My beautiful li'l princesses

RIGHT now I’m filled with a little excitement and a whole lot of fear. This week I made one of the hardest decisions of my life. I can barely utter the words. In fact, when I did “the deed’’, I couldn’t even bring myself to say them. “I am …’’

As the Editor put it: “breaking up is hard to do’’. You bet ya. This week I broke it off with journalism. We’ve been together now for 16 years. Our first day together was an absolute shambles as I fumbled my way through my first story – after which my boss rewrote the whole thing. Oh dear, was I really cut out for this? I still have that story and can’t help but laugh at what absolute drivel it was. Kind of shows you how far you’ve come, I guess.

Throughout my career, I’ve been blessed. The majority was spent as an entertainment journalist, interviewing big name TV, film and music stars. People often ask `who was your favourite?’ It’s usually followed by slight blushing, head bowed and a whispered: “John Farnham’’. I know, I know, you can stop laughing now. Give me the biggest names in pop and rock and, I’m sorry, but this one fulfilled the long-held dream of a little country girl.

Sure, there have been plenty of junkets (wining, dining and realising Jason Donovan is also only 150cms). Then there was the behind the scenes stuff. The Australian singer who took me shopping in Sydney and the entertainer who allowed me so far onto the stage (without being seen by the audience) that the screams from his hundreds of female fans left me with goosebumps.

Then something happened. I got knocked up, popped out a li’l princess and suddenly my career-obsessed life changed. Forget chasing the stories. All I wanted was to witness that first roll, first crawl, first step and first “I love you’’.  I can have a career anytime, but this time with my two girls I can never get back.

Priorities change. Life changes. Sometimes we need to move on and I’m so fortunate to be in a position to do that. Is being a housewife “superstar’’ all cupcakes and roses? No, I think not. But I’m ready to be a stay at home mum and all that that entails.

This week I resigned. There, I’ve said it. Now the next chapter of my life begins.

Are you a working mum or a SAHM (stay at home mum)? What led you to your decision?

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40 Responses to FEATURE: Breaking up is hard to do

  1. Oh, good luck! Enjoy this time with your littlies 🙂

  2. Caz says:

    Really! Wow – that sounds like a very huge decision. Will you do some freelance work now or just work here? (as well as being a SAHM of cause!!). Congratulations on your decision and hope you love your days being the big princess of the castle. I think you already have a hit on your hands with 3lilprincesses (IRL and online).

    Very quiet in bloggyland atm. Think all those lucky conference peeps have taken all the bloggy mojo of to sydney with them. Feeling so jealous this morning 🙂 Caz

    • Kel says:

      I know what you mean about quiet, Caz. The blogosphere feels like a ghost town!! hehe!! Oh well, that will be us at conference next year. 🙂
      Yes, can’t believe I’ve resigned, but it’s something I’ve been thinking about for quite a long time. I figured now was as good a time as any. I have a few projects I’m working on, but nothing set in stone yet. Hopefully I can start announcing them in the coming weeks and months.
      And, yes, I’ll certainly have my hands full with my two princesses and this blog. I wouldn’t mind maybe doing a little bit of freelance work, but we’ll see how we go.
      And thanks for the support Caz – in your words above and in regularly visiting this little “virtual home”. It means a lot! 🙂

  3. Jeanette says:

    I’m blessed to work outside of the home for 2 days a wk (keeps me sane) & home with my girlies the rest of the time!

    • Kel says:

      That’s a great balance Jeanette. It’s how I’ve been operating the past three years – two to three days at work and the remainder at home with Ella.
      I used to look forward to work days for the adult conversation, but also couldn’t wait to get home to play games. LOL!
      I know I won’t be sitting still for long, so I’m looking forward to the new opportunities that will open up! 🙂

  4. Ash says:

    Wow! how exciting! I resigned from the world of interior design, so I could start my little business. Can’t wait to hear about your new paths. Your princesses are exquisite!

