Hi friends! Happy Tuesday!
Hope everyone is having a great week so far. We started the week out with a bang, celebrating Drew’s 32nd birthday yesterday.
I absolutely love his birthday and wanted to make sure my man felt very loved. I made him steak fajitas, got him the cutest custom cake, and had a golf themed present. I also wrote him 32 reasons why I love him SO darn much, as suggested by my friend and fellow blogger Alex. Thanks to Drew for being the best husband in the world and the best dada. Yesterday on his birthday, he ended up staying home with Max. Max had a cold and we thought one more day of recovering at home would really help him. The pictures of Drew letting Max sleep on him and them playing together all day melted my heart.
I was thinking about this blog post in the shower. Lately, Maxwell has been VERY attached to me. We’ve been through this before and now we’re in another phase of it. To be honest, I don’t do much research or overthink what is happening in his little mind… I just know that we’re going to love on him and we’ll all get through it. After a VERY mama needy couple of weeks, I started thinking about how I’m able to still stay happy as his mama…even though I cannot even pee alone (literally). Today I’m sharing my keys and I hope some of these work for you life too!
If you have been following along for a while, you’ve read ALL the amazing benefits of working out. I do LOVE it because it makes me feel incredible (a la Feel Better Phenomenon). I wholeheartedly believe everyone should find something that works for them and that we all should move our bodies. Mamahood comes with a great deal of challenges: everything from enormous body changes to lack of sleep to a very clingy little person. Working out helps me to stay positive because it decreases my stress, boosts my mood, gives me energy, and some time for me!
2. Get Rest When You Can.
When Max was a newborn, I always napped during his morning nap. Just like most newborns, he was up for a few hours each night. The rest was KEY for me and aided me to feel less like a zombie and more like a person. On the weekends, Drew and I would make sure to give each other time to nap if we were feeling worn down. It was a TEAM effort to make sure that everyone was getting enough sleep.
Now that we’re in toddlerhood I know how important it is to get myself to bed on time. Skimping on sleep is a mistake and can REALLY impact your mood, productivity, waist line, etc. A lot of people skimp and don’t realize there are MANY side effects of making that choice. Read more here and here.
3. Sing, “You’re Going to Miss This” to Yourself.
Maybe you aren’t all country fans, but this song has SUCH a good message. We’re all in a hurry for phases to pass or for our children to be more stable, but I KNOW I’m going to miss THESE days when Maxwell loves me more than anything in the world and he is attached to me like a little koala bear. It is going to go entirely too fast. So when the going gets tough, I sing this song in my head. I pick my little koala bear up and embrace the season that we’re in.
4. Give Yourself Pep-Talks.
Just like singing the song to myself, giving myself pep-talks really helps me. Is the voice in your head more positive or negative? We can TRAIN our brains to run on the more positive side. Because believe me, I’ve done it. I wasn’t always so positive and would let things bother me or “ruin my day” before. Now, I’m able to spin almost every situation around and see the light in it. I feel SO lucky to be a mama and have a few pep-talks in my head ready to go.
5. Don’t Think You Have To DO IT ALL.
You don’t have to do homemade baby food, cloth diapers, swim lessons, and 7 playdates a week. Figure out what best works for your schedule and don’t overextend. Drew and I decided that we don’t really need any more of our time scheduled, so we’ll wait on signing Max up for anything until he is a bit older. As an example, Max absolutely loves the water and will put his head all the way under, so we’re not too worried that we’re stunting his water development skills or anything. 😉
Another example is realizing people will UNDERSTAND if your house has a few toys lying around and your not making them a super fancy meal when they come over for a visit. We typically plan an easy meal (and easy can be absolutely delicious) for our guests. This way, you aren’t overwhelming yourself while trying to enjoy time with the people you love. When my family came over for the Packer game, I did easy peezy tacos in the slow cooker and my family loved them. This way I could spend time watching the game and with them instead of having to prepare things while they were here.
Prioritize the things that are REALLY important to you (maybe it is making homemade baby food), but don’t wear yourself out trying to be SUPER mom.
6. Ignore the Unsolicited Advice.
Just like during a lot of other phases in life, you are going to get A LOT of advice. Sometimes it is going to come out very rude or untimely. DON’T let it impact you. Of course I wish everyone had common sense, was gracious, and had manners…but, that’s not our world. Instead of letting a rude comment about your choice to breastfeed in public or bottle feed let you spiral, have confidence in your decisions. Give them a polite (maybe pointed) reply back and go about your day. I was listening to a podcast last night that said UNFOLLOW people on social media that make you feel bad about yourself and I was thinking, “Duh! That’s such a good point!” We are in control ya’ll, so take it!
7. Give Yourself Grace.
On the Today Show one morning Savannah Guthrie (who I love) was talking about how if you think you are a good mom, you probably are doing it wrong. Essentially, we should be constantly worried we are doing something wrong and we need to doubt ourselves and seek better ways.
I thought “THAT IS WHAT IS WRONG!!!!” People especially women have a tendency to be very self critical and constantly doubting themselves. I think I’m a really great mama to Max and I don’t think there is anything wrong with feeling that way. I KNOW I put him first, love him more than he will ever know, and give shower him with attention. Don’t be so hard on yourself! You are going to make a few mistakes along the way because this is true at ALL jobs. Mamahood is a constant learning curve and even if you are multiple children in, you’ll be learning something new with each one.
8. Find Some YOU Time.
This with evolve as your mamahood or daddyhood evolves. When Max was a newborn he would cry for hours at night. This wasn’t RIGHT away, but a couple weeks in. It was really hard for Drew and I, because it didn’t seem like there was a thing to do to calm him down. Since I had been caring for him all day, I would need a little break from it. Every night during his worse time stretch, I would take a 15 minute shower. I would turn Pandora on blast so there was no chance I would hear him. It was SUCH an amazing 15 minutes and I would come out ready to deal with the crying again.
Later after we were over that really tough night stretch, I would go to the gym when Drew got home from work. It was GLORIOUS.
Nowadays, Drew and I do a really great job of giving each other parenting breaks to do the things we enjoy. Drew enjoys football, golf, a dinner with a friend. I use a lot of mine to work on my blog or business in this season, but these are things that I love so much.
Are you taking breaks? Believe me, it will help your sanity!
9. Find Some Trusted Mama Advisers
10. Enjoy It.
Last but not least, ENJOY it! Realize that it is okay that it gets really hard sometimes, but you likely wouldn’t have it any other way. Don’t compare your journey with someone else’s because we’re all different and raising different kiddos. 🙂
Hope you have a great week!