The other day I was having a hard time with my kiddos. My oldest missed her nap and she gets weird when she hasn’t slept. She gets wild eyed and does things she wouldn’t normally do like dump an entire package of animal crackers (I mistakenly left out) into her dusty chalkboard ledge and revert to odd animal noises instead of words when I ask her about it. Yeah, that kind of weird.
When things are tough, I can’t call and complain to my husband because he can’t have his phone at work. So I called another person in my life that will listen to my rant and oftentimes give a meaningful or helpful bit, my mom. After I “blessed” her with an earful of frustrations about kids not napping and a laundry list of things I dislike doing, she blessed me with a response, “Karissa, aside from nap time, what part of the day do you look forward to?”
I was silent. This question had me stumped. Seriously stumped. It shook me to the core. I quickly got off the phone with her and thought about it.
Why do I complain so much about my duties as a mom? Why did I decide to stay home with them if I can’t find one part I look forward to? Do people really enjoy the piles of laundry and dishes and making meals while the kids whine and cry at their feet? Seriously? What is there to enjoy?
And then it hit me. I need a paradigm shift. I need to reframe my thinking not just in a big way, but in the little things too.
What do I love about caring for my littles? I love seeing my babes eyes light up when I pull down the crayons or the giant smile they get when they see we are having pizza for dinner. I love when I randomly ask my 15 month old to do things and he surprises me by understanding. Or when my toddler draws me a picture and proudly declares it a “spider for mama” as I cringe inside. I love how they explode in giddy dance and shout when they hear the words bathtime. Such a celebration for something I view as a “task.”
I think sometimes we just need a reminder. Something that helps us look at things the way we used to. When life becomes stale, create a spark within to keep it fresh. Find something to look forward to, reframe the mundane. So today, I look forward to cuddling on the couch and reading with my babes before bedtime. And then I look forward to bedtime.
How about you, Mama?