Somebody ones told me “Yeah, go ahead. Having a kid is easy. ” I wanna meet that somebody now! I have my ups and downs in motherhood. Sometimes I am rocking it. I am! But there are also these moments when I am losing it all. Although my experience as a mom is modest, there are certainly some things that help me find the bright side in difficult times. Things that make me a happier mom and wife. I share them with you here.
#1 TAKE MY SLEEP
I knooow…it sounds as surreal as a pink unicorn. BUT having a good night’s sleep is one of the most important things. Not just for moms. For the whole humanity! Okay, more so for us 🙂 🙂 🙂 That 8 hour nice sleep that some people call “beauty sleep” and I call an extension of my nerve reserves and the main triger of “zen” vibrations. If I have not got my sleep dose, I turn into a godzilla-like monster for the whole day.
Alas, this means that occasionally I struggle to grant the respectful level of patience and care to my beloved ones. And of course, this leads to stress that is damaging to everyone. Hence, I try my hardest to get that whimsical 8 hour sleep and lately it’s been working for me. Not mainly due to proper planning but rather due to the new school term that started recently. Subject to circumstances, I get up when it is still dark outside, run a busy life, and fall asleep at 8pm along with my daughter.
This is, of course, provided I had not fallen asleep before her while we were reading a book. This dreamy 8 hour sleep allows me to get up in the morning with ease, in high spirits and even greater freshness. Yes, pure freshness without even having to drink a bucket of coffee. My patience and reasoning during the day reach unprecedented heights. This makes my interaction with others a pleasure.
#2 HAVE ME TIME
These precious moments can last just 30 minutes a day, but I try to indulge in them. Weather and mood dependent, I run in the mountain or in the park, go out for coffee with friends, go shopping, indulge in beauty therapies, draw, read a book or just stare at one point while listening to music. These activities help me relieve stress, energize myself and keep my mind in that vital balance that allows me to think soberly and adequately. And besides, after receiving my dose of ME time, I miss my wee one so much that I can’t wait to cuddle and kiss her, do yoga together, play or talk.
#3 ZERO COMPARISON RULE
As much as I teach my daughter to be a worthy yound lady, so does she teach me to be a parent. There are days when I’m super proud of myself, but there are also days when I feel like I’ve failed. This feeling is usually magnified by the moment I start to compare myself to other moms from my immediate circle or from social media. I have got the feeling that all my weaknesses start growing and haunting me as a monster in the dark. So I made one rule – NO comparisons.
Each of us goes through difficulties, but that does not make us bad mothers. On the contrary, it reveals the diligence and strength of our character to deal with every failure and to seek a new approach to manage situations. The things that help me in such moments are sharing with my husband and friends, looking at photos from the archives, which bring me so much joy and, of course, indulgence with homemade chocolate secretly hidden in the fridge.
#4 LET IT GO
Children create chaos. Regardless of how much I tidy up at home, there is still something messy or dirty. Especially when we are making cookies or chocolate. The kitchen becomes a battlefield, and only the ceiling lacks coconut flour with cocoa butter and freshly blended dates. But the little one is so radiant that her smile turns this culinary apocalypse into a small holiday. Well, I will have to do the cleaning afterwards, but I’d rather clean the kitchen thousands of times rather than have no one to stain it.
Shifting the focus from “I’m pissed off!” to “It is not a big deal.” turned out to be a pivotal moment for me. And no, it wasn’t easy. It cost me a lot of bitten lips and swallowed words. BUT it was worth it.
#5 SMALL RITUALS
I notice that when I do some small things in the morning I find myself in a much better mood and tone. Simple things like taking a quick hot shower with essential oils, putting on my favorite perfume and some makeup, wearing those fancy clothes or my favorite shoes. This is not about jumping into heels and ball gowns – NO. I’m talking about a very small retouch and refreshment that have the power to set a new happy direction of my day.
People are influenced by different things. For example, I am influenced by scents. So for me, a day without perfume or essential oils just isn’t a real nice day. To someone else, this may be something completely different. One of my close girlfriends, for example, always puts on an eye liner and a dress in the morning and her whole being starts to shine. This also affects her communication and behavior with both her child and her husband and the people around her.
#6 WAKE UP EARLY
The only time I can manage to get things done is while everyone else is asleep. In our family, this is early in the morning. I always get up at least an hour before everyone else, put the house in order, prepare everyone’s breakfast, take a shower, drink coffee and get myself ready for the new start. This way during the day, I have time to complete my priorities.
#7 BE THANKFUL
In the evening I do a quick overview of the day in my thoughts and I take my time to be thankful for all the blessings and challenging moments. Yes, I am thankful also for the difficulties that life throws at me, because that is how I become better, stronger and more determined.
#8 CHOOSE MY PRIORITIES WISELY
I was getting cross when I was seeing that it is a mess all over minutes after I had tidied up. Cross that I was failing to complete my to-do list for the day. All sorts of small things filled me with discontent or disappointment. And that undoubtedly was ricochetting over my mood and patience. It was making communication with the people around me a real challenge. All this was creating stress and tension in me, which were so overwhelming.
So I consciously chose to let things go and smile at my watch even when it was reminding me that I am only half through my to do list. Soon I realized that this whole race was due to lack of focus and adequate prioritization. As soon as I began to clearly distinguish between the really important and necessary things, to reward myself even for the small achievements and to allow myself to let things go and just breathe, everything came into its place.
#9 DATING TIME
The relationship with my husband is just as important to me as is the one with my daughter. Until her appearance, we had all the time in the world to travel, go out and have fun. After her appearance, these moments are less frequent, but I always look forward to them. It may be once a week, but the long evenings just the two of us with even longer conversations and jokes, outings with friends, dances and cocktails are something that reminds us how nice it is to be together and share our moments. This gives us time to see where we are going, to plan our future goals and the means to achieve them. It recharges me. And when I’m happy, everything around me blossoms. Because happiness is contagious
A lot. Heartedly. The wee one is in this age when her thoughts on life and reasonsing easily throws me into uncontrollable laughter. I surrend myself to it completely. I laugh till I cry.
#11 ALLOW MYSELF TO BE IMPERFECT
There are millions of ways to raise a child. The comparisons are superfluous. I do my best and forgive myself for the mistakes I make. At the end of the day, what makes a mother good is how she handles her mistakes. I give myself the space and the right to be imperfect. Because I realize that our children love us not because we are perfect, but because we are happy in our imperfection.
One of the hardest things for me has always been delegating tasks. But motherhood and work altogether are a difficult task. So I allow myself to demand. From my daughter to tidy up her room, put on her dirty clothes in the laundry, help me with the cooking. From my husband to organize the shopping for the week and throw the trash. Small things that save me hours and leave time for things that we can do together as a family. Like walking, traveling, playing sports, or just doing nothing but being together.
I jump in puddles. I collect acorns, pinecones and conkers. I shine from happiness when I see a rainbow. I pet every dog and cat on the way. I paint with my fingers. I look for ladybugs in the park. I eat our homemade chocolate with a finger from the jar. In general, I experience the happiness of seeing the world through the eyes of a child. And believe me – this world is much more beautiful.