Homeschool mama self-care means we identify when we don’t feel happy.Teresa Wiedrick
Once upon a time, I had been rudely awakened by my alarm. Seven o’clock. On the dot.
I intended to wake at that time the night before. Yet, I would have gladly ignored the alarm for another half hour to finish my dream.
When I descended to the main level, I felt draggy and achy. Two kids said they were achy and sick to their stomachs.
This was going to be an unpleasant start to our homeschool day.
I make my coffee: too much water, not enough coffee grounds. The shot of caffeine that normally energized me was not enough. I might need six mugs.
There’s an undeniable reality about homeschool parenting: if you’re happy, sad, mad or glad, you’ll see reflected in your kids.
I’m not suggesting they are a full mirror image of ourselves. They have their separate personalities, energies, and approaches, but I’ve learned that if I’m not feeling great, they will feed on my energy. If I’m chipper, they feed on my energy too.
Kinda like a mama bird feeding her baby birds. Though I’m not feeding them melancholic pills right before my period. And I’m not feeding them amphetamines when I’m happy.
Drat! If only that weren’t so. We could live in our bubbles of irritation when it suited us and react any old way. We could brood because something didn’t turn out the way we wanted. We could eat our chocolate almonds and Lays potato chips in bed and watch Netflix on our iPod all day when we weren’t feeling good.
The osmosis of our feelings can make our days even more challenging. So what to do?
We need to acknowledge our emotions. If we deny our emotions, we won’t be able to address the underlying needs of those uncomfortable emotions.
The consequences will return to us in stilted, dissatisfying connections or destructive engagements with others.
There’s just no way around those unhappy, uncomfortable feelings. We must go through the muck to get out of the muck. Sometimes we need to challenge the thoughts behind our emotions.
Having said that, we are responsible for containing our emotions.
See Dick run. Jane runs too. See Dick smile. Jane smiles too. See Dick lose his top. Jane loses her top too.
Just because we have a feeling doesn’t mean we let to react in any way that is instinctive. (We all know that we have base instincts that aren’t always helpful.)
Is it true that the rest of my day will be miserable? It sure will be if I assume it will be.
If I assume I will have a decent day, though possibly a slower day, could it be?
So, though the coffee beside me is now diluted AND cool. Even though the piercing pain behind my right ear hasn’t been resolved yet. Even though two kids aren’t eager to do anything but laze on the sofa, I will walk out this door, accept the energy of my heart, be mindful of their energy, and accept the day as it is.
The days will get brighter, they always do.
Just as the clouds of the sky pass through the sky, the energy of this day shall pass too.
Now, I can choose to have a new start to my day, and my espresso machine will have a new start, too.
Get more encouragement in the book: Homeschool Mama Self-Care: Nurturing the Nurturer
Call to Adventure by Kevin MacLeod