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While being pregnant, it seemed as if everyone and their mother was giving advise on how to take care of yourself and your unborn child. But nobody ever really warned us of the days where we would be pulling our hair out and arguing with our daughters. Parenthood is no easy feat, let me tell ya. I’m only a mom to two girls and for a long time I did it by myself. I didn’t get “sick days” and still don’t. However, my support system is 10x bigger than it was 4 years ago. My daughters are 5 & 7 and have a larger than life personality. Some days I’m a queen running a tight ship. Other days I plant my kids outside or with an activity. Okay, okay. TV time, too. All about balance baby ;). Let’s face it though. Kids can be assholes and run our sanity dry. But they mean well and sometimes those draining meltdowns are their known form of communicating with us “grown ups”.
Let’s face it, we all want to be a better mother, so if you’re looking for a little mom-to-mom advice than keep reading for a list of ways to be that mom you’ve always wanted to be.
To be a better mom, you MUST:
STOP THE MOM SHAME
It’s inevitable not to silently compare your life to some other mom you see on the playground. Every mom is different and every parenting way is different. If you’re constantly worrying about how OTHERS portray you as a mom, stop right now because you’re doing it all wrong. You see, there’s no handbook on how to be the “perfect mom”. But don’t you dare take what others say personally. I learned along time ago that that’s a great way to throw yourself into a little depression funk. My advice? Be in the moment with your child. Be present and offer affection. Kids thrive off that. Like I always tell my mom girlfriends, if you provide and keep a roof over your family, you’re already ahead of most.
It’s okay to feel like the ground is crumbling beneath you and you’re ready to pack your bags and disappear for the weekend. Uninterrupted. However that’s not possible for most of us. So, take a step back, collect your thoughts and breathe. Count to 10 if need be. Yelling back at your kids won’t show the results you want, and if they do, it won’t be for very long. You see, when a child screams at us it’s their way of communicating that something isn’t right with them and it’s our job to instill the appropriate way of communication. If they us as parents screaming to get our voices heard, it only makes since that they will do the same. They follow every bit of what we say or do. I do suggest the salt lamp from amazon. You can get them for a decent price these days. I love mine because it brings a calming effect to my bedroom and helps me fall asleep.
ASK FOR HELP
Asking for help may not be an option as your support circle may be small or it’s solely you, ask. For. Help. What if you don’t have a support system? If no one is willing to help you, seek out help. Find child care for a few hours a week. There’s many programs that will also ASSIST IN THE COST OF DAYCARE! ( look into it as every state is different)
SPEND ONE-ON-ONE TIME WITH YOUR KIDS
One of my all time favorite things to do with my daughters is to be outside with them. This past winter was hard on my inner depression so if I found myself feeling too cooped up or like I wanted to sleep all day everyday, I forced myself to sit my happy ass outside for at least 20 minutes. Something about the fresh air to reset your chaotic mindset. Now that the weather is getting nicer here in Maine, it’s easier to be outside. Try to get outside with your little ones. Break them away from their tablets and YouTube shows and introduce them to Red Rover, kick ball, Marco Polo, etc. Teach them what our childhood was like, but better.
PRACTICE SELF-CAREIn today’s society, it seems as if the words “self-care” is a no no. It’s engraved in our mom brains that we need to put our children’s needs before our own and if we don’t, we’re easily labeled as a bad mom or a lazy mom. The truth is, our bodies physically and mentally need to chill out once and a while. There’s only so much stress and exhaustion one can handle. Before long, we start to feel anxious and irritable, depressed and moody. Life literally feels like an uphill battle with no light at the end of the tunnel. It sucks.
LEARN HOW TO SAY ‘NO’Listen, I’m pretty sure all moms live in a state of worry. Our negative feelings stem from a constant feeling of being overwhelmed (you know that burning feeling in your gut and your heart is racing from anxiety? That’s overwhelmed) causing us to yell at our kids. Instead, do yourself a favor and learn how to say no. To anyone. Your kids. Your husband/wife. It’s okay to say no without feeling guilty. Your inner happiness and soul will feel lighter when you start saying no things you don’t want to do. Set boundaries with your time.
I have a challenge for you. Instead of walking around looking at the ground, smile at each person you walk by. You’ll be surprised at how differently people react to you when you’re not in constant resting bitch face mode.
When you’re feeling down, remember this quote
“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense.”