Don’t Let a Rough Morning Define Your Day {or Who You Are}

You know what it’s like. You wake up and wish you could sleep for another hour.  Your kids wake up grumpy and don’t remember your “keep your hands to yourself” rule.  You end up rushing around because someone doesn’t have a clean shirt or can’t find their homework.  Once again you let your kids have it for not laying everything out the night before like you’ve told them to do a hundred million times before. Secretly inside you are kicking yourself for ever trusting them to do it on their own and not checking to make sure everything was done…but you were just so tired {still are}.

A rough morning like this longs to define the rest of your day.  It wants to stretch its tentacles into noon time when lunch is pressing and you’ve barely started the laundry. It hopes to still be around when the afternoon is over and that nap you so desperately needed {to survive the rest of the day} just didn’t happen.

You give a rough morning power when you let it define your day. You can let a rough morning define who you are and your life. It’s a cycle that can be tough to break and can rule a mom’s heart.

It starts with the inward mental beating that you give yourself for not doing a better job, being more prepared, or having it all together.  The mental beating will continue until you put a stop to it.

The way to stop the madness of letting these things define your day {or who you are} is to realize when you are having these negative thoughts and start to hold them captive. Lock them up and refuse to give into the feelings they bring and the self condemnation that they feed on.

You are a good mom! When you believe that you WILL start to become it. When you believe that you aren’t you won’t be.  Our thoughts are SO powerful.  They can rule our day or our entire life.

When the morning has been rough, and it seems as though you failed, and the thoughts come barging in to tell you you’re no good, take a deep breath, smile and remember that you are learning this mothering thing.  You will have new moments to do it better, to learn what works and what doesn’t. Remind yourself you are a good mom who is diligently working on becoming a better mom all of the time. Then kiss your rough morning goodbye and enjoy the rest of the day!

Do you have days like this? You know I am writing this from my own experience right?! I’ve been there many times. How do you overcome a bad morning?

For the Overwhelmed Mom Who Wants Off of the Crazy Cycle

I often feel like the most overwhelmed mom who desperately wants off of the crazy cycle.  Occasionally I will think about the crazy busy life I live and feel like dropping everything and moving to some remote village in France.  I imagine it would be quiet and serene and life would be simple.  I would walk to the market and buy fresh bread, butter and cheese everyday.  My kids would wake up early and do chores and work hard because, well, that would be the lifestyle. I would spend my time, while they are at school, gardening and canning and preparing meals.  I would also make time for decorating our home. We would laugh together loud and live joy filled lives.  It would be simple and it would be a beautiful life.

Back to reality.

I wake up early ever morning with a to do list that is already a mile long. We rush to get through breakfast and get 5 kids off to 3 different schools. My days are filled with grocery shopping at different stores to find the best deals, cleaning a house that has toys scattered in every room, meal planning, running all over the place to find the supplies my kids teachers just asked for that they need tomorrow, paying bills, blogging here and there, taking kids to soccer and volleyball practice and games across town, all with my youngest in tow who doesn’t seem to care for any of it…

And the thought creeps in that I hate this busy life.  I really dread it every day.  There’s little joy in the doing and the details seem draining.

One day, while stopping at the 2nd store on my list and agonizing that there are 3 more to go, I had the thought: What if I could live the simple and beautiful life I long for?  What if being grateful and looking for beauty are the keys? What if stopping to survey the beauty and uniqueness of the fresh produce, beautiful flowers and wondering at the blue sky while I walk back to the car were all I really needed to make my life more beautiful and simple?

Summertime: Fresh Strawberries #1

What if I chose the things I love over the things I think I need?  What if I made my shopping excursions about what was available from the farmers market and had the guts to throw something together that night with my finds instead of meal planning boring casseroles & crockpot meals every single day?

What if I made cooking a more enjoyable by thinking of it as art by living in the moment?  What if I treasured the time I spent doing homework with my kids because it was time I actually had with them to invest in who they will become.  What if our car rides to and fro became beautiful because our conversations turned deep as the music was turned down?

We glorify a busy life now days.  We glorify a mom who “does it all.”  Especially if she still looks good and doesn’t seem tired.  But it is running us ragged. We are overwhelmed and listening to voices that keep us in this crazy cycle of being at whits end with no hope of ever not being there {with the exception of when it has all passed us by and our kids are raising their own kids and following in our example of crazy busy lives}.

I wonder at a life with margin; extra space that allows for beauty. It seems thrilling and hopeful and unachievable at the same time.

But it is possible.  It is possible in the laying down of caring about what anyone else thinks of you {and this is really the key}.  It is possible in becoming a hunter for true beauty and a purger of clutter {of things and appointments and tangents}.  It is possible in going after the great things and letting the good things just pass you by.

My calling as a mom is shifting.  I used to feel called to just survive but now I feel called to thrive.  I’m just beginning to figure out what this means but I am excited because it’s nothing less than a life lived more deeply with much beauty along the journey.

Do you feel like you live on the crazy cycle?  Want to step off with me and discover the path to a more beautiful and fulfilling life?