Working from home has some great benefits; I particularly enjoy the proximity of snacks at all times, the freedom to wear woolly socks, and (of course) the luxury of having a window to stare out of.
But there’s also a lot that I miss from my ‘pre-remote working’ life.
The main thing I miss is being both a mum and a worker. Two roles, both of which I thoroughly enjoy. But I enjoy them as two separate things. I really, really hate being the entity I think of as a mumworker. A sludgy cocktail of half-doing things.
I am simply not someone who is good at smushing my two roles together. I find it stressful trying to be both simultaneously and I quickly spiral into a place of self-doubt.
I write this as my 2-year-old daughter sits next to me watching Peppa. It’s a beautiful Autumn day and we should be in the park playing in piles of leaves. Even though I know that ‘playing in piles of leaves’ only happens in films and on Instagram, I still feel like I’m letting her down.
My 7-year-old is on a Zoom lesson (she has been sent home from school after a positive test in her bubble) and I can hear her shouting at the computer in a rage as she’s not managed the ‘unmute’ function quickly enough…we’ve all been there. I am letting her down too (shift+command+A!!).
I know just how difficult it is to juggle all your different responsibilities as a parent whilst also trying to be productive. Oftentimes, you can just about manage to keep things together but feel like you’re not able to give anything 100%
That’s why I urge all parents who are just about getting by with WFH to consider getting a nanny to help out.
Here’s how it works:
Figure out what you need
Is it someone to help first thing in the morning? To enable you to start the day feeling in control, helping you and your kids get ready for the day ahead?
Or is it someone to do pick-ups? At the start of the day doing pick-ups feels manageable but suddenly it’s 2pm, you’ve just managed to grab lunch and you have to leave.
For me homework time is a real crunch too – my kids aren’t the sort that you can just leave to get on with it, and I have a stab of guilt every time I see my son’s yellow ‘reading diary’.
Getting some support from a nanny, even for a couple of hours a day, can be just what you need to keep things running smoothly (and keep you feeling sane!).
On Bubble, you can figure out exactly the hours you need and find someone to fit into your family’s schedule. Rather than booking someone in hourly blocks and having to make arrangements around them, you can book the perfect amount of help for you, whenever you might need it.
Plus, if a last-minute emergency pops up (or you only realise what you need 2 hours before the big Zoom presentation), you can book a local sitter in minutes.
Plan your space
We’ve all had to rethink our homes this year, and adding another person into the mix (even if they’re a nanny) might just feel like too much of a squeeze.
The secret here is to make sure you have your WFH ‘zone’ which feels separate enough from the main activity of the family. It may not be a perfectly designed space – it may just be the spare room/dumping ground – but it’s yours.
I will admit that I do sometimes have to forsake the odd cup of tea in order to keep out of the kitchen, where my nanny is hanging out with my kids. But it’s so worth it for all the pictures she sends me of them playing hide-and-seek in the park while I get on with everything I need to do.
Stop feeling guilty
Childcare is too often viewed as a luxury or a guilty secret, and that’s simply not the case. Childcare is an investment in our careers and our happiness as parents. It’s an expensive investment, but one which is shown to give plenty of return.
This year, more than ever, we as parents deserve to ease up on the self-recrimination and make sure we can be our best, so we can be the best for our kids.
Book a nanny on Bubble while you work from home
Using Bubble requires no long term commitment and you can interview and trial as many sitters and nannies as you like. Simply download the app on iOS or Android, hit ‘meet the locals’ and see all the incredible people ready and waiting to help make your life a little bit easier.