So what is a Yummy Mummy – or for that matter a Slummy Mummy anyway? Maybe that’s a strange question for someone who goes by the name of Slummy Mummy. Maybe the answer is really obvious.
Maybe a Slummy Mummy is fat, lazy slob who looks like she’s dragged herself (and her house) through a hedge backwards, and then forwards & sideways a bit for good measure. She takes no care of herself or her home (we’ll leave children out of this description).
Perhaps a Yummy Mummy is a svelte, sexy, über mum who is always well groomed, her home is always immaculate (and smells of white chocolate macadamia nut cookies from impromptu baking sessions with her children and their friends), and who manages this whole “mummy” thing with grace; with elegance. I think in my head a Yummy Mummy glows a little bit like a halo, with super swishy, glossy hair, a chiffon scarf (where did that come from!?) and immaculate, well behaved children. I don’t even think I like her – or at least that image of her – very much, though that may in part be jealousy.
To be frank, I don’t think I like either of those descriptions very much. Well, except the biscuits. I’m never going to turn down homemade biscuits. So it may seem strange to refer to myself as Slummy Mummy and to write a blog with the intent of becoming – or at the very least getting close to being – a Yummy Mummy when I don’t even like them. However, these are just stereotyped, superficial descriptions of these women. The reality is much richer and more interwoven.
The Slummy Mummy is – and I mean no offence here – most mothers I know. Yes, that probably includes you.
She is the woman who doesn’t always worry about ironing clothes if they’re not being worn in public, and let’s face it, your body heat will help most of the wrinkles fall out eventually. She may have a room whose door stays shut to hide the flotsam and jetsam of everyday life spent running around after two small people (3 if you count the daddy) when People Who Will Judge are coming to visit (eg the Mother in Law). The hoover, though used, is in no danger of being worn out any time soon, and she is not on speaking terms with Mr Sheen because he has yet to visit and shine umpteen of her things clean.
She has no time to keep up to date with the latest fashions so lives in the same old faithful clothes she’s been wearing since they were in fashion about a decade ago. She has no time for this because once she’s got round to washing the jam from her hair after a loving cuddle from her toddler, and cleaned the toothpaste off the arm of the couch after her son decided it was time he learned to keep his teeth clean all by himself because he’s “a big four now,” she only just has about enough time to sit back and watch Desperate Housewives.
Her children are happy, even if they do occasionally turn up for nursery with trousers that have a hole in the knee after a half asleep dressing session. She may be jealous of the other mums who can turn up at nursery/school without a hair out of place and crisp, clean clothes on – though she probably doesn’t see them often as she is usually running late. She (and her children) knows the theme tunes to all the CBeebies shows – not because it’s an electronic nanny but because it’s a lifesaver, creating time to sit and have lunch in peace, and maybe even get that toilet cleaned. And who really cares if, after all the running about, she doesn’t have time to keep her eyebrows and leg hair in check!?
But do you know something? I reckon most Yummy Mummies are exactly the same.
Few of us are all of the things above (though I’m having a good stab at it). We play to our strengths. Some people are good at doing their hair and wearing lovely clothes – that doesn’t mean that they are slaving over a hot stove lovingly creating healthy, balanced, home cooked meals for their children. Some people are brilliant at entertaining children without turning on the telly. That doesn’t mean that they don’t have an overflowing laundry basket. Some people are rubbish at personal grooming, but it doesn’t mean that they don’t provide a loving home for their family.
Yes, we are all Slummy Mummies because when you get right to the heart of it, we’re all Yummy Mummies, too.
That doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing to want to get stronger in new areas, though. It’s ok to want to be able to keep your bikini line in check as well as the tide of biscuit crumbs around the couch. It’s all right to aspire to achieve something more, so long as this comes from you and not just those around you. So long as you never forget that whether you count yourself as Slummy or Yummy, you remember that you are, first and foremost, a fabulous woman – with or without chiffon scarves.