    • Kel says:

      Thanks Ash! Hearing so many stories of women who are “doing it for themselves” and it’s so inspiring!
      I love what you do. Just gorgeous! 🙂

  5. rachel says:

    hi kel! what a tough decision for you to make….i think you summed it up perfectly though when you said that you can never get this time back with your girls and that is the most precious thing of all! plus we have to enjoy being with them now when they want to spend time and play with us! before we know it they will be teens and starting to branch out doing their own things. at tleast we will have these moments to reminisce about 🙂
    i went back to work (partime) after the little emperor was born and it was all good. i looked forward to the adult conversation and the vague glimpse of my old life, but it never really felt the same….I’m a teacher and going back parttime they always treated me like the relief teacher, i never felt attached to the class and i felt they didn’t respect me (this was adult education). about half way through my second pregnancy i quit my job and the then the school went bankrupt about a month later! good timing!
    now i do examining for an english proficiency exam twice a month. i can’t say i overly enjoy it but i do like the feeling of contributing financially in some small way. usually i find it quite stressful leaving the kids with their dad (even though he loves it!) mostly because of the smiling tiger being so young and going through a mummy phase…. i just want to get in and out as quickly as possible!
    goodness such a long comment!!!

    • Kel says:

      I know a few teachers who could totally relate to you, Rachel. As you say, it is a really tough decision. It’s one I’ve sat on for so long. You never really know if you’re doing the right thing, but I guess you never know until you try.
      I hope I’m as fortunate as you are in being able to still contribute financially to the family unit. I’d still love to do `something’! Mind you, this blogging gig is keeping me busy. LOL!
      Thanks so much for sharing, Rachel. It’s really nice hearing mum’s experiences with this. 🙂

  6. Tess says:

    Hi Kellie,

    Always a big decision. I’m sure you love spending time with your girls as much as I do. Eldest now at high school (gr 8) so she likes her independance. I work full time but with a shift work husband the girls and him get time together and we have a great family support.
    Had to laugh that you fav was John – he was just the best when we were in primary school. Have fun with the girls while they are little, they grow fast
    Tess 🙂

    • Kel says:

      Hey Tess,
      So nice to hear from you. Wow! High school already? Where did that time go?
      Yes, didn’t we all love Whispering Jack! hehe!! I was always envious of Melissa getting to meet him and used to dream that one day I might meet him too!! If you want something bad enough…. 🙂
      Glad to hear your family is doing well. How nice is daddy-daughter time?!
      Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing, Tess. It’s really appreciated. We must catch up sometime. 🙂

  7. Carly Webber says:

    Oh Kellie how exciting! Plenty of mixed emotions no doubt but it will be so rewarding. As you say ‘Priorities change. Life changes’.
    ENJOY! x

  8. Tat says:

    I extended my maternity leave a few times before I took the leap. I don’t regret it. I hope you enjoy it, too.

  9. I worked as a freelance blog designer for six years before Erin was born. I quit all the co-ops I was working with a few months after I found out because I just couldn’t work–I could barely move for being tired–with the intention of going back to it later. Unfortunately Erin had a lot of medical problems that extended loooong past when she came home so that never really happened, well not until much later than planned and when it did I was pregnant with Abi so there went my motivation and energy 😆 I’ve recently done a few jobs and Bad Mummy is kind of worky so I guess I’m a WAHM…sort of?

    I enjoy writing and working for myself so I guess it’s kind of natural to be growing a “business” in this sort of field. I really enjoy being at home with my kids, but by the same token it can also be really hard to find time to work, especially when I need to work uninterrupted, which is almost impossible during the day time and I’m usually knackered at night, but I keep plugging away because I enjoy having a full plate (I must do or I’d give something up, right?).

    • Kel says:

      No wonder your blog looks so fabulous, Bec. I didn’t realise that was your background. Wow! I know where to go when I need advice now!!!! 🙂
      It’s funny where life leads us. I’m looking forward to seeing where your blog takes you. I so enjoy reading it and am in awe of some of your features (the forums for starters!).
      I’m hearing you on the `finding time to work’ bit. I think that will be my biggest challenge in all this. But, as you say, there’s nothing like keeping busy!! 🙂

  10. Trish says:

    Enjoy motherhood as a SAHM = the early years go way too quickly but I still look forward to their one preschool day 🙂

    • Kel says:

      Thanks, Trish. Yes, still can’t believe Ella’s already three and Holly’s not far off six months. It still only feels like yesterday I was in the hospital with them (although, quite happy that part of the job’s over!!).

