Advice Column, Parenting

How to stay sane through your child’s early years

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By René Yeoman, Assistant Teacher at Trinityhouse Pre-Primary Randpark Ridge

We’ve all heard the saying, “Being a Mom is one of the hardest jobs in the world!” Most Moms’ will nod their heads with a little smirk; I smile because being a Mom is hard, as well as rewarding. I have never second guessed myself so much, as I have since becoming a mom. Remembering those first few months when you feel so alone with this tiny person and you are left to figure it out; so frightening and so amazing at the same time! Looking into your child’s eyes and knowing you would do anything for this little person.

Then these little angels start to grow, and start walking, and talking and it’s magical and exciting and also completely draining and not what you thought at all. I mean there are days when I think if someone could see what is happening they would run away or not recognise me at all! Let’s be real, no person alive does not lose their temper now and again. These little humans created in our bodies, know exactly what buttons to push, to get the best and worst from us. But how do we as parents stay sane when we love our children so much? It’s a good question which I decided to investigate seriously to help myself, especially in this over stressed world we live in; here are some tips I found which I hope will help you as much as it has helped me!

  • Go to Church! Pray! Did you know you can pray anytime of the day in any situation? Good soul food talking to God!
  • Spend quality time with your children, as a family. Such as doing a “Park run” together on the weekend; take the dogs, have fun!
  • Go out! Movies, dinner, ice skating, the zoo just to name a few… As a family!
  • Spend quality time as partners, have a date! Setting a regular date night together; maybe once a month, without the kids and talking about things that interest you.
  • Let your kids spend lots of valuable time with their Grandparents, it gives you as parents some free time and it’s extremely rewarding for your children. They learn things from their Grandparents that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.
  • Do things from your youth; go out and dance. Be young and carefree.
  • Have coffee with your best friend and talk.
  • Laugh as much as possible especially at yourself! Life is short.
  • Find something you are passionate about and follow your dream.
  • Spend quality time with your current pets, or get a pet. 
  • Dance and sing to yourself; be your crazy inner self.
  • Exercise! Not my favourite word, but I found a sneaky cheat. A wonderful person was willing to come to my house and spend her time with me and teach me Pilates. Changed my life!
  • Talk to people you work with, get to know them. I have realised many of my struggles are shared by colleagues and listening to them helps me work through my own frustrations.
  • Talk to your partner, they are still your best friend! Time to reconnect!
  • Go on holiday! Try somewhere new and go on an adventure.
  • No phones at the dinner table!
  • Always talk to your children honestly and trust them, they will surprise you.
  • Give yourself a break and breathe! 
  • Know you are a good parent and you are doing the best you can!

Remember parenting is not meant to be easy, we are moulding human beings. The fact that we worry shows that we are brilliant parents and we just need to have faith and trust God’s amazing plan.

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