The Overwhelm of Motherhood
What do you do when you’re in the conundrum of wanting to run away?
Whether we like to admit it, or not, we all have those days. Those days hit hard where we want to run away, where we don’t want the responsibility of being a Mum and all that it entails – the mental load is HUGE. Some of us are full-time stay at home Mums, some of us are working Mums doing the juggle – either way – some days… suck! And it’s all too much!
We smell freedom, we see our husband leave BY HIMSELF in his car as he goes to FREEDOM aka getting paid for the work he does. We see others driving past our house as they go to work too… no doubt to their dream job, getting paid the big bucks for just following their dreams without having to ever do anything they don’t want to do — ahhh the dream. OR you’re the mum who has to head to work herself, envying the stay at home Mum and the frustration of knowing as soon as you hit the front door there are demands on you to slip straight back into Mum roll, dinner and bedtime routine… wake up and do it all over again. Do we ever get a break?
The grass has to be greener, right? Perspective is important.
I have been a stay at home Mum for the last 7+ years, working from home around my kids. The eldest 2 are in school now and the younger 2 full time at home with me. And most of the time, I love it. Then it creeps up… it’s kind of like the laundry when you’re feeling cocky and think, ‘I don’t have to do a load every day. Ha. Ha. Ha! those cracks start to show and running away seems like the best solution. Get your Forrest Gump on.
But, alas, apparently running away and leaving small kids unattended is kind of frowned upon… and they kind of need us so I’ve come up with the next best thing… and to be honest sometimes it’s boring and internally (sometimes externally) I chuck the ‘I don’t want to’ fit but the mind exercises I do below work! If I stay in the running away headspace, it doesn’t serve me, the kids will feed off it and be feral and we will have a crappy day – a day wasted that could have been wonderful. So let’s have more wonderful days!
So without further ado…
8 things that help me kick butt – cos who has time for long blogs!
- I check to see what is triggering it. What did I eat the night before – did I binge on chocolate? How much fruit and veg did I have? Have I eaten today? – If so, what? The older I get I’m seeing how easily I get frustrated, anxious and irritable if I haven’t looked after my nutritional side of things… and I know coffee has antioxidants in it… but that isn’t classified as eating (if only!) If this is the answer, I will make a smoothie, take my supplements and drink a decent glass of water. If I track my mood, I know it changes drastically – and I become a fun mum again.
- If it isn’t food that’s triggering it, it is usually down to overwhelm – what is overwhelming me and why? I ask myself ‘can I solve this problem?’, if the answer is yes, what can I put in place now to fix it. If not, I choose to let it go and I literally say, “God, take it away!!”. I instantly feel the weight lift. Our words are powerful – how is something serving me in a positive way if it’s stealing my peace, and I literally cannot do anything to change it? Other questions I like to ask myself is ‘does it really matter?’, ‘will me stressing about it change the outcome?’
- If it’s none of those things, I try and decompress in the shower – all the thoughts. I then speak out loud – however many times it takes for me to believe it – either a list of things to make the situation better or some positive ‘I AM’ statements to help me kick butt. I imagine hopping out of the shower like hopping out of a portal of crap and stepping into ‘IT’S TIME TO KICK BUTT!’
- I ask each of my kids to come to me and let me hug them for at least 20 seconds (science shows this releases oxytocin and I’m all for more of that). This usually resets me to see what actually really matters.
- I list 5 things I’m grateful for, and if the kids are being feral I get them to be involved too and we do it together. This not only changes my headspace, but theirs as well.
- I get off my phone! Stop scrolling slickstergram and comparing myself, and my mothering, to all the other glamorous mothers on there who don’t have a hair out of place. I get off my tracksuit covered bum and be present – whether it’s doing the laundry or reading a book to the kids – the phone is far away, in another room on silent and I’m present. It’s amazing what we can get done in that time.
- Change my surroundings. I go outside. Put my feet on the grass, close my eyes (if safe to do so cos kids) and listen to what else I can hear above the noise of the children bickering. At the moment the common sounds for me are cars, birds and a rock breaker at a new housing development near me. This makes me think how grateful I am to be home with my kids and doing mum life instead of sitting in a machine all day breaking rocks while my brain gets to listen to thump, thump, thump, thump over and over again. (yuk!) Perspective, right? ????
- AND if all else fails… I throw all plans out the window, remind myself there’s always tomorrow, sit on the couch and have another cuppa – it’s really difficult not making this my first plan.
You got this Mumma! What do you do to ease your overwhelm?
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