  11. Being a Stay AT Home Mum is important but is one of the hardest things ive ever done, going from having all my time to myself to do whatever i wanted punctuated with a social life and 40 hours of work a week to giving over majority of the waking hours to two demanding toddlers.
    I wouldn’t give it up, and i feel privileged to be able to afford to do it, where most mums need to return to work quickly for financial reasons..
    We 3 have fun swimming, preschool days, playgroup, shopping and playing with our chickens, baking, and cleaning (more i do the cleaning) 🙂

    • Kel says:

      LOL!! Yes, the cleaning is definitely the downside. If only the cleaning fairy would visit once a week!
      I relate to everything you’ve written, Courtney. I also feel very blessed to be in a position to be able to stay at home with my girls. 🙂

  12. Kym says:

    YAY Kellie! You rock girl and you will go far, I love what you write!

  13. I have a foot in both camps. Work two days and home for three days. It suits me and I have been doing it for years now. Things seem to get out of balance if I work more.

    Hi from The Fibro

    • Kel says:

      Yes, I love that balance. Since I wrote the post, I’ve started my Mum PR biz from home, working two days a week. I love how it’s helping keep my brain active and allowing me to have adult conversations. It also means I feel far more “present” when I’m actually “being a mum”. We’re both definitely very fortunate!

  14. Jen Bennett says:

    What an amazing story! I’m sure that took courage. When I had my little boy I decided to be a stay-at-home mom just becasue I couldn’t imagine missing all the big stuff (fist steps, words etc.) I was never very career oriented, but now that he’s older I really needed something for me to fill the time. So I started writing. It’s crazy what I have learned, and I still have a long way to go. But it’s good to find the balance between being a mom and having my own thing. Love this post!

    • Kel says:

      Thanks Jen. As I just mentioned on a previous comment, since writing this post I’ve started my Mum PR business, which I do from home. That’s really helped me keep that balance, but means I don’t miss out on the girls’ wonderful milestones.
      All the very best with your writing too. The more you write, the easier it gets. xx

  15. here on the rewind 🙂

    I’m a WM and money (being a single mum for a long time) was my main motivation to work and then retaining financial independence but also a sense of self. But my ideal would have been part-time.

    • Kel says:

      Sometimes we just have to go with what the moment presents. My idea, when I wrote this post, was to start a PR biz for mums later in the year when Baby Holly was older. However, I’ve since had so many requests to do PR for different businesses and bloggers, that I’ve just had to roll with it.
      And I agree about the sense of self – very important. xx

  16. What a tough choice to make! I recently had my resignation kind of thrust upon me to make room for the husband’s new job and demands. We couldnt sustain both travelling two hrs to work and even though I only did it twice a week, I miss it but at the same time am excited to explore more opportunities. I hope its all working out very well for you too!

  17. Seana says:

    Ah, it’s all a tricky one, but I do think we WAHMs have a lot to be thankful for. I moved cities when pregnant then countries when my eldest son was three months then to Sydney when he was 15 months. Within a year I had a new house, new baby and he had a new diagnosis of autism spectrum… I’ve never held a job since I was pregnant, jeez 15 years!! Unemployable now, but loving working from home.

    • Kel says:

      Wow, Seana, I admire you. Moving without kids is tough, let alone when you have bubs. That’s a great achievement.
      I agree, we WAHMs certainly have a lot to be thankful for. We really do get the best of both worlds! 🙂

  18. Aakriti says:

    Hi Kel…i just cant imagine how it would be if someone tells me to stop writing one day..but u knw what as u just said life often ends up being quite different from what we “plan” or “think” it to be…and if its for the joy of seeinf ur beautiful daughters grow…then one day u’ll surely get back to it…in fact u are with it…with this blog:)
    from the Fibro
    Aakriti
    http://aakritimalik.blogspot.com/2011/06/flutter.html

    • Kel says:

      Thanks Aakriti. The blog, and now Mum PR, are both helping keep this little brain active and my writing skills up. I’d hate to lose that. I guess, if blogs didn’t exist, I still would have found a way to write! All the best with your writing too! 🙂

  19. What a great post. I see that things have changed a bit for you since you wrote it. Being a WAHM is not the easiest road in some ways, but it certainly is very flexible. Hope the PR gig is working out for you!

    Thanks for Rewinding at the Fibro.

    • Kel says:

      Yes, definitely not easier (trying to write without being interrupted for breastfeeds, nappy changes or attention is a bit of a struggle) but, on the other hand, I love that I’m not missing all those things too. And I’m certainly glad the phone doesn’t ring incessantly with little ol’ ladies wanting to tell me what they had for lunch before they get onto the real reason for their call! hehe!! 🙂

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