This year, I want to introduce a few series to the blog. One of those is Momversatoins (“mom conversations”), which are basically open and honest conversations we need to have as moms. This can be anything from the struggles we’re facing, the guilt we feel about things like being tired, tips and tricks on managing it all, and avoiding stressful situations altogether.
It’s 5:00am. I’m up two hours before the sun. My eyes are sore, begging me to go back to sleep. My body aches and every time I move, something pops. I can feel the pounding in my head as I try to lift it. I get up though, because I have to. A quick shower, no breakfast, and three goodbye kisses later, I’m driving the 35-minute commute to my 9-5 job. At work, my morning starts with blog responsibilities (whether answering emails, editing, or posting). Then, I sit through eight hours of paperwork, a heavy workload, and microaggressions. Finally, I’m back in my car, but before I can go home, I have to stop and get groceries. I run through the aisles, grabbing veggies, diapers, and milk. I carry the load to my car and then I get ready to brace the traffic. My 35-minute commute is now 55-minutes with stop-and-go the whole way there. My back hurts, my feet are sore, and I’m sleepy.
At 6:00pm, I’m grabbing the girls from daycare. First, I pop into Diari’s classroom and grab all her stuff, barely hearing the teacher tell me about how hyper she was today. I grab Diari’s hand and we head to Fatima’s room. I have to gather all of her bottles and bags and bundle her up in her jacket then transfer her to her car seat, which feels like it weighs about 75 pounds as I carry her out to the car. We run home but the day’s not over. Everyone has to eat and take a bath. I carry in the groceries, Fatima’s car seat, and Diari’s school stuff and immediately go into the kitchen. I have to start dinner. Diari is bugging me about the TV and Fatima is getting cranky. Turns out, her diaper is dirty. Diari is still nagging me. I change Fatima and sit them both down in the living room. I’m cooking dinner and Diari comes back to the kitchen asking for a snack. At this point, Fatima is also crawling as quickly as she can to the stairs or looking for a wire to chew on. Dinner’s on the stove. Then finally, almost two hours after getting home, everything gets situated. I make Diari a plate and Fatima a bottle. Now that the girls have eaten, it’s bath time. Fatima falls straight asleep after getting dressed. Now I can eat.
At 9:00pm, I’m struggling to get Diari to bed. As soon as I put her down, she walks out and asks me a question. These days, we do this until about 11:30pm, when we both finally fall asleep. I thought we had sleep training figured out but we’re going backwards. I don’t know what’s going on. Fatima wakes up at 1:00am, demanding to be fed. Diari is up shortly after, pretending she has to pee. At 3:00am, everyone is up again, asking for something new when all they really want is attention. We’re back to bed.
At 5:00am, I wake up, eyes sore, body aching, head pounding, and I do it all again.
I’m tired. But it’s not a regular kind of tired. It’s more than kicking your shoes off at the end of the day. It’s not something a good night’s sleep can fix. This “tired” isn’t even a vacation away from disappearing. Sometimes I’m so tired I break down in tears. But then I quickly have to gather myself and get back to work. I know it’s motherhood. And “everything a mother does, she does for her child.” But this isn’t healthy. We are still people.
So moms, as we enter 2020, think of new ways to give yourself a break. We deserve it. Your health is the most important thing you can give to your kids. Here are a few tips to help you get started on better caring for you.
Hire a Babysitter
I don’t care what anyone says about this. Moms are people too. Don’t let anyone shame you out of it. Go to care.com or ask people in your network to find a trustworthy person that you can leave your kids with for a few hours occasionally. I found three babysitters so that if I ever need a break or if I have something to do that would be easier to accomplish without the kids, I’m set.
Pick a TV Series, and Binge Watch It
Netflix is full of binge-worthy shows right now. I recently went through You (fun, mystery drama), The Office (comedy), and Grey’s Anatomy (medical drama). If you need more variety, get Prime or Hulu or Starz, whatever has shows or movies you’d want to watch.
Cook Your Favorite Meal
I don’t mean a big meal that is supposed to last the family a whole week – no. I mean like when I’m craving lobster ravioli or crab cakes. Go online and find a recipe for some of your favorite dishes and make that one Sunday afternoon so you can enjoy while binge-watching.
Melatonin is a natural sleep hormone that already exists in our bodies. As we get older, though, we make less melatonin. You can pick up melatonin at pretty much any local pharmacy and it’s safe for the whole family. You can use it to help yourself sleep as well as your kids. Motherhood is so much harder without sleep, trust me. And at this point, if I don’t get back on a sleep schedule soon, I might have to fight both of my kids!
Call an Adult
You don’t realize how important this is until you spend a whole weekend or longer surrounded by kids! *Stay-At-Home-Mom is a real job and it’s hard af!* It’s important to have adult conversations to bring you back to sanity. It doesn’t need to be a long call, but make an effort to reach out to someone in your life that can take your mind off of the baby noises and the, “stop,” “put that down,” and “don’t do that to your sister.”
Share Your Tips
I hope this helps someone! Please share some of your tips for staying sane down below! For all of our sake, let’s have more “momversations.”