Helped by the Unexpected

Have you ever had one of those days, that nothing goes right?  Sure, we all have.  Yesterday was that day for me.  I’m a pretty optimistic person, but I think we all have a little dread in our hearts when Monday rolls around.

I woke up yesterday at 4:15 to the sound of my eldest son blowing his nose.  Nice alarm clock, don’t you think?  I never went back to sleep after that, finally getting out of bed at 5:30.

That was unexpected.

unexpected screws up

I like to plan my day and normally adhere pretty well to my schedule, but when you start your day in an unexpected way, at an unexpected time, it sort of sets the tone for the day.  Not exactly a good tone either.  But trying to remain positive, I found some motivation and strength somewhere deep inside.  Coffee may have played a role in that, but motivation and strength, nonetheless.

I went to work on laundry, chores and was making good progress on my “to-do” list.  All the while, dropping about everything I touched, to the point I thought I should not look at anything, because it might just throw itself on the floor, to save it the suspense of who’s next.

Then I remembered I had to make a phone call about some personal matters.  Ugh.  Two hours later after a torturous conversation and a ridiculous amount of time filling out online forms, my schedule went right out the window.

So now it’s only lunch time, I’ve picked up nearly everything in the house. Twice.  I’m stressed about something completely out of my control.

~sigh~

Does this ever happen to you?  Thankfully last night was the monthly homemaker’s meeting.  The topic for discussion?  Stress management.  What could be more fitting?

We talked about the different types of stress and how to cope with it.  Even though we didn’t talk specifically about my stressor, we discussed stresses that are out of our control.  I found it so helpful.

It’s good to be reminded that you can’t do everything, some things are beyond your control, and no one is perfect.

unexpected lesson

Everyone experiences stress.  EVERYONE.  Young, old, single, married, it shows no discrimination.

For me a big stress is the unexpected.  I am doing so much better with it, mostly due to being a mom.  Once a child is in your life, the unexpected just becomes the norm.  When you have four children, like I do, having something expected happen, becomes the crazy.

Just remember you’re not alone.

Stress can do so much to you body and mind without us being aware of it.  It can hurt us and our relationships with those we love.  It can cause illness.

Don’t let it take control.  Little bits of stress (like my day Monday), can add up before you know it.  Talk about it, take a walk, read a book, find a way that works for you, but relieve that stress.

Here are a couple of links about stress if you are interested…

Stress Management – Learn to Prevent and Reduce Stress

Stress Management – Healthy Lifestyle

How do you relieve stress?  I’d love to hear your ideas!

Similar posts:

A Mother’s Worry

No Mommy’s Perfect

Thanks for stopping by! ~Kim~

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Who I am: October Edition

I blinked my eyes and the beginning of October came and went.  Halloween is fast approaching and I am not doing a good job of creating a blogging schedule.  I apologize to you all.

This month’s “Who I Am” post took some thinking.  It’s probably the most obvious thing about me, but I struggled with whether I should write about it or not.  Wondering what you, my reader, might think.  What the reaction would be.

Well, here it goes.

I am a mom.

A mother.

You’re probably thinking, “It’s October and you are just now writing about this?  Why the hesitation?”

Because I didn’t always want to be a mom.

It wasn’t even on my radar.  At all.

I’ve heard other moms say that they couldn’t wait to have a baby, it was their “life-long dream,” or their “purpose.”  I would think, “wow!  Motherhood was their goal?”

I didn’t understand.

Growing up, I wasn’t around babies or little ones very much.  I was an only child.  My cousins had little ones (that I LOVE!), but we lived far from them.  I didn’t experience a lot of the growing-up process, as I would only see them a few times a year.

Honestly, it really didn’t occur to me how little I knew about babies until I started dating my husband.  He is from a large family (11 kids)!  As you can imagine, his life experiences and view of things was much different than mine.  He is the third youngest so, by that time, most of his brothers and sisters were married with kids.

We would visit his siblings often, especially his one sister and her husband.  They just had a baby about the time we started dating.  Seeing, my then boyfriend, interact with the new little baby amazed me.

I’m talking life altering amazed.  He was so natural.  So happy.

You could just feel how much he enjoyed the baby.

Thinking back, I can still picture him holding his little nephew, laughing and talking to him.

I know it sounds crazy, but I knew that moment, that I wanted to be a mom.  Without a doubt.

I FINALLY understood the “dream.”  Feeling the happiness and love, I knew I wanted that too.

Now that I am a mom I can’t imagine a life without my kids.

They fill every day with wonder and adventure.  Fun and laughter.

They inspire me to be better.  They give me new purpose.

