Hello, hello. I am back after a two-week hiatus. I can’t tell you how good it feels to be back in my element; behind my computer, candle flickering in the background and glass of red wine within arms reach.
“Me” time has been hard to come by as of late; thus is the tune when illness hits home. A double ear infection, high fever, and rash swept Little J off her feet for five days. Sick kids are NO fun. From debating if a trip to the ER is warranted to sleeping with a squirmy, sometimes flailing, toddler in a rocking chair, a person is literally lucky to come out the other end without a black eye.
I know so many women would do anything to have these moments, as unpleasant as they might be. If you’re one of them, know that I pray for you every day. Believe me when I say, I am so grateful for my daughter and the gift of motherhood. Even when she’s sick and I can’t remember the last time I showered, brushed my teeth or ate a substantial meal, I am grateful.
That said, Motherhood often feels like a game of survival. Some days my super hero cape flutters in the wind as I clean sippy cups, play pat-a-cake, schedule doctor appointments, work a forty-hour week and load the car with groceries. Tantrums, scattered Duplos, and runny noses ain’t got nothin’ on me! Other days, I feel like I’m climbing Mount Everest, boulder strapped to my back and cape unseen.
On the days you lose sight of your cape and feel weak or incapable, you need to remember this is only temporary. You’re doing your best, mama. You will survive, come out alive and thrive.Mama Bruggeman
Today’s post is about creating space for yourself to feel grounded, internally at peace, even when the walls around you come tumbling down. It’s not easy, but it’s possible. On the days you feel helpless, ever so tempted to throw in the towel, take a moment and breathe. Breathe. And do something that brings you joy, something that makes you feel at peace in your heart. Here are a few practices I implemented this last week as we navigated the sleepless nights, tears and fears that come with a sick child.
1.) Drink Some GOOD Coffee
I love coffee. Most days I’m an original Folgers girl – with a dash of Coffee Mate, of course. (Ok, not a dash. More like a triple shot.) But on the tough days, I dig into my secret stash–the top shelf, “coffee snob” k-cups. I believe the tough days warrant good coffee; a little jungle juice for the wild that awaits!
2.) Open the Windows
There’s something about a little fresh air when you’ve been cooped up in your house for days on end. Open those windows. Let the breeze come in. Listen to the sounds of nature, the cars passing by–all will remind you of a life outside of the one you’re currently living. You’re not alone in this world. There is a world outside of yours. This moment or phase you’re in? It’s temporary. You’ll be back to your “normal,” whatever that looks like, soon enough. Hang in there.
Side Note: If you live in Minnesota, opening windows is only applicable for about 5 months out of the year…give or take a few months.
3.) Light Your Favorite Candle
I don’t know what it is about candles, but they feel like a giant hug around my heart. If you don’t have a favorite candle, I recommend you get one. And if you’re not the candle type, look into some essential oils. Scents and oils can be so soothing and instantly change one’s mood. They benefit the kiddos, too.
4.) Cut Some Corners
Desperate times call for desperate measures. You have to pick your battles when you’re down on sleep and energy. It’s ok to cut some corners; it doesn’t make you a bad mom. This past week, we used paper plates. We ate junk food. We let the laundry pile up. We left dishes in the sink. Guess what? We all survived.
5.) Take a Bubble Bath
I finally found a bubble bath product that works; Dr. Teal’s Relax & Relief with Eucalyptus and Spearmint. Truly calming and super bubbly! Go ahead and use whatever you have or whatever you can find!
6.) Neflix and Chill
I’m not one to recommend hours of mind-numbing television, but I find some degree of calm in indulging after a really rough day. My most recent guilty pleasure is Workin’ Moms. Every single episode makes me deep-belly laugh. (Definitely not appropriate for kids, debatably appropriate for dads, but undoubetdly appropriate for moms!)
7.) Call Your Mom! (Or whomever your strong female role model may be)
I find great comfort and peace in calling my mom. I appreciate her willingness to listen, offer advice, and share her own experiences as they relate to caring for, raising, and loving a child. She’s walked this road before, and I know and trust her motherly intuition, comfort and encouragement. It’s also comforting to know she loves my child beyond measure and would do anything to help us out in a time of need. I am so grateful for her love.
With that, I’m happy to report Little Miss is back at it; being mama’s shadow, dancing to her music box and grinning with mischief as she pushes food off her high chair tray. *Sigh*, I love that little stinker.
Shout out to all the hard workin’ mamas out there. You’re doing great! Give yourself a little credit and know that tough days come and go. The sun will rise tomorrow.