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Where Has My Life Gone? Existential musings from a work at home mum whose social life is limited to playgrounds, swimming lessons and playdates

The time comes when you realise your child has a better social life than you do.

They have swimming on a Monday, soccer on a Wednesday, the school disco on Friday and music on the weekend, plus a birthday party.

You? You went and got drunk at the work Christmas do in late November, and you’ve got a wedding to go to in August.

Sometimes you go to play centres to have a coffee with friends, where you try to have a conversation as though you were having a leisurely lunch in your favourite café, not munching on swirly chips and drinking a lukewarm latte.

You have these chats at the park, too, and at the school gate.

When you do go out, you start yawning at 10pm and are horribly aware you’ll be up at the crack of dawn rather than, say, embracing the night.

Sometimes you have a really good Facebook banter session, and then you feel really good.

WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU?

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You used to be the life of the party.

You had lovely hair and nails, you went out on Friday and Saturday nights, then to a Sunday session, with perhaps a weekend brunch and movie session in there too, and STILL looked great for work on Monday.

You thought nothing of weeknight gym sessions at your leisure, followed by a snack and a chat, or a long boozy lunch with colleagues when things were quiet.

You had robust opinions on causes you cared about, you were involved in community things.

Now, yes, you hold those opinions, but there seems to be a rapidly diminishing amount of the time in the day when you can be You, not Mum or Colleague or Wife, just You.

So who are You now?

You’re a bit tired, possibly a bit less inclined to spend time and money on your appearance maybe. Kids have made you less likely to sweat the small stuff and you are possibly a bit more patient with mums and their loud kids in public than you were before.

But you know what? You are still You. One day when the kids are older, you’ll start to rediscover yourself again. You’ll still be feisty, sociable, you’ll have energy for the things you used to do – but you’ll be older, wiser and more comfortable in your skin too.

When you yearn for a night of drinking vodka cocktails at a beachside bar when you’re sipping moscato in your pyjamas while paying some bills, remember that the grass always seems greener on the other side – but when it comes down to it – would you really change what you have now? Really?

Well, would you? Do you sometimes yearn for your life before children?

I would not swap back to my old life

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