Dubai's Desperate Housewife

Trials and traumas of a full-time mum in Dubai

21st century mum

with 3 comments


And for my next trick I’ll make a gluten-free, vegetarian lasagna while answering emails with my big toe

Last night, I fell asleep at 6pm, lying flat on the living room floor. Not even on the carpet: on the hard floor. I was in such deep sleep I didn’t know where I was when, 15 minutes later, DD said ‘Mummy! I’m hungry!’

‘You do too much,’ my mum tells me when I mention how tired I am come sunset. Well, getting up before dawn doesn’t help, but I don’t think I do too much: I don’t even work full-time. I do what most other mums do these days – less than what many other mums do – and certainly never a bean of housework.

When my mum was a stay-at-home mum, her main concerns were feeding the family and cleaning the house. She relaxed by listening to Woman’s Hour on the radio while she did the ironing. She was busy and she was fit but I doubt she ever felt stressed (well, not unless the pressure-cooker exploded, which did once happen. I still remember licking dinner off the walls while Mum hit the Christmas sherry).

So what is it that we 21st century mums do that our mums never had to do?

  • Make an effort to do some sort of exercise every day (because we’re not doing so much manual housework).
  • Try to keep up with some sort of career action.
  • Update and maintain a presence on social media.
  • Write a blog.
  • Produce packed lunches that contain protein, fruit, vegetables and healthy carbs but are free from pork, nuts, chocolate and anything nice.
  • Understand how to cater for play dates involving children who are vegetarian, vegan, lactose-intolerant, gluten-intolerant, pork-free, allergic to nuts, allergic to eggs and not allowed vodka.
  • Keep up with the news – not just in the one newspaper but via several different news sources.
  • Read and reply to emails. Can you imagine your parents getting 60+ letters through the letterbox every morning?

Does anyone else yearn for zero emails and long afternoons spent ironing with Woman’s Hour on the radio? Or is it just me?

Written by mrsdubai

October 15, 2014 at 4:23 pm

3 Responses

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  1. It’s not just you. It is just getting too much these days and I think simplifying life is a good thing to do. Our mums lived so differently, yet they didn’t miss out on anything and still looked fit and even though we didn’t get nutritionally balanced meals all day, we turned out well. So why don’t we just take all that in consideration and change a few things?
    I can only talk for myself – I stopped checking the news online every five minutes, stopped looking up FB, IG, Twitter etc. all the time, ignore any announcements on my phone, stopped worrying myself senseless about healthy food and worked out a cleaning and beauty routine.
    So I do watch and read the news once a day, only check social media in the evening when all is done, shortly, sort out my email folder in a breeze, call ppl back instead of messaging back and forth – you get the drift. And it works. I am much more relaxed than I used to be. I mean, I am 46. I was born in a time with no internet, mobiles, social media. I had a good life back then and while I do not want to miss out on any of the new shizzle, I don’t want it to rule my life (anymore).
    And concerning blogging – well, every two, three or four days – unless one earns their living from it (and hence has fulltime job time to do it fulltime). Whatever feels good 🙂

    Ok, enough blabbering 🙂



    October 16, 2014 at 1:25 am

  2. Yup – life was a whole lot less stressful before the advent of computers – even if the pressure cooker did blow up once in a while. That was fun! Specially after one had had a snifter of sherry! Mum.


    October 18, 2014 at 2:17 am

  3. I think our mothers didn’t have the pressure of Medias and social medias to be perfect domestic goddesses. their social circle was the one or two clubs they were part of, the ladies they met at 10am for coffee after the groceries were bought, and food was to be filling, they didn’t have to worry much about calories, nutrition and whatnot, first because there wasn’t an all time war on food from the media, and then because whatever they and ourselves ate was going to be burned as we played outdoor, walked to the stores and cleaned the home. The food didn’t even have to be organic, fair trade sourced because even it wasn’t there would be a thousand Facebook strangers flaming them for it. And bless it be they didn’t have Pinterest to make them feel guilty about making brownie from a box and cooking them a bit too long!

    cynthia haller

    January 6, 2015 at 7:36 am

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