You did it! You rocked childbirth and motherhood came at you in full force.
You dreamed and prayed. Waited. Suffered those nasty underbelly cramps as you shimmied your way through Zumba eight months pregnant.
You and your husband even put together the crib a whole week before your due date. Who cares if one of the bolts is on backwards and you can’t remove it, short of a construction miracle? The eco-friendly, allergen-free, non-gender biased dust-ruffle covers it up anyway.
As far as we’re concerned, you #NailedIt!
In the thick of the mom routine, you're like a pro on autopilot. Nothing surprises you anymore.
Feed. Wash kids. Nap. Potty train. Send to school. Clean house. Do personal work somewhere in between. Love husband. Repeat.
You could do this thing in your sleep. In fact, you are sleeping—standing at the kitchen sink. But somewhere in the chaos of the daily grind, it's easy to lose perspective. Moms try to be everything to everybody. We love hard--so hard that we don’t realize it when we’ve gone off course.
Here are some bad habits we need to kick as moms...
Habit #1. Forgetting that you’re a woman first, and a mom, second.
We know, they’re loud. The kids are the squeakiest wheels in the house...every single day. Your husband might possibly die on his recliner waiting for you to come sit down with him like you promised over an hour ago.
But if I just finish this “one thing” tonight, tomorrow will be easier.
Little Ben needed one more story so he doesn’t end up at the foot of our bed at midnight…
Do you remember signing up for this madness? Nope, but here we are!
At some point in the day, moms need to transition from baby whispers to confident women. It’s not easy, but it’s important! Maybe that means putting the kids to bed on time every night—allowing them to read on their own until they fell asleep. You could also enjoy that one mocktail or glass of wine while cooking dinner. Then take a shower to wash the kid-crusties off before settling down with hubby.
What can you do to remind yourself that you’re a woman first and a mom second? To transition to "wife" at night?
Do whatever works for you. Your spouse will thank you for it.
Habit #2: Doing everything for your kids because it’s faster and easier.
It’s true. Watching your child fold his long-sleeved t-shirt for the third time makes the clock feel like it’s stopped. This time-bending principle also applies to tying shoes, organizing board game pieces, lining crayons up by color, and figuring out which buttons on the remote turn on Fireman Sam for the four-hundredth time.
Unless you’re an angel in disguise, you'll lose patience sometimes—we all do.
It’s so much easier just to GET IT DONE! Because then, it’s done…and we can move on to something better—like pairing up rogue socks or scraping dried blueberries off the kitchen chairs. Before you’re tempted to rush in and save the day, remember just one thing:
We have one goal as “Mom,” and it’s to work ourselves out of the job.
It reminds me of the Montessori saying, “Help me to do it myself...”
…unless you want your kids living with you at the age of thirty (that's 1,560 months for our toddler moms). But hey, we're not judging.
Habit #3: Apologizing for your messy house.
Today’s the day. You label-maker-loving friend is coming over with her kids to play. There’s an apple juice stain on the playroom floor that you haven’t been able to get out. Sequins are still stuck in your daughter’s hair. Legos are scattered haphazardly around the living room and you’re considering cancelling the play date altogether…
The doorbell rings and then comes the word vomit:
Friend’s response: “No worries.” Thinks: You should see the laundry pile in my bedroom.
With the exception of a house filled with toxic sludge, moms are pretty forgiving when it comes to adult interaction.
Ladies, stop apologizing for your house. Just show up.
That’s what we really need from one another anyway—a present friend who can encourage us in this busy stage of mom life.
Do you have any of these mom habits? Make a fellow mom smile by telling us all about it below.
M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy. Earns Crossfit participation trophies. Disaster cook. Enthusiastic wife. #Boymom. Clutches her faith, not her pearls.