Tag Archives: stress

Chocolate and Peanut Butter

It is seriously one of the most gorgeous days of the summer, and my kiddos and I are stuck inside. Booo! The little lady is sick, and hasn’t made it off the couch much today, poor thing. As I sit here and watch the gorgeous sunshine outside, feeling like I am up to my neck in responsibilities, I can’t help but start absolutely PINING for fall. I love fall. The air, the leaves, the food, the sweatshirts and cardigans. Fall is my happy place (as showcased by today’s photos).

In tackling really oppressively un-fun days like today, I think it’s important to have a plan and to know your happy place or places. You know, the things that will help you keep perspective and trudging along until bedtime. Not that I am an expert in stress management (just ask my husband), but I thought I would share a few things I try when i am on the brink a major mommy meltdown.

1. GO to your happy place, whether mentally, physically, spiritually, whatever it takes. If saying a quick prayer helps, say it. If looking at a picture of happier times lifts you up, look at it. If sitting on your front stoop, simply breathing air in and out of your lungs brings your blood pressure down, go sit! In considering everyone’s sanity, it is preferable to get to this place before you are a crying, screaming looney-tune.

2. Eat something that consists of these two important main ingredients: chocolate and peanut butter. I am not ashamed that I have had two Reese’s today, and I might have another one later. I might be a diet cheater, but I’m smiling.

3. Sing and dance along with your favorite song. Come on now, go for it. Be dramatic. In choosing said song, it is important to recognize song choice. No elevator music will do. I typically go with either a super upbeat tune, like Justin Timberlake’s Sexyback, which makes me feel like a sassy domestic goddess, or a really sad, deep track that reminds me that life could always be worse, like Ray Lamontagne’s Jolene (this song seriously hurts my heart).

4. Call your mom/best friend/go to person. Just spoke with my mom a couple hours ago. When your kids are sick, you need someone to acknowledge your hard work. Friends and moms are perfect for this affirmation!! They will always offer advice and boost your confidence as a mothering force to be reckoned with, which will ultimately give you that extra push to get through the day.

5. Purge. There is something so stinking awesome about de-cluttering your house. Go quickly through the house with a box or bag, and fill it with items you no longer use/need (like your husband’s shirts from 1990 that your secretly hate, but he loves). This is a quick way to make you feel more productive and less overwhelmed. Then, on a less stressful day, be sure to get the items to an appropriate charitable organization. Everyone wins.

6. If possible, take a shower. Not smelling stinky and having clean hair will work wonders for your attitude. Plus, when you look in the mirror, you won’t feel so startled by your messy reflection. For a special treat and if time allows, shave your legs. 🙂

7. Try not to over-react. No one wants their kids to be sick, but don’t scare the crap out of them and treat them like their fever or runny nose is the end of life as we know it. Plus, thinking that way will only freak yourself out more. Worry when worry is due, but trust your abilities and instincts.

8. Finally, don’t take yourself too seriously, and don’t try to do it all. Clean the house tomorrow. The laundry will wait. Look at your imperfect house as a reminder that time is fleeting, and one day your little babies won’t be there to take care of anymore. Give lots of hugs and kisses (to your family, not to others. Try your very best not to get anyone else sick, or you will just feel like a jerk, which will ultimately just make things worse!) and embrace your role as an imperfect mommy.

Hope this helps, if even in some small way. Now, back to the trenches.

Cheers,

The Mommy Diarist

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10 things I have in common with my baby girl

Currently, there is A LOT of personality in my house, mostly as exhibited by my free-spirited, self-dressing, strong-willed little girl. We are starting to be so much a like, it is scary. Not only for me, but also for my husband. Neither of us is sure he can handle us both under the same roof. In my quest to find a way to adequately set boundaries for her smarty-pants, independent nature, I often think about what I would want, and try to go that route. Ultimately, that fails, too, but I figure it’s worth a shot, right?

Let the record show:

1. We both have ridiculously crazy hair in the morning. I am not quite sure what happens while I am sleeping, but my hair resembles some sort of dirty grunge rock, Flock of Seagulls hybrid in the morning. But, when I see my baby girl’s hair, it makes me feel better. Is that wrong? I so wished she would’ve got her daddy’s thick, curly mop.

2. We both LOVE to eat out. I’ll ask her what she wants for lunch, and she typically responds with one of two answers–jelly sandwich (which I also love) or “go out to eat.” Panera is a favorite, for sure. They have Organic Mac-n-Cheese for the kid, and the calories are listed on the menu, which typically guilts me into eating something somewhat healthy.

3. Sort of in-line with #2, we both are obsessed with feta cheese. We can both just sit and eat it plain, which simply makes me love her more.

4. We are both sort of scared to try new things, but we feign courage and do it anyway. She is terrified by the balance beam, but giggles her way through it just to prove that she can.

5. Everytime we venture into Target, we both get our hearts set on something that deep-down we know we don’t need. Then, when we get it home, we play with it for a minute, then, it sits in a corner. Most recently, I got a pair of cute shoes that are ridiculously uncomfortable, and she got a pair of goggles that she absolutely hates to have on her head. Both will probably never be used, but we like to keep them around, just in case.

5. We are both very social and constantly feel the need to be around people, but at the same time, we are kind of shy and awkward until we feel comfortable.

6. We both have very, very active imaginations. She is always telling me about the giant in her clubhouse or serving me a “pretend” strawberry-banana smoothie. I asked her to tell me a story the other night, and she started, “Once upon a time, there were three mangoes…” When I was a child, I used to scare the neighborhood kids with stories about children getting lost forever in a giant storm drain behind my house. I am definitely anticipating phone calls from angry parents to discuss the things that she has disclosed to classmates at school. Sorry mom.

7. We both have a trademark gap between our two front teeth. Hers is exacerbated by thumb-sucking, a habit I luckily gave up years ago. 🙂

8. Both of us maintain a ridiculously accurate memory (another reason my husband is in trouble), and I am amazed at how clear she remembers seemingly insignificant details about things and people. Recently, she has been obsessed with learning peoples’ FULL names, and can cite them with ridiculous accuracy.

9. We have both perfected the art of whining about things until we get our way. This, coupled with the fact that we are incredibly stubborn and get bored very easily, makes a lot of days a struggle to get through, especially since she struggles to accept the fact that her baby brother is here to stay and we can’t just leave him home to fend for himself.

10. Finally, I am learning to accept that we are both very emotional. She has a huge heart, as do I, and we both get our feelings hurt fairly easily. This will be tough for her down the road, and I cringe at the thought of boyfriends, break-ups and broken dreams. We bounce back, but we don’t forget.

I could go on, but I’ll stop here. I’ve gotta tell you, this entry today is more like therapy, as it gets harder and harder to parent such a strong little lady. Somedays, I just don’t see how we are both going to survive, while others I can’t imagine loving her anymore than I do. Sometimes I think I do everything wrong, and recently, I am stuck in a rut.

So, for now, let me just say that I love, love, LOVE my daughter, but sometimes, I just don’t like her, mostly because she is too much like me. Often, while she is running away in a fit to tell her daddy how mean I am, I think maybe I should’ve been nicer to my mom…..One of the most painful life lessons to learn: payback is most definitely a B!$#&!

Wow! Little bit of a Debbie-downer there towards the end, but I feel better. Gotta shake it off. Thanks for reading and staying with me.

Cheers,

Mommydiarist