I catch all the im­por­tant mo­ments

The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Best Weekend - - FRONT PAGE -

Mark Ni­chols, 44, of Fresh­wa­ter, has been the pri­mary carer for his seven-year-old son Hud­son al­most since birth. The ac­tor, writer and some­time Uber driver switched tra­di­tional roles with wife Kate who works as a tele­vi­sion food pro­ducer, a role that sees her travel of­ten. He says: “Kate went back to work when Hud­son was about three or four months. As her job was al­ways more con­sis­tent than mine as a writer and ac­tor, it was a no-brainer that she would go to work and I would stay home with Hud­son. Kate had worked on the first sea­son of MasterChef at that stage and she was in de­mand, it just made sense for our fam­ily.

I went along to our lo­cal mother’s group from fairly early on. I was a lit­tle hes­i­tant at first, but once I met all the mums and we got on so well, it was great. Most of us were new par­ents and I got the same out of it as the new moth­ers did. Of course, there was some girl talk, but it didn’t worry me and it didn’t seem to worry them ei­ther. They’d joke I was the hon­orary sis­ter of the group.

I can’t re­mem­ber ever meet­ing an­other man do­ing what I did, so I guess that meant it was pretty rare.

There was one in­ci­dent that stuck in my mind, where there was an is­sue among some kids at the park, and a mother just charged through to take con­trol, even though I was there, like I couldn’t be trusted to han­dle it. But I guess she also wasn’t used to see­ing a full-time dad at the park.

Other than that I have never re­ally had to de­fend my po­si­tion.

These days, with Hud­son at school, I drop him off and drive for Uber dur­ing the day un­til I have to pick him up. And I spend Thurs­day and Fri­day on my writ­ing or go­ing to au­di­tions.

I take Hud­son to his swim­ming lessons, or we go surf­ing. He has also taken an in­ter­est in mak­ing short movies, which we do to­gether.

It’s a cliche to say they grow up so fast, but it’s true and I’m glad I’m in a sit­u­a­tion where I can catch all those im­por­tant mo­ments.”

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