I am a good mum, aren’t I?
I think the very fact that you would even ask yourself that suggests that you already are.
As a manager of mine once honed-in on with arrow-like accuracy, I am a perfectionist. To the point where sometimes I expect way too much of myself, life and others and get incredibly anxious about whatever the situation may be.
At the moment, the leading cause of my stress is balancing my life between spending quality time with Maya and working. I kid you not, it has kept me awake til all hours more than once this week.
Now I know I am not alone in being a mum who returned to work early after baby. In the small daycare my mother runs, I see it every day… and in fact, it is more the case than not. The crux of my issue lies in that my baby goes to her dads over the weekend every second weekend and I feel as though I haven’t spent more than an hour with her in a fortnight. It is hard and lately, has began to eat at me to the point where I just can’t shake the feeling something is wrong. But that is a story for another time.
I have a lot of concerns about letting myself stay in a state of perpetual stress. Apart from making you an absolute drag to be around, it does shocking things to your health, immunity and general wellbeing. So here I am, doing something (rational, no I didn’t just quit my job and become a gypsy) about it.
My philosophy is, that stress and anxiety can either beat me or I can beat it. There is only one of two ways. Here’s what I am giving a whirl to keep the stress low and go go go:
1- Control the Controllable
There are things that cannot be changed. For me, it’s that I need to work to earn money to live and that Maya needs to see her father, so I can’t spend every spare second with her. What I can control is how we spend our time. Engaging, connecting and playing. Communicating and reading stories. Cuddling and just being in each other’s company. That is up to me.
It is also up to me to prep meals, outfits and do chores when she is sleeping or away, so I don’t spend her waking time on things like this and it can just be about us hanging out!
It is your time, what you chose to do with it, us up to you.
2- Take Care of Your Health
Now, I had the pleasure of hearing Frank Caruso, founder of Caruso’s Natural Health at a brunch event recently. His philosophy is simple yet rings 1000 truths ‘make time for your health and you will always have enough health for a good time’.
Pre-baby, I was the fittest and healthiest I have ever been. Now, not so much. And I am not looking after myself as well as I could be and I feel it.
In addition to starting a collagen booster for my skin & hair & a multi-vitamin for general supplement, I have also started taking a herb Rhodiola from the Caruso’s Herbal Therapeutics Range. Rhodiola helps relieve nervous tension, stress and mild anxiety. (there are about 3000 places in Aus, check out where to grab yours here).
Moreover, I am going to try and add some weight-based exercise back in to my life when Maya is away…and start a walk daily with and without her. Just so I can keep those endorphins flowing and get me little love in to good habits too.
3- Go to bed on time…and maybe leave the wine for the weekend.
So lately, I have become a two-glass a night girl. I am beginning to feel like that is too dangerously close to high-functioning alcoholism (because let’s face it, I can’t hold a drink like I used to) for my liking. So I am cutting that away and saving it for the weekends and getting my ass to bed on time!
One thing I took away from 7 years at University was that sleep is imperative to functioning well and maintaining even a little sanity. And I have no excuse, May has slept through the night since was tiny!
4- Do the things you need to do.
Without sugar coating anything, I have become flat-out complacent with things I need to do lately. Nothing major, just letting the laundry build up…things like that. I figure, if I just do what I need to do in a reasonable time-frame, I won’t have to spend all week stressing about the Mount Everest of Laundry I have waiting for me on the weekend. Or just get the wee little one to help…either way!
So there you have it. Feel free to join me…or even just join in the conversation. My door is always open x