Being a stay-at-home mom is truly an amazing blessing & opportunity to have…however, at times it can also feel like a curse. I’ve been able to experience both of my kids “firsts.” The first time they rolled over. The first time they crawled. Their first steps. First words. First time telling me off… I’ve witnessed every wonderful, exciting thing my children have gone through…even the not so fun things.
It’s all been wonderful, except for the whole telling me off thing. It’s fun, it’s rewarding, it’s fulfilling, but it’s also exhausting & hard. So friggin’ hard.
As a parent it is SO easy to get so wrapped up in the lives of our children that we completely lose ourselves. Our kids come first. Everything for them comes first-school, sports, play dates. We put ourselves last. Or at least I always have.
It’s a 24/7 job. All day, every day. Nights. Weekends. Holidays. We don’t get sick days. We don’t get big fat paychecks. It doesn’t take much before you are stuck in a rut, feeling overwhelmed & stressed. Annoyed. Impatient. Tired.
For the last 7 years I’ve learned a few things that really help me in keeping my head on straight. So the next time you’re feeling like you’re going to lose your mind, try some of these & see if it helps. If it doesn’t, add a little wine. That should do the trick.
Every day remind yourself that you are a super woman. You kick ass. You work non-stop & get paid in sticking hands. It takes a seriously strong person to do this on a daily basis.
Find a type of exercise where you can just lose yourself. Pound out all the tension & stress. Whether you do it at home, at the gym or join a class. Find something you will look forward to doing every day (or at least a few times a week). For me, putting my ear buds in my ear with my music blasting (I seriously fear for my hearing) & running is my greatest stress reliever. I always say you know it’s a good run when you puke or cry. Not to mention, we want to be healthy for our babies.
Join the PTO/volunteer at the school
The absolute last person anyone thought would join the PTO would be me. But I love it. It keeps me involved in my kids lives. It’s nice to know what is going on at the school. Knowing the teachers. It’s rewarding to help & I’ve made some seriously awesome Mom friends.
Find a hobby
Working out is one of mine. Shopping is another one, but my husband reads my blogs, so we’ll just leave that one out. Find something that interests you, even if you only do it once a week. Or once a month. Having something to look forward to helps enough.
Read a book or two. Or ten
I recently started reading books & was so surprised at how relaxing it is. Even though I’m in my own house with everyone around me, it’s my own “me time” to get lost in a book for a few hours. Take a nice hot bubble bath, grab a glass of wine & read a chapter or two.
Don’t be afraid to take a nap
Yes, I’m aware of all the snide comments people make about stay-at-home moms. ‘You don’t work,’ ‘You’re on a permanent vacation,’ ‘Do you eat bon bons & watch soap operas all day.’ I’ve heard them all. And trust me, once you’re kids are in school full time & you’re STILL a stay-at-home mom, you’re opened up to a whole new level of snide comments. If my kids are gone all day, what do I do all day? Nap? Actually yes, if I’m tired enough I’ll take a goddamn nap. I deserve one. Hell, we deserve a dozen. If we are overrun & overtired we can’t give our kids our all. We can’t even give ourselves our all. Take the nap…it’s good for your skin too 😉
Clean out your closet/reorganize YOUR stuff
I bet 90% of you have neglected your own stuff while your kids everything is up to par. Spending some time making YOUR own stuff neat, organized & pretty is so rewarding. We forget that we can have nice things too. Something as small as reorganizing my closet makes me feel like a brand new person. Like suddenly my life is in order now that my Jimmy Choo’s are neatly lined up.
Catch up on your shows
If you’re like me then you have a dozen shows waiting for you on the DVR. And again, if you’re like me you have major guilt in just sitting down & watching tv. SIT. Just like the nap thing, sit & watch a show or two. Even if you’re folding laundry while you do it (this helps me justify it a little). Sit & lose yourself in Chicago Fire for an hour or two. Severide is seriously hot, it’s worth it.
Put on some music
This is another thing I do while cleaning up around the house. It makes the chores a little less daunting. Some days I tell Alexa to put on Blake Shelton. Some days I ask for Backstreet boys or New Kids on The Block, other days I ask for Metallica. It’s all about the balance, baby. Music is proven to improve our moods & it makes doing the dishes go by a lot quicker.
Sit down & eat a meal
I still struggle with this one. I’m always running around whether it’s doing stuff around the house, running errands/grocery shopping, helping at the school or being a Mom taxi, I never take the time to sit & eat. I’ll just grab a quick snack & eat on the go once the headache kicks in reminding me I haven’t eaten all day. On the rare occasion I do sit down & eat an actual meal, I feel refreshed. Ready to tackle more. The best is when I make myself some lunch & sit in front of the tv to watch a show on the DVR. Those are the days I really feel like I’ve grabbed the world by the balls & figured shit out.
I really hope this list helps, even a little. Remember, being a mom is hard stuff, but it’s a lot harder when you’re a zombie of yourself that’s overworked & neglected.