Anyone who has ever heard this saying knows how true it is! Recently, it occurred to me that as the Mama to F and J, my attitude has a direct and important impact on THEIR happiness.
As MoMs we expect a lot of ourselves, and our days are often consumed with tasks, chores, obligations and expectations. We are under a lot of pressure, and most of us collapse into a heap of “used-up-Mommy” at the end of the day. Some days our kids are lucky we fed them and didn’t lose them at the grocery store! Other times, our homes are flooded with illness (and vomit, and snot!), and our caregiver capacity is stretched to the max. Occasionally, we just have really rotten days, or find out that our house needs a new $roof$. And my personal nemesis, PMS, usually rears its ugly head at the most inopportune times. And yet, my emotional barometer sets the tone for my whole family. That is a big responsibility!
My son and daughter are still pretty darn young. But they are growing up quickly, and they study me like crazy. They watch my expressions, and consider my movements. For example, anyone who has young children knows that if you cheer when they fall, as opposed to gasping in horror, that they are less likely to cry. Why? Because they are picking up on our cues. (If Mommy or Daddy aren’t freaked out about my tumble, then I must be okay, but if they are freaked out then I must REALLY be hurt!!!)
As F and J’s Mom, I am challenged to make the most of our days, especially when the weather, the world or wiping noses is getting to me. This really isn’t a “how to” post, rather, I am writing to remind myself and others, that as moms, we have the power to infuse our homes with laughter, joy and happiness. OR we can be a black and angry cloud that rains down on our family.
Now, I will be the first to admit that I am not super-mom. There are days when I have to hide from the kids or take a bathroom break just to have a few minutes sans-crying, or I will lose my mind. But I know that if I pick up the screaming child and do a little jig and make funny faces I can usually stop their crying. In a way, I guess that does make me a super-powered, super-mom!
My sister-in-law was housebound with my 2 year old niece during a stretch of particularly nasty weather. You know what they did? Built a fort in the dining room and read books with a flashlight! Now that is how you turn crummy circumstances (AKA Pennsylvania weather) into a good memory.
We at “How Do You Do It?” would love to hear how you creative MoMs out there keep family life in perspective, and work at being Happy Mama’s!