Happiness Project: Motherhood May

It’s a new month, which means a new topic for May, and this month its parenting. Anyone with children knows that parenting is a full-time, 24/7 job, and as a stay at home mom, this is even more true because parenting is my only job. When my husband and I decided I would stay home with our girls while they are young, this became my sole job. And just like any job, its time for an evaluation and to look for areas of improvement. When I was pregnant I read baby books, and thought about all the ways I wanted to parent; And then I had kids and 90% of everything I thought I would do as a parent went out the window. May seems like the perfect time to take an appraisal of what I am doing as a parent that works and doesn’t work, and focus on being the type of parent I hoped I would be.

There’s that saying we have all heard, that “the days are long, but the years are short,” and this couldn’t be more true when parenting young kiddos. There are some days that feel like they just frustratingly drag on forever, and other days are blissful and fly right by. Reading about the The 5 Love Languages and the importance of quality time made me examine the time I spend with my girls. I generally spend every waking our with them, so quantity of time is not and issue; but how much of that time is quality time? So my first area of focus for this month is to focus on the quality of time I spend with them; to focus on being truly present and not just rushing to get through the day.

My second area of focus is to focus on teaching them something new throughout the month. For my youngest, this will be potty training, which I am dreading and have been procrastinating. The past few weeks she has been exhibiting signs of being ready, and I have been begrudgingly avoiding this. I’m sure there will be a lot of tears shed during this process, and they won’t be from her. I also want to work with the girls on just general educational development. We recently busted out our old flashcards and the girls loved it, and I loved watching them get excited about learning. This also means I’m going to work on cutting down on their screen time. They generally aren’t allowed to sit and play on our phones, and they don’t have tablets, but popping them in front of the TV is an easy way to occupy them, so I can accomplish tasks of my own. My goal is to cut their TV time, and find different activities to occupy their time, which still allowing me to accomplish what I need to during the day.

The last area of focus is one that I generally struggle with; meals. My husband and I generally eat pretty healthy, and our kids are the exact opposite. I find myself vacillating between trying to pick my battles and let them eat all the pizza bagels their hearts and stomachs desire, and being wildly frustrated with terrible eating habits that I have played a major role in developing. What my kiddos eat and don’t eat is a constant area of irrational guilt and mental strife. This month I will be focusing on finding ways to get our entire family eating healthy and developing healthier habits. I have some ideas of how to make this transition, but if you have any ideas I’d love to hear them!

Mother’s Day is right around the corner, and it’s the perfect time to focus my thoughts and energy on being a better mother. Here we go!

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