They teach me more than I think I can ever teach them.

They are my joy.

I love them and I love being a mom!

I read this once, and I can truly say, that

“My greatest blessings call me ‘mom!'”

 

If you missed any past “Who I Am” posts, check them out here:

Who I Am: February

Who I Am: March

Who I Am: April

Who I Am: May

Who I Am: June

Who I Am: July

Who I Am: August

Who I Am: September

 

Did you always know you wanted to be a parent?

 

Thanks for stopping in…Kim

Let Me Share….

Long time, no post.  With the exception of the Who I Am for August, I have been missing from the blog world!  Don’t think it has been because I have forgotten all of you lovely folks!  It’s just, well, life happened.  We were able to squeeze in a family vacation before school started, I’ve been preserving garden harvest, the kids started school, etc……

Instead of telling you a step by step narrative of what my life has been, I wanted to try something fun, and well, easier 😉  Over the last month or so I have been reminded of a lot and learned some new things that I want to share, so here it goes….in no particular order…..

  1. Raccoons are smart little creatures.  They like the taste of chicken, my chickens to be exact.  I don’t like raccoons.
  2. Watching kids play with a broken 15 foot piece of clothes line, like it’s a jump rope, is funny.
  3. I miss my clothesline.
  4. You can sometimes find dependable people are ones you may least expect.
  5. My kids are awesome.
  6. Some people will let you down.  Some people will let your kids down.  I don’t want to be that person.
  7. Much wisdom can be gained while picking berries with someone 30 years your senior.
  8. Blackberries taste better when you pick them.
  9. Sending your kids off to school after summer break doesn’t get easier.  Ever.
  10. Never leave for a family vacation without extra blankets, especially if 3 boys share one bed.
  11. The days spent canning are well spent, especially when your son explains how much better food tastes if it’s homegrown.
  12. Holding your tongue can be hard sometimes.  Really hard.  But it’s often the best thing to do.
  13. It’s hard not to judge those that judge you.
  14. My youngest son hates school in the morning, but thinks it’s “awesome” by afternoon.  I wonder his feelings on mornings? 😉
  15. My husband does a lot of things to help me.  A lot.  I see it everyday, but I don’t always get the opportunity to thank him (I need to do better).
  16. My husband is amazing
  17. I like how my house looks when it’s decorated for Independence Day, that’s why it still is.
  18. My baby is five months old.  FIVE MONTHS???? When did that happen??!!??
  19. Being patient, especially with those you love, results in a better outcome than the alternative.
  20. Your children notice how you treat others.
  21. Children possess more wisdom than most adults are willing to give them credit for; listen to them, you may learn something.
  22. Kindness is awesome, remembered, and often reciprocated.
  23. Don’t be disappointed in “unanswered” prayers.  The Lord sees all, knows all, and although His answer to your prayer may be different from what you expected, it will be ok.
  24. Putting an end to procrastination is difficult.
  25. I have missed blogging.  Way more than I realized until I sat down to write this post!

There you have it!  I could go on, but 25 seems like a nice number.  It’s funny, sometimes, how one little thing can remind you of something you’ve known all along to be true.  It can open your eyes and remind you to be thankful, kind, understanding, etc.

Do you have any tidbits you’d like to share from your life experiences?  Or stories that go along with what I’ve shared?  I would love to hear them, just post a comment below!

Stop over and follow me on FacebookTwitter, and/or sign up for emails over to the left side of the screen!

Thanks for stopping by!       ~Kim

A Mother’s Worry

I’m a worrier. I admit it. I think I always have been. In college it was actually so bad I began having anxiety attacks.   Not fun. I worry about a number of things. Some unimportant, some silly, some serious. I’m proud to say that I do so much better now than when I was younger. I have learned to realize that there are some things that I just cannot change, and so there is no use in worrying. Maybe that’s why I have always been fond of this prayer…..

image

It pretty much sums up how one should look at the world. And a majority of the time this way of thinking has given me much relief. Thankfully.

Then I became a mom. Four little lives dependent on my husband and me for their every need. Reason to worry? Definitely. And I do, but not as often as the old me would have. I have grown stronger in my faith. I have a husband to lean on and help me. I have strong, healthy, beautiful children. We are blessed.

Of course being a mom means that worry never completely leaves you. I try to be strong for my family.

Today I face a test, albeit small, it’s still a test. Our youngest son W, has to have a tooth worked on at the dentist. They say it didn’t form correctly, causing rapid decay. He, of course, is oblivious to what will happen. I have told him the dentist will fix it and that he needs to listen to him and be good. He replied with an upbeat “ok Mom!” I worry.

