Being a parent can be a slog. I am not going to lie there are times when I find mothering a monotony. Now do not get me wrong, I adore my children and have come to know that I was born to be a parent, but heck there have been days and even months when I have wanted to tear my hair out over thinking about cooking yet another meal or wiping another bottom (thankfully baby days and toddler days are long gone).
Kids thrive on routine, well at least mine do. They like to know what we are having for dinner, what time is lunch and Maxi likes to be in charge of making sure the timetable is strictly adhered to (a sergeant major in the making that one)!
So how do we make sure we escape the monotony of motherhood?
Tips for getting through the monotony of parenting
For me it is all about keeping “mainly” to the routine, but jazzing it up a bit. I do this by making the ordinary extraordinary.
- Watching a film becomes movie night. We have popcorn in homemade popcorn boxes and sit under the blanket all snuggled up.
- Stop rushing. Now this might just be me, but when I rush to do the things I SHOULD be doing I become grumpy, instead the washing can wait, whilst that tickle is so essential!
- Mix it up a bit. We are not lovers of Monday mornings in The Mad House. I get sad that the boys are going to school and that the weekend is over, but instead of moping, we celebrate the start of the week with a special family breakfast.
- We pretty much eat every meal at the dining room or kitchen table, so there is nothing wrong with eating homemade pizza on our knees in the sitting room. I remember fondly the Sunday evening tea at home growing up salad sandwiches whilst watching Buck Rogers.
- Take time to smell the flowers. How often do you just sit and watch the stars? I want to sit and teach the kids their constellations and if there is a clear night, then why not let the go to bed ten minutes later.
- End each day with three good things. This is a throwback to my PND, one of my CBT exercises was to find three good things to end each day with. I do this with the boys each evening and still end my night finding the small joys.
- Choose Joy. By this I mean make the choice to accept the monotony, but also make sure that you look for and acknowledge that the small things make a big difference. Little things make a big difference. A great example of this is our Sodastream, by adding bubbles to plain water it brings happiness to my kids. It is a small thing that makes the kids happy.
- Find something that keeps you engaged. I try and keep the brain muscles engaged, learning and blogging does this for me. Finding small snippets of time to do things that I enjoy.
- Be spontaneous. Yes we have a routine, but there is always wiggle room to do something spontaneous.
- If all else fails, get outside. Set the reset button by getting some fresh air for you and the kids.
I am going to admit that I found the baby and toddler days hard work. The repetitive nature of mothering a small person often drove me insane. I am lucky that my best friend also has kids and we would commiserate each other and remind each other that things were often “just a phase”.
She taught me to give myself a break and set the same rules for myself as I would a friend, oh and if all else fails then there is nothing wrong in locking yourself in the loo for 5 minutes so you actually get to drink a hot cup of tea!
How do you take the monotony out of parenting?