. So when that all stops, and you have those months where the focus shifts entirely on to your new little person, where does that person go? So often we find ourselves saying ‘obviously I love my kids’ but sometimes focusing a whole new identity around motherhood just doesn’t feel right.*
At Mum and Then Some we hope to help Mums get their groove back on. To help them find a creative passion, return to work with confidence, reset towards freelancing or start their own business, but quite often that’s not a linear journey. There will be times when the ebb and flow leads you one way and then you find it needs to change, and that’s ok. Sometimes you’ll need more money so wont be able to indulge your start up, maybe you just can’t find suitable childcare or it perhaps you need to find what motivates you again before you full on commit to a new venture.
When Marlene Schiappa, started her blog she was just another Mummy blogger but in a country where that whole flexible working conversation wasn’t really happening. Now she’s a cabinet minister. I wonder if she’d been told that 10 years ago when she had her first child she would have believed it?
So, don’t be afraid to try things, and certainly don’t apologise for it, embrace everything that becoming a mother has made you because you never quite know where it will lead!
*For some it is and that’s groovy too 🙂