He is excited about going to the dentist. His tooth hurts and they will make it better. I worry. I have always been afraid of the dentist (for absolutely no reason). I don’t want to pass this fear on to my children. I worry some more.

I know many parents face much more terrifying and difficult things with their children. I know that tomorrow my worry will be silly. But I’m a parent. A mom, and so still I worry.

My worry reminds me what the Good Book says:

“And which of you by worrying can add even one hour to his life?” (Matthew 6:27)

And so I say a little prayer for my little man.

I pray that all goes smoothly and he leaves his appointment as upbeat and unafraid as he arrived.

I. Pray.

Little Things Still Matter

When my kids are grown, what will be their most cherished memory of childhood? What do I do to make them feel loved?

Do you ever ask yourself these questions? In my post No Mommy’s Perfect, I briefly touched on the parenting question, “am I good enough.” It’s something we all wonder at one time or another. Well, this morning I happened on an article by Erin Kurt, titled “The Top 10 Things Children Really Want Their Parents to Do With Them.” The author was a long time teacher, who every Mother’s Day would ask her students what they think good moms (guardians) do. I loved their answers. LOVED them!!!! Reading through them actually brought tears to my eyes. Call it postpartum hormones, or call it joy in knowing that the little things still matter! It just made my heart feel good ❤

I urge you to read this short, but sweet article, then share it with every parent and grandparent you know. After reading it myself, I can't wait to ask my kids what they think good parents do. I challenge you to do the same and feel free to share!

No Mommy’s Perfect

I apologize for not posting something recently.  As you may know,  my family has been super busy preparing for the arrival of baby number four! Between trying to get as much done as possible, while keeping up with the cleaning and laundry, and finding time to take the much-needed breaks, our house has been a bit crazy!  So this post will be a bit brief, but I had to share my thoughts with you.

During a break yesterday, I saw a news story that both saddened me and got me thinking. They talked about moms that take antidepressants anti-anxiety medications to get through the day.

First let me say, I completely understand that there are medical circumstances that deem these medications completely necessary for one’s mental health. I do not intend to pass judgement on anyone who uses, or has used these types of medications.  That decision is between an individual and their doctor.  So for the rest of this discussion, I want to set aside the medical aspect of this because, well, I’m just a mom, and I am not qualified to really discuss it. Being a mom, however I am qualified to discuss the difficulties we all share in our journey of mommyhood.

The moms interviewed in the news story expressed feelings of inadequacy. The feeling of being overwhelmed by the day-to-day responsibilities placed on a mom. I can totally relate to this.  Mom or dad, we all face these types of feelings, to some degree, and struggle with the ultimate question: am I a good parent? But what is “good?” What justifies a good parent varies so greatly from family to family. Most would probably agree it includes providing a safe, healthy environment filled with nurturing and love. But everyone achieves this in their own unique way, which is very much influenced by their own upbringing and beliefs.

I think what is important to remember is just because one family’s methods are different from our own does not make it wrong. I believe when we start comparing our parenting and family dynamics to those of another family, it contributes to the feelings of inadequacy. Often in comparing, we only point out those things we perceive the other mom is better at doing. Notice I say “perceive” because it’s not necessarily better, but different.

As for feeling overwhelmed. I believe it is so natural to feel this way. Whether the kids are extra rowdy energetic one day, financial situations are a concern, maybe you’re a working mom, or maybe it’s just one of those days that you feel like if it can go wrong, it will, everyone has been there. Yes everyone. You are not alone. I also think it’s hard because we feel we are expected to control our child’s actions. We aren’t. It is our job to give guidance (and discipline, when necessary) so that our children can learn to make the right behavioral decisions on their own. So what am I saying? Children misbehave, it is normal. It is how they learn their limits; what is right and wrong. Is it overwhelming? Absolutely!! Is it frustrating? Most definitely. Is there something wrong with you or your child? NO.

We need to stop comparing ourselves to who we perceive as the perfect mom. No one is perfect.  No one.  We need to realize that every family, large and small, young children or grown, all face difficulties. Each stage of child development presents new challenges, a chance to learn and grow with your child. Remember that no way is the only way or the right way. The sooner we can learn this and be supportive of each other as moms parents human beings, the sooner these horrible feelings of inadequacy will be lessened. We are all in this together, never be afraid to reach out for support from family, a friend, or if necessary, a doctor. It is not a sign of weakness, but the greatest strength.

Being a mother is learning about strengths you didn’t know you had, and dealing
with fears you didn’t know existed.  ~Linda Wooten~

Many blessings to you and yours…..Kim ❤