I am by no means a mom expert. Heck, I’ve only been a mom for four and a half years. But I do think I have learned a lot in that time–Motherhood sure has a way of teaching you lessons fast! So today, I wanted to share a few of the motherhood lessons I’ve learned to focus on, and some of the unimportant stuff that I know longer give a hoot about.
WHAT TO FOCUS ON
1.) What you feed your baby and kids matters.
If my kids eat crap, they act like crap. If they eat a crazy sugar-loaded treat, I know that we will have an epic meltdown in an hour.
What goes into their bodies is so important. Think how you feel after eating poorly–sugar high followed by a sugar slump. You know why you feel that way; but, kids don’t.
I know that like clockwork, my kids will melt down by 5:30 if they haven’t eaten something in the last hour. Some people call it the “Witching Hour” I call it Nuclear Meltdown. Oftentimes, I will try to cut up a pepper for them to get some food into them fast, so I can concentrate on dinner; but, when our days are chaotic, or when we are out and about, I know I can always give them one of these.
The kids will be satiated and nourished, feel like they are getting a “treat.” And I am happy because I know exactly what is in Happy Baby Clearly Crafted™ pouches: high quality organic ingredients, and it’s convenient! With their transparent philosophy (and their transparent packaging) I can see exactly what is in the food I am giving my kids, and that makes me feel better!
2.) Your happiness is just as important as the baby’s and your kids’.
Happy wife, happy life. Well, the same should be said about moms. And believe me, I am far from perfect. I still sometimes prioritize unimportant stuff and fail to spend meaningful time with my kids. I am guilty of this more than I would like to admit.
When I had B, I made everything by scratch. I insisted on doing everything. Then when I had Jack, things had to change. I couldn’t be everywhere all the time. I couldn’t do everything. Nobody can. So I learned to prioritize the important stuff–being with the kids, and caring less about the unimportant stuff (how clean how floors are, whether or not their rooms are picked up.)
With Jack, and now with Baby 3, I scrapped cooking everything from scratch. With B, I felt like there were no good alternatives for clean, transparent packaged fruit and veggie purees that I was comfortable feeding her. Well, four years later, I feel very comfortable giving my children Happy Baby Clearly Crafted™ pouches pouches because the company is all about transparency!
3.) Stop caring so much
Nobody is judging you as much as you think they are. Heck, most moms are too busy minding their own kids to even notice you and your’s. My kids regularly go to school in mismatched socks, and I don’t care. I drop them off most days in yoga pants, a messy bun, no makeup, and a men’s coat (I no longer fit in any of my own!). I don’t care. Some of the outfits that B picks out to wear challenge even the most intense pattern mixers. I don’t care. She thinks she looks wonderful, and as long as it is seasonally appropriate, that’s all that’s important! And our nursery never looks as good as it does in pictures!
4.) Don’t doubt yourself
Before I had kids, I was a nanny for several years post-college. Even though I was with kids all day, I never really felt comfortable just taking kids’ temperatures with just my hand. Well, most of the time my kids are sick now, I don’t even pull out the thermometer. I know when they are sick, I know when they have a fever, and I know pretty much how high their fever is. 105 degree fever feels a whole lot different than 104, 103, 102, or 101!
They say mom’s just know when their kids are sick, and it couldn’t be more true. Trust your gut. You know your kid better than anyone else. You know when something is not right. Many times, I will find the kids acting oddly (exhibiting poorer behavior than usual) right before they come down with something. And I always tell my husband, I bet you B is getting sick–she just doesn’t seem right. Well, most of the time, I am right and that same night she will be up with a fever.
5.) Speak up for yourself and your kids–don’t feel bad about demanding the best
I used to care a whole lot more about what people thought of me. I was self-conscious of breastfeeding in public, I wanted everyone to like me, and I tried to follow the rules to a “tee.” Well, none of that matters when your kids are sick.
This past spring, after several horrible experiences with our doctor’s office, I pulled the plug and found a new doctor. I was polite, rational, and reasonable; but, I was a mama bear and was not going to put up with abysmal service at the risk of my children’s health. Thankfully, we found a new practice which has been going well. We will see in time, if it is up to my standards; but, I know now that I am not crazy. After complaining to several of my friends about it, I put a post on Facebook asking for recommendations for a new practice. And I found out that so many families had struggled like mine with incompetent service from our old practice.
Mama’s trust your gut, and don’t back down.
(me before Jack–here’s to hoping I get that body confidence back to match my mom confidence post Baby #3)
Like I said, I am by no means a mom expert; but, I know I am a better one now than I was when I was a new mom–and I am happier. My advice to new moms–focus on the important stuff, and ignore the rest! Save time slaving over your kitchen stove and save $1 when you grab three Clearly Crafted™ pouches at Walmart! #ThisIsHappy
Linking up with Friday Fav’s with April!