Welcome to my #WonderMamaTribe interview series aimed to celebrate motherhood and all the WONDERful and inspiring Mums out there, working so hard to make sure their little ones are well, loved and appreciated. Which is why every week, I’m bringing you one amazing Mum, her life story and her experiences of being a Mum.
This week, I’ve really enjoyed finding out more about the lovely Hayley from the Winging it with two boys blog. What I really admire about Hayley is that she is doing such a great job as a Mum despite multiple health issues AND on her own for most of the week as well! I hope you are inspired by Hayley’s story too.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself and your children/ family.
My name is Hayley, I’m 37 and I’m married to Alan who is 36. We have two boys, who are aged three and a half and two and a half. Alan and I have been together for almost nine years and in September we will celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary.
I’m a stay at home mum, and Alan is a long distance lorry driver, so he works away all week and lives in his lorry. At the start of this year I was diagnosed with ME/ CFS and osteoarthritis (I also have HMS which I was diagnosed with in 2011) – as Alan works away all week I have to be careful not to overdo it (not that easy with two little people around!). We relocated last August from Cambridgeshire to Wales – it was a really hard decision to make to leave family and friends, but we wanted the boys to start their schooling in Wales.
My blog Winging it with two boys is literally what I’m doing – I want to share the crazy journey that I’m on with my two little boys. It’s really a mix of stuff that goes on in our lives – whether it’s visiting somewhere, us having a go making something, sharing potty training stories, birth stories, moving house, you name it – it’s either already on the blog or I’m yet to write it.
2. What female role models did you have as a young girl and woman?
When I was growing up, I was nuts about horses and loved Mary King – in fact, any of the female riders. I think it was because I admired the guts and strength they had to just get on a horse and go, and I wanted to be just like them.
3. What females do you currently look up to, inspire you and seek advice from?
My mum – because when I was younger, my dad worked away from home, so my mum had to cope with me and my brother by herself – and back then it was a lot harder – so I count myself lucky to have today’s conveniences (dishwasher, tumble dryer etc).
I also admire Michelle Heaton and the way she’s talked so openly about having a double mastectomy and a hysterectomy. I had a hysterectomy in September 2015 and I struggled for a long time to talk about it – she’s talked openly on TV to raise awareness of cancer and the BRCA2 gene, and the what the impact of having these operations has had on her life and her family’s life.
4. How would you describe yourself as a Mum? What sort of a parent are you?
I think I’m a strict mum. We use the timeout method in our house for bad behaviour, and the boys have a routine through the day (meals at the same time, bedtime follows the same pattern: PJs, teeth, story, etc). It makes my life easier as I’m parenting solo through the week, and they know what’s coming next and are now starting to get more involved in our day.
5. What and who has influenced the kind of a Mum that you are now?
My parents have influenced my parenting style so much – I was brought up to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, and do chores around the house – and I’m bringing my boys up the same way.
6. What’s your favourite part of being a Mum?
It has to be going out and doing fun stuff with them – they are now at the age where they love asking questions about things and I really enjoy explaining things to them.
They really love castles and are now both getting really good at clambering with supervision up to the top to see the views – they are also great at using their imagination and sometimes pretend they are off looking for Stephen from Thomas the Tank Engine.
7. And what is the hardest part?
Alan not being around – it’s hard doing it on my own through the week, I’m responsible for ensuring they get to school on time, and I’m the one that disciplines them. When daddy comes home he gets to be fun daddy, and I’m sure my children see me as a raging dinosaur half the time!
On the days where I’ve done too much, it’s hard to accept that I have to rest, and I feel guilty because I do stick the kids in front of the TV so I can have some downtime.
8. Do you think it’s hard being a Mum in this day and age?
I think we have a few more conveniences now which make life a little easier – but being a parent is hard regardless of when in time you’re doing it – being responsible for a little person is stressful and exhausting.
9. What three pieces of advice would you give to first-time/ expectant Mums?
Listen to everyone’s advice, and then make your own decisions on what advice you decide to take – it’s your parenting journey, not theirs.
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Let’s all support and inspire each other, Wonder Mamas! xx
Here are the previous #WonderMamaTribe interviews:
- #WonderMamaTribe interview – My wonderful Mum
- #WonderMamaTribe interview – Alisa from UKYankee
- #WonderMamaTribe interview – Alex from Better Together Home
- #WonderMamaTribe interview – Lauretta from Home and Horizon
- #WonderMamaTribe interview – Lucy from Muffin Top Mummy