Here is something new I tried today: I created an intentional time period where I did not stop what I was doing to attend to the kid’s needs. Now, that may not be novel to some of you who have way better boundaries than I do, but for me, I am just over the feeling of “I want some quiet time before 8pm to get my own s%*t done.” So after lunch, I told my kids that I was going to make a list of things that I was going to do without stopping and when I was finished we could watch a movie.
Carrot + stick approach. But hey, baby steps.
It took them bit to understand that I was serious, but as I denied their requests for help with getting costumes on, fixing toys, coloring etc, they switched to asking if I was finished with my tasks yet. Hello pressure cooker feeling but I pressed on. It took a solid 90 minutes, but I got some of my own things done and that felt spectacular! I had to wade through some mom guilt about not focusing on them and I am still unsure where I land on it all. I know it is good for me and them to have some boundaries, AND I am also keenly ware of how fast time is flying by, and that some day sooner than I am ready, the interest in me playing with them will dwindle, and their need for me will change in a way that I will perhaps grieve over. So, it was, and is, a challenge for me to focus on me while I am with them.
Anyone else have competing voices in their head about things, parenting or other? How do you manage the voices? What are your criteria for which one to listen to, and when?
I don’t know that there is a right or wrong approach, but I am convinced there are different ones than I have taken. I am open to learning from you and I invite you to share the epic highs and lows of the voices in your head…….but let’s keep it PG-13 just in case my kids read it someday. Thanks in advance!