“No! No one say “mom” one more time or I will walk straight out that door!”
We’ve all been there, right? That place in motherhood when it feels like there isn’t one single second in any 24 hour period in which someone doesn’t need something from you. It’s exhausting! It brings you right to the brink of your sanity. In the darkest moments the nut house actually begins to resemble a spa getaway in your mind and you just need to breathe!
You know it’s just a stage. You won’t always be in this place. Yeah, yeah- that’s all fine and dandy, but how do you get through it when you’re in the trenches? How do you make sure you come out on the other side without a prominent twitch?
It’s almost funny that I’m writing this post, because many days I feel like I just don’t know. However, I have found a few tricks to tuck up my sleeve that keep me just far enough from the edge that I don’t topple over, and today I’m going to share them with you!
1. Wake up before the minions. I know, it sounds downright torturous to think about prying your eyes open any earlier than you absolutely have to, but even if 10 or 15 minutes is all you can muster it gives you the leg up. Just being able to shortly wrap your head around the day, take a deep breath and brace yourself for the constant flow of what’s to come can help things feel a little less overwhelming.
2. Find ways to sneak in Jesus. Pray, first of all, and then work His Word into your day however you can. Make it accessible. Have an open Bible next to the sink. Post verses in spots you frequent throughout the day. Play an audio Bible while you’re cleaning house. Have a Bible app on your phone so that even if you can only sneak in a few minutes you have the resources at your fingertips to take advantage of those times. Abide in the Word however you can.
3. Make podcasts your best friend! By about 4:00 each day I am officially on the verge! We call it the witching hour around these parts. It’s when dinner time is still just a smidge off but little people are getting hungry and melting down and mommy just needs to hear another adult voice!
Pop on the podcast, baby!
Sometimes I’ll choose something goofy like my favorite morning radio show to lighten my mood. Sometimes I’ll go with great interviews or learning on a topic of interest. Other times I’ll find myself immersed in a great Bible Study. Whatever it is you choose, there’s something about it that helps take the edge off and make you feel a little less desperate while you’re chopping veggies and chicken with little people clung to your legs.
4. Create a bathroom stash. Seriously, I know they’ll come calling for you there too, but if even for a few minutes you are able to steal away to take a deep breath, eat a piece of chocolate and read a page or two from a fun novel that can whisk you away to some far off land, you have taken one step closer to staying out of the loony bin!
**Secret Survival Kit Stashing Tip- hide your essential survival chocolate, book, and whatever else may help you in a quick moment of rejuvenation, some place inconspicuous. May I suggest underneath the feminine hygiene products or even inside the box? I pretty much guarantee that you won’t be found out there!**
5. Lay aside the distractions. Sometimes I find that those moments when I am getting the most desperate and loopy from the constant requests are also the times that I am the most distracted and wanting, or maybe even needing, to do something besides attending to my kiddos. Anything else!
But may I suggest something counter-intuitive? Lay those things aside. Literally put your distractions in another room if you have to! Look your children in the eye and really listen to them. Pull out a book and snuggle on the couch. Play a quick board game. Do an art project or even just sit and listen to them explain their latest Lego creation. Chances are that those few minutes of undivided attention will soothe more of their “needs” than the hurried answers to their zillion questions. Stopping everything to just be together helps calm everyone’s frayed nerves and keeps you all content for longer.
So, cuddle them, snuggle them, and love them to bits, but when you just can’t respond to one more plea or referee one more argument… take your book and chocolate and hide in the bathroom!
Find out more about how I’m living in the trenches of motherhood on my blog- BoldTurquoise.com.