Monday, June 9, 2014

Mommy Minute:Finding strength

If you're a parent, you  knows what's it like to be EXHAUSTED.  Do you ever feel like your kids need more from you than you're able to give!? You're EMPTY and feel guilty because you can't provide for your kids what they need.  You're trying to balance everything and your gas tank is dry. What do you do?

A few years ago, I was going through an extremely challenging time.  My husband and I had decided to go our separate ways.  I was a stay at home mom with a baby that was 7 months old and a 3 year old.  I needed to figure out how to start supporting myself independently.  The problem was that having been a nanny and social worker before staying home with the kids I wasn't able to find full time work that would cover the cost of daycare for 2 small children.  I decided to watch some other children and take on jobs at night in addition to starting my own business which would eventually be something I could do full time.  While all this is going on my 7 month old was getting chronic ear infection and would be crying and had interrupted sleep patterns because of the discomfort. On top of THAT, my 3 year old needed me....A LOT.  She would wake in the middle of the night with growing pains and she was needy during the day.  I'm not sure if she sensed everything going with her father and I separating but she definitely needed more of mommy than I could handle.  I was exhausted.

As a parent, I'm sure you can understand that a half hour of crying can seem like an ETERNITY.  We've all been there! I remember several times when I would tell her "I have nothing left to give you" while she was crying.  One time, late at night while she was laying in her bed sobbing I remember her saying "You have nothing to give me? You're giving up on me?".

It was that moment that I realized that I needed to change my ways.  Parenting is not a job I can clock out of or take a sick day.  My daughter needed me and I needed to be there for her.  I walked out of the room for about 30 seconds, took some deep breathes and walked back in and told her that everything was going to be o.k.  She was right, I needed to be there for her and not give up.

What helps you during those challenging times when you are exhausted and feel like you're running on empty?

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