The time period when a family has young children is a time that’s often considered very stressful. There’s always alot going on with young kids, especially when there is more than one.
They say going from one child to two can be quite shocking. After that they say it’s usually fairly easy. I found that with mine. Having just one child was a breeze! A walk in the park. Looking back it seems like I had all the time in the world. We went on walks, went to different mum and baby groups, I used to take Mr. T. to movies for mummies. When he was napping I worked out, cooked, cleaned, did laundry, caught up with friends, and even managed to sit down and watch a little t.v.
And then there were two….what a difference! I feel like I spend my entire day cleaning up (although you would never know it to look at my house), cooking,doing laundry, running errands, trying to calm one child or another down. Dealing with tantrums, blow ups, poop, runny noses, screams,and injuries. Trying to prevent major accidents from occuring, trying to prevent my two children from hurting each other over some silly toy. Trying to find new and exciting things to do with my kids together! Something they both can participate in..not an easy thign to do. I am constantly cleaning up spills and thrown food. Changing diapers, wiping bums, cleaning up some sort of bodily fluid. Attempting to get out of the house in time to make it to one event or another, one playdate or another.
Sometimes by the end of the day I feel frazzled. I rarely have a moment to sit. And it’s not even like the kind of thing where you’re just on your feet all day so you’re tired. It is mentally drained, physically drained and emotionally drained!
Sometimes the screaming and whining and demands get to me. I often think “what about my needs???” I would like to go pee without someone beside me demanding that I lift them up or get them a snack, or rub their back. I would like to be able to eat my meal in one go…rather than take a bite, get up to get someone water, take a bite, pick up the fork that has been flung across the room, take a bite, go get napkins, take a bite, clean up the spilled milk all over the floor, take a bite…put in a movie, take a bite…get some yogurt…and on and on and on. Before I know it lunchtime is over, it’s time to get the kids cleaned up for nap and I’ve still got half my lunch left uneated on a plate!
I feel like I’m a top. You know one of those toys that are wound up and you let them go and they go spinning all over the floor? I feel like my day is spent being wound and wound and wound and then when the kids are asleep I can finally let go and I spin out of control. I feel so sad to admit this but some days I count down the hours until the kids will be asleep and I’ll have some time alone. I feel terrible just saying that!
I’m not going to lie, raising young children is stressful. In fact, raising children in general is stressful. I haven’t hit to later years yet but I can tell you I’m not looking forward to the teenagers that will take over my house before you know it! Hats off to stay at home mum’s or more so single mum’s! How do they do it? Mum’s with 4,5,6 kids! Mum’s who work two jobs and still come home to take care of their children. Mum’s who even if they aren’t single might as well be with the effort their husbands put into the children.
I am so blessed. I have two wonderful children. I have a supportive, hands on husband who is not just willing but WANTS to play a huge role in raising his children. Who has never shied away from a dirty diaper or terrible two tantrum. Who has taken his children to mum and baby playgroups and been the only dad there! I have a huge support system of family nearby who when I really need a break will come and play with the kids, or babysit so Mr. C and I can go see a movie or do some shopping alone.
It is very easy to dwell on the stressful part of all of this. The hard part. To get caught up in all of that and to focus on the negative instead of the positive. I tend to be the kind of person who does just that. I dwell on negatives way too much. I was once told that I catastrophize things. Meaning that I can take a situation, figure out what the worst possible outcome of that situation is and multiply it by about 100 and can be sure that that’s how it’s going to turn out for me. I have a hard time dealing with things that go off my planned path. I get myself all in a tizzy over the silliest things. I kind of expect everything to be perfect and when it’s not I blame myself for that and feel like somehow I’ve failed.
So my lesson for today is not to dwell on the stressful part but instead to focus on the positives. Even when I feel completely overwhelmed by life I think the key to getting through it all is to remain positive and focused.
So what I would like to do is to try and focus on one positive thing every single day. One thing about my kids and my life in general that is positive. I’m hoping that this will help me not to dwell on the stressful part of life. We all know that life is always going to come with stresses of one kind or another and I don’t want to spend the rest of my life focused on the stressors and thinking that if I just do one thing differently I won’t have any stress anymore. I am going to focus on what’s good gosh darnnit! Cause I have a whole hell of a lot of good in my life!
I am going to try and log one thing every single day. Something that I am thankful for. Now I’m going to be the first to admit that I may miss a day here or there. I hope not to but if I do I will try and make up for it the next day by posting two things I am thankful for! You also may find that there will be days where my entire blog post is one line. Just the thing I’m thankful for and that’s it,cause that’s all I can squeeze in..but that’s ok. Cause other days when I have some time and I feel the creative urge I will continue to write and post some thoughts and share some feelings. But I always want to include my positive thought of the day. Let’s see if doing this helps me to become more of a positive person and helps me to let go of some of the anxieties and stress I carry around with me.
Here I go…my first positive…hmmm it’s a hard one cause I’ve had lots of happy moments today that I’m thankful for but let’s start…
I am thankful for:
Seeing the joy in Mr. T’s face when I spent just half an hour playing cars with him this morning. Just me and him while Ms. J napped. It doesn’t take much to make him happy and he smiled a smile of pure happiness to just get some alone time with his mummy today, doing something he loves to do, playing cars. I am thankful that I was able to do something to bring Mr. T. joy and happiness today.
There, I feel better already…let’s see what tomorrow brings!