17 different women, 36 crazy children, 0 babies in utero
Adventures, Advice and Questions from a group of Mormon women who met in Queens, NY and have now scattered all over the place.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

How do you get through those really bad days?

You know the days I'm talking about. When everything seems to be going wrong. You're in a mood. You're children are in a mood. Nothing is working. I think I need help getting more of a game plan together to handle those "terrible, horrible, no-good, very-bad days".

Baby girl was born only about 5 weeks ago, so of course life is chaos. We have good days and bad days. The thing I am noticing is that I need more of a strategy for the bad ones. In particular I need a sure fire way to gather myself together and recoup. I don't want to snap at my toddler too often or have "that tone" with him because I'm sleep-deprived and fried. I mean, he doesn't really understand that mommy's job just got twice as hard. And I'm not one that deals well with little or no sleep. I don't want to be too hard on myself either because I know I'm doing the best I can right now, and juggling my new load is gonna be a tough transition at times. I just think I could use more of a plan for the times when I'm frazzled and can't think straight.

So what do you do to get through those kinds of days? Say a prayer (or a dozen prayers)? Read a particular scripture maybe? Have a diet coke or other sort of goodie stashed away in the fridge? Chocolate perhaps? Lock yourself in the bathroom and count to ten? Imagine yourself on a deserted island? Whatever it is, share your strategy because I definitely need to have more of a plan so that my kids don't only remember me as their crazy, stressed out mama.


  • 1. You are doing a good job :)

    2. They will not only remember you as tired, stressed out mama.

    3. I have found that the greatest sanity saver when my kids were very young was to get away, ideally each day, ALONE. I had to wait until my husband was home but I found that taking off for an hour or two was such a saver. Sometimes all I did was get a Coke and sit in Barnes and Noble and read magazines or write in my journal. Or have a quick uninterrupted bite at Baja Fresh. Or DRIVE (before gas was outrageous, of course) and blast music. Getting away for just a bit by myself really helped. It still does.

    4. I am a fan of the afternoon Coke. I believe Kage is as well. Go for it.

    5. I am also a fan of something chocolatey in the afternoon. Small and yummy.

    6. Remember...you are doing a really good job :)
    posted by Blogger Chloe at 6/18/2008 10:11:00 PM  

  • i've noticed it's a lot harder to get through my day if I'm trying to get too much done. inevitably they need something when I have just sat down to the computer, or just started the laundry, etc. It's hard to admit that "I will be doing nothing today." But my kids relax more when they don't have to compete with other things for my attention. having to compete with each other is enough! I'm trying to learn to sit and play with them more, or not try to do things that I want to do that are fun (reading, blogging etc) I find i dont enjoy these things anyway cause the kids are always "MOMMY" every 5 sec. I also have to have naps quite often or my tone gets worse and i feel like the day will never end. and usually by the end of the day i am weak at the knees which makes my evenings completely worthless cause i cant focus on what i want to do. so i dont enjoy myself. OH and sending Ronin to school for a few hours each day has REALLY REALLY helped. it will come soon. for now, just hang on. the coke and chocolate thing from Chloe is dead on too.
    you doing good! and it does get easier. must go now, since ronin is yelling "mommy!"
    posted by Blogger Larsen Family at 6/19/2008 06:50:00 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.
    posted by Blogger Zinone at 6/19/2008 08:54:00 AM  

  • Sometimes I hate this blogging stuff! I just wrote and put your sons name and had to delete it cuz I forgot you probably wouldn't want his name out there. GRRR~

    Anyway, I basically said, I am so sorry you are feeling this way. I too know you are doing a good job~
    It may not feel like it but I am sure you are!

    Savor any breaks you get, and try to get them as often as you can. As soon as it is not 110 outside, I will come take DS to the zoo and give you a little time to nap!

    The good news is, I know I went through this, but I don't really remember it... so that may give you hope??

    Hang in there!
    posted by Blogger Zinone at 6/19/2008 08:58:00 AM  

  • Foods;


    I have actually switched to Diet Coke with Lime, but in case of an emergency, a coke, and dyer (is that the word) emergency, Vanilla Coke or Dr. Pepper.

    Cakey Chocolate...cupcakes or black and white cookies.

    Prayers are good too.

    A pillow on the couch and a long dvd on repeat too.

    When you have such little ones.....remember TODAY is not the rest of your life. For some reason we start panicking right? And instead of panicking, just totally veg and take all the pressure off.

    Also, don't be afraid to NOT accomplish what you wanted to, or to say NO to something. Be honest.....I have recently had to say: No, I cannot see you on that day, because I have not had enough sleep, and I am struggling to raise my children and do A, B and C, and you will have to understand that I am not capable of that right now, even though you really want me to do that.

