Danny Dyer asks what I do all day as a stay-at-home mum, it's so disrespectful, says Jo Mas | The Sun
I DIDN'T plan on having my first daughter Dani at 19, but I definitely knew I was going to be a mum one day – I was always babysitting and playing with the kids in the local area. It felt very natural.
Even though I was young, I wasn’t frightened when I found out I was pregnant.
Danny [now 45], and I had been together since we met at school at 14, and when I told him, he couldn’t believe it. He said he would stick by me, but he was so young – he didn’t know how to look after himself, let alone a child. We moved in together to make a go of it.
The night before I went into labour on August 8, 1996, I was so scared, I thought: “What the hell am I doing?” But as soon as Dani arrived, I loved her immediately.
She was such an easy baby – we would go for lovely walks and she slept a lot. I had long periods of time with her in Spain, where my dad is from. Beautiful summers on the beach, her first steps and her first words were special times.
Danny always says we didn’t have any money, but my family rallied round and supported us. I had the best pram and everything I needed.
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I had no distractions until she was five months old, and then I knew I needed to get a job. At that time, Danny, who was also 19, was trying to make it as an actor.
He’d done The Bill and a Coca-Cola ad, but fame was a long way off, so I got a part-time job in finance at Scotland Yard, which I loved.
By the time our second daughter Sunnie was born in April 2007, the money had started coming in after Danny had starred in films including The Football Factory and The Business.
When Sunnie was one, we moved from our two-bed terrace in the East End to a detached mansion in Essex – and that’s when it all changed and we didn’t have to worry about money.
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I tried to keep it simple with trips to parks and beaches, because I didn’t want my kids to grow up spoiled. That felt important to me.
Then in October 2013, our son Arty came along. At that time, Danny was just joining EastEnders, so I brought Arty up on my own really. It took a lot from Danny, in terms of missing time at home, and it was tough on me being alone so much.
When Dani went into Love Island in 2018 I wasn’t worried – I knew she would make us proud. What you see is what you get with little Dan, but there was a part of me that wanted to protect her. She can be sensitive, just like her dad, which is a good thing.
We don’t have a cleaner, I do everything for the kids myself. It’s like therapy. The difficult thing is the technology with the homework.
Sometimes, Danny will say: 'What have you done all day?' And that can be a bit disrespectful.
There are so many projects they have to do and I can’t get the Wi-Fi to work. I try to remember when I’m stressing about the internet that there are starving kids out there. You can lose perspective.
Sometimes, Danny will say: “What have you done all day?” And that can be a bit disrespectful. I reply: “It’s alright for you, you can get up and go to work, then you come home and expect to do nothing!” But being a mum, I feel like my job is never done.
Now Dani is a mum [to son Santi, 22 months] and she is brilliant. When he was born, I told her to just enjoy that time, but she was very hard on herself about doing a good job.
I wanted her to sit back and rest and have 10 solid days of bonding with the baby. I did the night feeds, and Danny did the nappy changes. He will never shy away from cuddles and kisses.
I love being a mum, but now my children are a bit older, I want to train as a life coach. Danny left EastEnders recently, so I think it’s time for me to find myself, although I do worry about who will hold the fort at home.
I will have to put in the hours, but I need to do something for myself. I love working with people and I’ve been guiding my family my whole life. Whatever happens, it feels like I’m stepping into a new chapter and that’s exciting.
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