Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Naples, FL
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First off, big hug!
One thing that helps me in the moments that are challenging is to focus on compassion. I imagine making a ball of compassion that is bright white at the center of my chest, and I let it grow from the size of a baseball to a bright mass that reaches over my head. I remind myself the first I must have compassion for myself and acknowledge that it's hard in that moment (sometimes even out loud to myself). Being compassionate to myself is challenging, but I find when I can make space for it my feelings of not being "good enough" or patient, or just like my mother, get shoved where they should be... on the back burner. It's then easier to have compassion for my LO in the moments where she might be annoying me.
Could you start a Saturday morning cuddle tradition? Play music you like (something relaxing) and have everyone in PJ's, and pillows and cuddle for a little while after just waking. Sometimes the physical affection can help with encouraging more patience, stamina for challenging behaviors and a good family bond.
I might suggest that you start a gratitude journal as a trial for two months. In the evenings try writing five things every day that you were grateful for with your kids. A special moment, a time you acted as you wanted, a peaceful nighttime story. Appreciating your children is a good first step to enjoying them. And after two months you can reflect back at the things you've written and note if there are any patterns. Do you notice you really seem to be having nice dinners together? Or looking forward to special time in the mornings? Find the things you like about mothering and expand them.
It's hard to get out of a negativity rut, when you're working so hard to keep your kids together and play. I know many people recommend the book Playful Parenting for ideas of how to bring more playfulness into their day. Please be kind to yourself, sometimes mothering is difficult.
I can be great for awhile and then stress comes into play or I'm super tired, etc. and I revert back to those aweful, aweful behaviors that are ingrained from my childhood.
Mom of one child (2008), wife of one husband, tender of dogs, cats and chickens. Household interests: ocean life (kid), bitcoins (husband), simplifying (me).