Stress is common to all of us. Unfortunately, everyone feels the effects of stress at some point in their daily lives. As a mother, stress sometimes comes from the one place that should be the happiest and most fulfilling part of your life. Yes, I am talking about your kids.
Let’s be honest. Being a mom can sometimes be extremely stressful and draining. There are lots of beautiful and hysterical moments, and then there are those moments when you have the urge to go running down the street screaming your head off or curl up into a ball and cry your eyes out. Please, don’t feel guilty about feeling this way. I can assure you that you are not alone! The stresses of motherhood come from the constant care that children require, caring for little ones when they are ill, and all of those sleepless nights when your baby wants to play or sing at 2 am.
Then there are the stresses of running back and forth taking older kids to sports practices, doctor’s appointments, classes, and lessons and/or sometimes just dealing with your child’s moods. All of these demands can cause you stress and even resentment. Again, you are not alone!! This happens to all moms, and it is 100% normal to feel this way especially if you are not getting enough sleep and/or the emotional support that you need.
It’s also normal that you may feel guilty about feeling stressed and resentful. Kids are a huge responsibility, and even though you love them with all of your heart and wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world, they can stress you out and turn your hair GREY! Oh you thought those were highlights in my hair? :-)
Sometimes you just want to escape from it all. While that may not be a bad idea, jumping on the next plane for Tahiti and never coming back is a bit extreme. However, getting away for an afternoon on a regular basis might be doable, and could do wonders for you and your kids. For some moms even one afternoon doesn’t seem realistic. I have definitely been there!
If you can, ask a family member to watch the children, or trade babysitting duties with a trusted friend. Get out of the house and do something you really enjoy, whether it’s a quiet afternoon walk in the park or lunch and a movie with a friend. Even if you can only squeeze in a 10-20 minute walk to the corner, do it!
Make sure you also get away once in a while with your husband for a date night. If you are parenting alone, try to schedule time with other solo moms, join a group of other solo moms and their kids on Meetup.com, or schedule time with yourself. Sometimes just doing something as simple as putting on makeup or fixing your hair differently is all you need to put a new spin on things. Plan a “Me” night after the kids are asleep. My “Me” night consists of a bubble bath, a facial, and all of the great shows trapped in my DVR. It’s okay to get away now and then, and it will give you a chance to re-identify with yourself, your friends and/or your partner.
When you become a mother, your kids become the first priority in your life, and that is the way it should be. However, you still need balance. You need time alone, and you need to take care of yourself. Do NOT let guilt or unsolicited advice from friends and family overshadow your joy or steal your sunshine! You are a great mom! Remind yourself of that everyday!
KEEP CALM AND MOM ON!!