One of those days. It happens to be Monday, but for this SAHM (stay-at-home-mom) it can (and does) happen any day of the week. The day that starts at 2am with a three-yr-old climbing into my bed, who announces at 6am that her pull-up has leaked and she is wet (in my bed, remember?). Which to be honest, I am just now really remembering that 6am announcement with a little shock and horror that I haven’t washed the sheets (the only “good” set I own) and it is now 8:43pm and I might want to crawl into my bed soon. Also at this moment there is another three-year-old (who should be in his bed) saying, “Mommy, I want to sit in your lap.” But since I have had some person or another literally attached to me all day long, I am not really wanting the company. This is the stuff my days are made of.
Our trip to the pool (usually the highlight of the day) was torturous for us (and everyone around us) because my little ones were tired and whiny and I was just out of grace. For them, for me, for anyone. And now I am thinking I can’t, I just can’t get up and do this all again tomorrow. But I will. And the next day, and the next… For what looks like forever from where I sit. But really, I know it isn’t… I only have to think of my oldest, driving around in his own car, being his own person, not needing to sit on anyone’s lap anymore to remember how fast it went by. But still, even knowing this, it seems like the days are so long and I am so out of patience, out of grace, out of gentleness…
Some moms appear to really thrive in this environment, and I usually watch in amazement as they smile and say something soothing that actually calms their screaming child. I am not one of those moms. I am the mom who is talking to herself in soothing tones saying, “It’s only 3 more hours until bedtime. You can do this for 3 more hours” like a crazy woman. And at the end of the day, I really wonder if I am cut out for this.
So here are just a few things I am trying to remember when I have a bad day:
1. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Motherhood is the most demanding and exhausting job on earth. Give yourself a little more grace.
2. Don’t be so hard on them. They are little, they are learning, they need grace too. It is hard to teach a child self-control if you are yelling at them and pulling your own hair out. 🙂
3. Pour out your frustration to God and let Him carry the burden. It’s too heavy for you.
4. Smile. Just do it. Even if you have to force it. Put on your happy face. It does wonders for everyone around you.
5. Most importantly, remember that tomorrow is a new day, with a fresh start and a clean slate. For you and for them. Start out on a cheerful and positive note, no matter how tough the day before was.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23