8 things I need to stop doing as a mother

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Motherhood gives you loads of time to think and not a whole lot of time to ‘do’.  So a ‘things I need to stop doing as a mother’ list works quite well.  Are any of these on your list as well?  Or any I need to add?

 

1. Stop organising everyone and everything.

When I left Eamon as a baby I used to organise everything down to a T. Andrew was left with a list of (verbal) instructions (it took great restraint not to write them down), everything laid out ready to go. Not only did this make me feel stressed but it was no doubt infuriating for him as well (he did his best to humour me though- good man). We need to let go a little. Yes, men are typically not the best organisers but they are resourceful. If they fail to organise what they need, they’ll sort it out. Not your stress. Let it go.

 

2. Stop feeling guilty about everything.

Feeling guilty for not breastfeeding, bottle feeding, cloth diapering, going back to work, staying at home, using a babysitter, not using a baby sitter, tummy sleeping, side sleeping, back sleeping, dummy using. I could go on forever. We all do what we can with what we have and the only thing guilt does is make you feel shitty. And I think your kids really would just prefer you were happy than being cranky because some perceived fail on your part. (And as a side note, I’m yet to come across a man who feeling guilty about his parenting… why is that?!)

 

3. Stop the crusade.

As per the above choices- it’s great that you made them and made them proudly without guilt. But maybe you don’t need to tell the whole world or go on a crusade to knock out the other options. Just because other options exist does not mean you have to take offence when other people disagree with you.  Remember that your story is not the only one and you can’t hear the others if you are shouting all the time.

 

4. Stop eating the left overs.
Crusts, the last of the porridge, the last bite of their dinner.  Just don’t. You deserve better. Make something fresh and eat it hot. Go on, it will make you feel better.

 

5. Stop looking for answers elsewhere.

I used to read everything I could on getting children to sleep and all it helped me do is lose precious hours I could have used… SLEEPING! You are the only expert on your child, look to them, not books.

 

6. Stop trying to figure them out.

Children are completely unfigure-outable (yes it’s totally a word). Occasionally they let you feel like you’ve got them worked out so you don’t sell them to the circus, but you are pretty much guaranteed they will change the rules the very next day just to keep you on your toes.

 

7. Stop thinking so damn much.

I wonder sometimes why by the end of the day I am so exhausted. It’s usually because even though I may have actually achieved very little – my mind was going a mile a minute all day. Thinking about things I want to do, have to do, will do, have already done and always mentally checking off my own to do list. I never had any ‘space’ to just relax. Yoga and meditation are my fix for this but even just listening to your favourite music and literally ‘tuning out’ will help.

 

8. Stop thinking you need to be ‘doing’ all the time.

Kids don’t care about the house being clean or that you haven’t changed the sheets in weeks. Eamon often whines ‘nooooo I want the house Dirrrtyyy’ when I insist on sweeping instead of playing. In fact I’ve put a total ban on chores during Rory’s nap time- those minutes are precious! And whilst I’m still busy doing my own stuff during nap time, every couple of days I try to catch an hour of doing nothing. Even if it’s just cloud watching whilst Eamon jumps on the trampoline and Rory eats dirt, it’s amazing how good doing nothing can make you feel.

 

So that’s my list. I’d love to know what’s on yours.

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