I try to keep my work self and mum self separate. My work self writes content plans, runs social media campaigns and talks a lot about customer journeys. My mum self plays trains, dances to songs from The Muppets and talks a lot about pee-pee. They are, for the most part, two separate people, both of whom are exhausted and drink far too much caffeine.
But there are times when my mum self and work self collide. It’s always kind of an awkward meeting, a bit of an, “Oh...umm, I didn’t expect to see you here,” sort of thing. Here are 10 times this happened:
- I opened my laptop bag and found several pieces of plastic fruit in it.
- I was at work when I got a call that the sewage system at my daughter’s nursery had backed up and there poo water everywhere. I went to get her, then took her back to my office while I waited for my husband, who wasn’t working that day, to come pick her up. I tried to entertain her with Hootsuite. She was fairly unimpressed.
- We were out of clean plastic tubs, so I brought my lunch to work in this (see photo above)
- While I was trying to take a conference call from home, my daughter grabbed my headset off my head and yelled, “No mummy!” It’s hard to put on your best career woman act when there’s a toddler screaming in your ear.
- I looked in my work handbag and realised it contained the following: several handfuls of raisins, a My Little Pony, an empty dummy box and a book called “Where’s My Teddy?”
- I ran into a work colleague on the train on the way home from the nursery run, and we attempted to have an awkward conversation while my daughter ‘read’ her book at the top of her lungs.
- I looked at myself in the mirror in my office bathroom and noticed a toddler snot stain on my smart work dress.
- I needed a snack during a mid-morning meeting, so I ate the only thing I could find in my bag: a packet of Organix cheese crackers. (Verdict: a bit bland, but not bad in a pinch.)
- I found myself humming that Vtech walker song at my desk. You know the song. EVERYONE has one of those annoying walkers.
- I cleaned up all the nasty stuff that gets stuck in between the keys on my keyboard with a wet wipe.
It’s impossible to keep them apart entirely, no matter how hard I try – especially because they’re both a little jealous of each other. My mum self is sometimes desperate to reach for her phone and check her emails, and my work self sometimes wishes she could turn off the computer and break out the Play-Doh. I have to remind them that they’re both awesome, and they both have their place.
And they both need to cut back on the coffee. Seriously. It’s getting a bit ridiculous now.