4. Become Perseverant
Motherhood isn’t a sprint; it’s a marathon. We can be tempted to give up too easily when something doesn’t work the first couple of times. Remember you are in it for the long haul. Take time away from your kids, such as going on a women’s retreat over the weekend, planning a getaway with your husband once a year, or attending a mom’s group or a Bible study without your children. After time away, you’ll return a more energized, focused mom who can outlast that toddler or teen.
5. Become Yes-Filled
Look for the yeses in motherhood. Realize that these ideas may seem a little counterintuitive, like saying yes to ignoring the Joneses, yes to being a family that serves, and yes to being the fun house. You can also say yes to your hobbies. (I hope that mom I met in that mommy café is playing volleyball again by now.) Instead of thinking I can’t do that because I’m a mom, think of the many great things you still can do as a mom.
When my youngest child, Lucy, was four, she watched a blackbird sitting on our fence. Moments later, it flew away. She said as wistfully as a preschooler could, “Usually when they get on the fence, they are getting ready to fly away.” A lump formed in my throat, and I hurried to write down those words so I wouldn’t forget them.
Someday my three children will leave the nest. They’ll sit on the fence and fly away. When that day comes, I want to look back and say, “Wow, I really enjoyed being a mom while they were home.” I want my kids to have memories of a happy mom rather than a stressed-out driver or order taker. I think that’s what you want too. As you focus on these five ways to bring back your mom joy, your smile will be brighter—and so will your children’s.
Arlene Pellicane is a speaker and author of 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Mom (August 2015) and Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World (co-authored with Dr. Gary Chapman). She lives in Southern California with her husband James and their three children. Visit ArlenePellicane.com for free resources including her monthly Happy Home podcast.