    Be brave, tell the truth, and you will feel so much more balanced and happy at the end of the day.
    posted by Blogger Kage at 6/19/2008 08:58:00 AM  

  • Call a sitter asap! It always take me a few months at least before I am brave enough to leave my babies with a sitter but it is the BEST thing ever for my sanity.

    With my last I hired someone to clean once a week. Next time around (if there is a next time) I am hiring a mother's helper to come over one or two days a week to do whatever I need (babysit, laundry, whatev). Heavenly!

    If money is super tight and these aren't possible then put your kids in their cribs (they will survive), lock yourself in the bathroom, and take the longest/hottest shower possible.

    I also have a 'go-to' list that I use whenever the toddler is driving me nuts; play time in the bathtub with all my kitchen utensils, certain movies, Diego shows online, butcher paper on the wall she can draw on, whatever.

    Good luck!
    posted by Blogger the Rew Crew at 6/19/2008 11:19:00 AM  

  • Oh yes, I forgot - recreational bathing for the toddler! Lifesaver. Teach them to sit and not stand up, give them fun stuff to play with, bubbles and maybe some of that Crayola water color-er stuff - lifesaver. Seriously, we are big fans of recreational bathing around here.

    And I agree with Zinone - my kids were 19 months apart and the first year of #2's life was pretty hellish. And yet...I can't really remember it now? It's faded...

    This too shall pass. In the meantime, Coke, Chocolate, sitters, bathing. Oh, and prayers - that's all you need, baby!
    posted by Blogger Chloe at 6/19/2008 06:31:00 PM  

  • Beth,

    I second everything Kage said. I think it's because we were new mothers at the same time and second mothers at the same time. Those wise words came up in numerous conversations during the hard days.

    Summer is also a perfect time to find a "mother's helper". If you can find a young girl in the neighborhood or the ward who enjoys kids and doesn't have a full summer schedule, you can pay them a few dollars an hour to come over when you are home and play with the toddler while you clean, deal with the baby, take a break, etc.

    In fact, I just scheduled someone to come over and help me tomorrow so I can clean and get packed for our upcoming trip--something i know I cannot get all done in one day (while keeping my sanity) without a little help). I told her mom I would pay her by the hour and her mom said she would be happy to do it for free because it would be so much fun for her (but i'm still going to pay her).
    posted by Blogger TftCarrie at 6/19/2008 07:24:00 PM  

  • Hey Ladies - Thanks for all the tips! One of the best things about being an overwhelmed mom is commiserating with other moms who totally understand. Thanks for that.

    Chloe - I love your last comment. Totally sums everything up. And my fridge is packed with Diet Dr. Pepper and Coke Zero.

    Larsen Fam - I totally agree that I need to simplify, especially on days when I haven't gotten much sleep. And I need to make myself take naps whenever possible. I'm just not much of a nap person by nature.

    Z - I would love a zoo trip anytime!

    Kage - I just said to a friend of mine today that we have to remember "it's not always going to be like this". So true. And I don't want time to go too fast (depending on the day). There are many wonderful things about having a newborn.

    Rew Crew and Carrie - A mother's helper/sitter is a great idea. I know a YW that is trying to save for camp, too, so I should call her and set something up once a week even.

    A little on-line shopping has been helping me as well. :) I'm also trying to be better about saying a prayer, and having a sense of humor about this crazy time. And thankfully I have a DH who is willing to make a cup of tea in the evening and rub my shoulders. Thank goodness.
    posted by Blogger beth at 6/19/2008 09:41:00 PM  

  • Yes - thank goodness for an understanding husband who is willing to help you.
    People have given are a lot of good tips. i would always call someone. I don't have two yet, but I bet once in a while if you stick your toddler in the bath you can probably just hold your newborn and talk to a family member or good friend and sometimes the crazy things making you insane actually end up making you laugh. i am a big fan of actually speaking to someone or having a friend come over with some jamba juice, or a Dr. Pepper, or treats, and then just vegging out together is good too.
    Good luck! You seem like a wonderful and loving mother!
    posted by Blogger Melissa at 6/19/2008 10:25:00 PM  

  • Schedule many GNO's! At least once a month, we have 2 scheduled a month with the mom's at church. We meet at a certain time and place, and whoever can comes, does. We always have at least 6 or 7 show up. A MUCH looked forward to time with friends.

    Also, those who stay home with little ones (mine is 9) often have play dates. There are 5, and for 2 hours each day they meet at someone's house. So Kathy Monday's, Kim Tuesday's, etc, etc, etc.

    That way, should you be going wonkers, you can zone out with friends! :)
    posted by Blogger Melzie at 6/21/2008 01:40:00 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home