Parenting is hard. So many decisions to be made, questions to answer, meals to be planned... Where do you go for help? What helps you keep sane and balanced? I have a few places I find encouragement, and this is a collection of reminders that I wrote down in my journal and on my phone when I was struggling with being tired and frustrated. I've appreciated having them there to read over when I need a refresher - it's like a little time out to get back on track - so I thought I'd share them.
To be a good mom, keep:
* Getting enough sleep. Nap first, then chores.
* Trying again. Each moment / decision/situation is another opportunity.
* Praying. Nothing else will keep you grounded in reality (usually that it's not really that bad) and nothing else gives that hope and peace.
* Anticipating. Plan ahead so you're not faced with decisions and have to say no (ie. after school snacks - have it ready!)
* Biting your tongue against the nagging.
* Firm, and expect things done well.
* Double checking until it's done right - not because you expect perfection, but because you are training life skills.
* Telling yourself to enjoy today.
* Kissing their daddy - let them see you enjoying each other.
* Reminding yourself that it's a good thing that they don't always get what they want. They need that training for later when they want something they know is not right - they have to know that they can handle the disappointment and that they will get over it.
* Playing. My stuff will wait - get on the floor and make eye contact. That is love. Yes, there is times when it works to work while they play beside me, but prioritize.
Remember that this stage is not forever. "This too shall pass!" DECIDE to enjoy each moment you can and see each trying bit as a bit - not as defining the whole day. Yes, he cries - he can't talk. Yes, he's heavy - you GET to hold him! Yes he naps - Hooray!
To keep yourself grounded, remember:
* Know yourself. Recognize when it's PMS and cut yourself some slack.
* There has to be some compromise.- when you choose to put the other person first, follow through cheerfully. Don't play the martyr. Periodically re-evaluate and if the choice is still the same, strengthen your resolve to see it through.
* Stay positive. Fight the negative thoughts - they have no place in your head.
It's kind of a random collection, but it's full of things that I need reminding of.
I just got some books on motherhood by Sally Clarkson - has anyone read any of her stuff? I read a bit of one from the library and thought it seemed like it would be a great purchase. I'm hoping for encouragement and inspiration to overflow...
Where do you get your encouragement? How do you get yourself back on track when you feel 'off'?