Randomly, at least once a day, Natasha Bedingfield’s song, Pocketful of Sunshine pops in my head like an unwelcome zit before school pictures. It’s a great song, don’t get me wrong, but as my brain finishes singing the first line, it stops itself (every single time) and says, “if you had a pocketful of sunshine, you’d be dead”. Sometimes my brain is too literal.
At six o’clock the other morning, as I was cleaning poop off Judah’s bed and just him in general (he’s getting too smart for those onesies), I threatened my brain…if it sang “Pocketful of Sunshine” at that very moment, I might lose it. Because at that very moment, I was planning my escape. I’m aware that not every mom has these moments, the ones where they just want to wave the white flag and crawl away in defeat. But I’d like to be honest with you. I have those moments often. Then of course the mom guilt rolls in with the evening tide and I belittle myself for such thoughts. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times, it’s a process folks.
I’m learning to recognize why the white flag edges it’s way into my hands. Often, the root of the problem isn’t the situation at hand. Often it’s “I’m exhausted therefore, I have no perspective” or “I haven’t had any adult contact in two days…therefore I have no perspective” or simply, “I haven’t eaten a real meal since the day before…therefore I have no perspective”.
There are a ton of bible verses and spiritual things that one could say during those times of defeat (and they’re all good); But in reality, often the white flag comes out when I haven’t taken the time to do the practical-necessary things. So yes, my advice today is: do the necessary things…sleep, eat and talk to at least one adult a day. I’m giggling as I write that, but I’m also serious. As a mother, our job is to take care of everyone, including ourselves. Often I forget or feel selfish for doing something for myself, as if sitting down to eat a meal is selfish, and guess what? Often the result is a situation where nobody is getting my best.
It’s not really all that easy to take time for ourselves and have a girls night, we aren’t always blessed with a full night’s sleep and we don’t always have time to sit down and eat a leisurely meal. But I think planning even just one thing each week that refuels us (whether your a mom or not) is one of the most beneficial things for not just us, but the entire family. It’s sort of like preventative medicine…getting ahead of the white-flag-retreating-moments and nipping them in the bud.
What’s one thing you do that refuels you on a regular basis?