“Let’s just have one more…” Whether you have uttered these words or heard these words from your spouse, most parents have considered if they could handle a plus one to their current lifestyle. From more bottles and diaper changes to added expenses and stress levels, we all want to give our children the best while still being able to manage our own lives. If you have taken the plunge and are preparing for that extra seat at the table or are living the life, here are some tips for how to keep your sanity in the coming years.
To start, acknowledge the obvious - this is hard stuff! Not every day will look like a scrapbook shot of the perfect family, not every meal will be post worthy and certainly not every arts and crafts project will be on your Pinterest page - and that is just fine. Being present for our children is the best gift that we can give them, and that means just allowing ourselves to be normal for our little ones. Let your kids see how you clean up your messes in life, and they will be able to take those coping skills along with them through their own spills in life.
Next, take a look at what you do well and really accentuate that skill. Do you love to be silly with your kids? Then have a puppet show where you get to give them a giggle. Do you enjoy being outdoors? Then take your kids on an exploration hike to see their world. Involving all of your children together in family fun allows them to build camaraderie and love for each other while also learning how to work out their own difficulties.
Finally, remember that the mommy journey is meant to be shared. No one ever has a perfect day, sharing those ups and downs with someone who is right there beside you during these few short years is priceless. Find a group of local moms who you can meet with on a regular basis to laugh, cry and problem solve through these days. So that you can love and enjoy your children as they grow.
By Kristen Herlihy, Owner & Instructor of Baby Boot Camp Burlington, Woburn & Winchester, MA