Mum truths #3 with Ellamental Mama

mum truths

Welcome to this edition of mum truths where we shoot the breeze about being a mum with utter honesty. In this week’s installment I’m delighted to welcome Ella from Ellamental Mama who will be sharing her no-holds-barred mum truths….take it away Ella!


Hi! I’m Ella, and I write under the name Ella on my blog Ellamental Mama. I’m a thirty-something year old (who’s counting? Not me!) single mum to a lively toddler. My blog is an alternative and eclectic collection of musings on life as a solo mum. I work part-time in the charity sector, love travel and writing and provide an honest and raw, as well as sometimes amusing, account of life as a single working mum. My blog covers relationship breakdowns, feminist parenting and all things single parenting related. There’s also a few posts in there about all the crazy travels of my son and I.

mum truths

Sum up being a mum in five words….

Amazing, exhausting, beautiful, enlightening and forgiving.

What did you wish you knew before having children?

That I could have done it on my own from the start and that would have been a lot easier than staying in a bad relationship which actually made things a lot harder. It’s taken me a long time but I’m slowly realising that actually single parenting has lots of benefits.

What has been the hardest thing in motherhood for you?

The sleep deprivation, especially doing it alone and not having someone to give me a break. As my son’s got older that’s eased up a lot, but there were some really difficult times.

When things get tough in motherhood you……

I remind myself that nothing really matters apart from trying to ensure me and little one are safe and as happy as possible. That has meant forgetting about the state of the house and curling up in bed with him on a lot of occasions.

What do you feel guilty about as mum?

There’s a lot of talk about mum-guilt but it isn’t actually something I’ve felt too often. There have been specific things I’ve felt guilty about at times, like travelling for work without my son (especially when he was still breastfeeding). I’ve also felt guilty at times for the lack of a relationship he has with his father, but as time goes on and I get stronger I’ve realised that’s really not my fault.

When was the last time you lost your s*** at your child/children?

Last night, we got home late from the theatre, it was 11pm (he may be three years old but he doesn’t really have a bedtime), I was trying to get him to sleep and he wanted me to read his bedtime story verryyyy veerrryyyy ssllloooowwwlllyyyy. It was infuriating, I was knackered and knew I had a busy day at work the next day so I ended up snapping at him. I knew it was ridiculous but sometimes when you are shattered it’s hard to stop yourself. In the end I read him the book anyway.

What makes you feel bad as a mum?

When I get angry with my son and I know deep down that it’s really just him being a toddler, and it’s me who is exhausted.

And what makes you feel good as a mum?

Lots of things. I love it when I get to spend time with my son and take him out to do fun things. When he’s had a really fun day with friends he tells me how much he loves me so I know he really enjoys it too. I love when we get time to just snuggle up on the sofa and read books. I love when sometimes in the morning if we have no where to go we lounge in the bed pretending it’s a ship and we are off exploring the world. When he does something kind to a friend or for me I feel really proud like I’m doing an OK job after all.

The universal sods law of being a mum is…..

You can’t sleep when they are asleep, you are shattered when they are awake.

What is the greatest lesson being a mum has taught you?

Motherhood has taught me so much, as a solo mum I think I’ve been pushed to the extreme more than I would have if I had a partner. I’ve learnt what’s important to me, how to be more patient, how I react when I get frustrated. It’s taught me all about my good bits and my bad bits. It’s a tough, but amazing journey.

Read more from Ellamental Mama on the blog here and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

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