Recently, I received an email from one of my readers with a rather interesting question. The question is quite a good one (as we all have these days) and I am more than happy to share it with you all and perhaps give her (and any of you with the same thoughts) a personal answer.
“Hi, I found your blog about a year ago and have been studying it closely since, I am addicted to it! HAHA. I was just wondering how you do it on those days where you have a headache, its hot, your overtired and just can not be bothered. (I find this happens when my husband is home funnily enough!) I need some motivation for these days and would like to know what you do?”
Firstly I want to point out that each and everyone of us are different; some cope with stress more easily than others. Some woman are strong and others need guidance whether from a friend, husband/partner or loved one. Some woman can cope with being alone for long periods of time, where others worry or stress when their husband/partner is not home at a certain time of the day or night.
We are all different and handle situations differently. For example; a child with a bloody knee or blood oozing from some part of their body might make you feel faint and weak at the knees or you may be strong and able to get on with tending to the child without the slightest bit of anxiety what-so-ever.
Or perhaps, the sight of a spider or mouse may send you jumping up and down to the point where you need to stand on a chair (and scream like a girl); yet pulling out a child’s tooth may come with ease (give me a spider, mouse or snake any day) 😛
Getting back to the question; we all have our own way of coping with things. If you have been a follower of my blog for a while, you will know that my hubby works away from home during the week with the occasional trip overseas. I have 7 children which means working around the clock. Their ages range from 13, 11, 10, 8, 7, 5 & 3.
Parenting is not an easy task (if only each were born with a user manual – I am sure we would have all pushed for that extra hour if they each came with their very own personal do’s and don’t’s book), and even the most organised parent can have a breakdown, whether its physical or mental.
In saying that, I would have to admit that I find the ages of my children right now to be the best and easiest time (although I am about to be hit with 4 teenage girls in the house soon). When I had lots of little ones (5 under 5yrs), that was hardest. Wow, I said it, you often hear older parents tell you this and now I can agree.
My girls now are a fantastic help; I have taught them from an early age how to clean up after themselves; make their beds, do a general clean (even cleaning the bathrooms). They are also starting to cook too. Changing nappies is also a task for the 3 older girls. (My 3yr old still refuses to use the potty ~ and this is another days post).
My boys also are starting to be helpful, and also can make their beds (not to perfection; but at least they are tidy); they also have general jobs such as putting out the bins; using the broom & dust pan n’ brush (see here), feeding the animals etc. Even my 3 yr old has a go.
In saying this though, there are days when the kids just won’t pull their weight around the home, they are lazy, stubborn and refuse to help with anything. These are usually the days when mum is worn out, tired, exhausted, tired, run down, has a head ache, is frightfully ill and should be bed ridden. Or perhaps you just “can’t be bothered”.
WE ALL HAVE THESE DAYS!!!
So, what do we do about this when we have these days? Cry? (well “yes you can” sometimes this helps and gives the kids a rude awakening).
Otherwise, if you are feeling unwell, the only remedy is to rest. Forget about the household chores and just STOP. When you have little ones, this may seem hard (especially if you are bed ridden or so ill you can’t move too much), however here are some suggestions:
- Chill out on the lounge, put on a DVD and sit with the kids (who cares if you have watched 4 or 5 during the day).
- Call a friend or family relative to come and watch the kids so you can go back to bed “if you don’t ask, you don’t get”
- If you have a baby, move them into your room (use a portacot), give them enough toys to play with and rest for a little while.
- Coffee and Internet is good too (if you lucky enough to have a laptop or Table/Ipad; take it to bed with you or the lounge).
- If making lunch is also a problem and the kids need to be fed, fruit is always a great option. Just bring the fruit bowl to the lounge and get the kids to help themselves. Plain pasta or spaghetti is another easy lunch/meal for the kids, just boil water, throw it in and strain. A bit of grated cheese and top. Very simple and filling (there is not too much mess either and nothing a vacuum wont pick up).
- Don’t be a Martyr, if you have a headache take something. If you are the only one home with the kids, there is not point in suffering any more. Pain killers are there for a reason (looking after the kids while you are ill is enough sufferance anyway).
- The heat can also be a killer (especially Down Under), here are a couple of suggestions; fill a spray bottle with water for you and the kids (it’s even better sitting in front of a pedestal fan while you spray). A wet washer behind the neck. Or even a bucket of cold water with your feed soaking inside. (I remember doing this through some of my summer pregnancies).
- Evening tiredness and stress can kick in early sometimes too ~ around 3.00 – 4.00pm usually. At most times, this is when the kids are completely wild, have just come home from school and are a riot (not to mention it’s homework time too); coffee is GREAT….but WINE is FANTASTIC!
So those are my suggestions and if none of those work, you could try phoning your hubby and giving him what for and asking him kindly to come home early or take the day off (if possible) so you can rest/sleep and recoup.
Please remember though, you are the most important person in the home the wife & mother. REST, RELAX & REFRESH (the 3 R’s).
Housework can wait and…..