When I designed this slogan for my tees it was with the idea that when a mum wears it and walks by another mum, they’d give each other a wry little grin and a virtual high five and would know, silently, exactly what was being said. Because being a mum is all the things. And a lot of them are full-on. #mumlife is:

  • All the washing, every day, all the time. Loading it in, unloading it, hanging it up, bringing it in, putting it away. All the goddamn time.
  • All the meal/bottle prep and snacks and clearing it away.
  • The non-stop tidying
  • The diarising and organising and party planning and gift buying and card writing
  • The school plays and parents’ evenings and homework and bag packing
  • The logistics, the nursery pick-ups, the coordination
  • The working-mum guilt
  • The bum wiping and toilet training
  • The feeding, the broken sleep
  • The sibling fighting
  • The whining, the crying, the tantrums
  • Being climbed on or tugged at or needed all day long
  • Being talked at 24/7
  • The demands, the neediness, the attitude
  • The rocking, the nap refusals
  • Days filled with soft play or Bing or pramming round the park just to get out of the house
  • The fights over screen time
  • The loneliness, the self-doubt, the losing your identity

Mum life can be all those things. But we nod at each other because we know it’s also a lot of other things:

  • The way your heart skips a beat when you watch them sleep, even when they’ve been a nightmare all day
  • The worry, the fearsome protective feelings
  • The pride when you watch them learn something new
  • The feeling you get when their face lights up when they see you
  • How exhausting it is when only you can make things right when they’re sad, but how lovely it is all the same that you’re their rock
  • The smell of their head when they snuggle in
  • Laughing like an idiot with them over poo jokes
  • Finding joy in playing and being silly again
  • Feeling amazing when you’ve managed a whole day without too much shouting and everyone’s eaten well
  • Bedtime stories
  • Relishing a night away from them then spending most of the time talking about them/looking at photos of them or FaceTiming them

#mumlife is a tough gig and it doesn’t get any easier. But it’s the most important job we’ll ever have and when you see another mum wearing that T-shirt (and possibly accessorising it with a pair of eyebags and a slightly harrassed expression), you just know.