Always on the go? Babies crying, toddlers whining, not to mention never a moment alone. As a mother or father of little ones, you can easily become overwhelmed and over-stressed.
The moment your little one is born you may have been filled with an immense love and joy. You may have vowed to do whatever was necessary to make your child happy and secure.
Weeks or months (sometimes even days) later you may re-think that vow. You’re doing everything you can think of, but the baby doesn’t stop crying, suffers from colic, or refuses to sleep. Your life looks nothing like your dreams or expectations of being a parent. You catch yourself feeling angry and stressed.
If you have felt this way or are experiencing this right now, know this:
You are NOT alone.
Everybody feels this way at one time or another. (Some are just better at hiding it than others!) Parenting is one of the hardest jobs (if not the hardest job) you will ever be called to do. Here are a few ideas that have often helped moms and dads like you.
- Join a support group. There are several moms’ groups in the area where you can connect with other moms as well as receive some helpful information on parenting. Most mom groups try to create an environment that is relaxing as well as fun so you can be ready to be mom again when it is done. Here in Redwood Falls, there is a Mom Time group that meets twice a month at the Redwood Alliance Church. For more information, you can check them out on Facebook. There are also MOPS groups in Marshall, Willmar, and New Ulm. To find out more about them, go to www.mops.org and look up MOPS group nearest you.
- Take some time for yourself. Find something that you enjoy doing whether that is reading a book, taking a walk through the park, taking classes at your local community center, or even just taking a coffee break at your local coffee shop. Just an hour or two to yourself can give you what you need to relax, refocus, and even be a better parent. Your child, after spending a bit of refreshing time with a kind and trustworthy adult, may be extra happy to see you when you return.
- Create a routine with your family. A routine will help you create consistency and in turn will help your child feel more secure. Security helps children feel calmer. Starting routines with your children may seem overwhelming. But if you follow the natural cues of your child, you may just be able to develop a routine that works for all of you. Don’t let your routine become too rigid, however, or you may just stress yourself and your child more.
Finally, just remember to love your child. In the end, that is what your child needs most. Take some time to snuggle, play with, and/or read a book with your child every day. That is time you will cherish always.
And the smile on your child’s face will help those stressful feelings melt away.
At Choices Pregnancy Center, we know how challenging parenting can be.
Stop struggling alone.
Come in and visit with our trained parenting coaches.
Voice your concerns, and we’ll offer you resources that can give you
the ideas, encouragement, and strength you need
to be the kind of loving parent you want to be.