Ashley James has shared an honest insight into feeling like she was ‘just a mum’ and how scared she was that motherhood was becoming her whole personality.
The former Made in Chelsea star took to Instagram to share a video of what her life has been like since having her son, Alfie.
She added text to the clip that reads, ‘Them: So You’re just a mum now?’, to which she replies ‘Ok!’ and shows incredible moments that have occurred in her life since welcoming her son into the world.
Snippets of her walking red carpets, being on the cover of magazines, hosting her own podcast and continuing her DJ-ing career are among some of the throwbacks in the video.
The 35-year-old captioned the post, “We're all more than *just* anything, right? And yet, when we become mums, it feels like we really have to prove that we are more than *just* a mum”.
“I'll be honest, it sent me into overthinking mode: do I talk too much about motherhood? Is it my identity? Maybe I talk about being a mum too much. Because I remember when I announced my pregnancy on here I said: ‘but don't worry, I won't be one of those annoying mums who only talk about their babies’”.
“And I really wanted to prove that. That being a mum wouldn't become my identity. I feared being written off in my career (it didn't help that it coincided with the whole DJ world closing down due to lockdowns!). I didn't want to be written off in my friendship groups. I didn't want to be written off by society as a whole”.
Ashley, who is currently expecting her second child, continued, “At one point I felt so low with a newborn because I felt I had nothing else to offer. I could barely think of anything else through the sleepless nights and the endless feeds”.
“But why do we need to prove ourselves? And to who? Because the truth is, I still have the same skills and ambitions that I did before. I still love music. I love working. I love to travel – and I will more again”.
“Going back to work also enriched me. And I got shamed for that too. But right now? I'm his mum. And I will be for the rest of my life. It is my identity. And the truth is no one looks at me the way he does”.
The former reality TV star closed off by adding, “So yes, I'm still Ashley the DJ, the broadcaster, the lover of travel and my friends. But I am a mum and always will be. But why are we shamed for a role that we should be celebrated for?”.
Many fans of Ashley’s resonated with what she said in the comments with one writing, “Agreed. We can be a mum, and still have our other passions, our careers, our desires”. A second fan added, “Gosh, there's nothing "just" about being a mum. It's an honour and a privilege but there's a reason it's the hardest job in the world”.