These first few weeks on the hoof, so to speak, have been happy times of competence and flowing rhythm mixed and mingled with foggy bewilderment of Mommy Brain and the subsequent breakdown of flow and peace. Luckily, the good times have outweighed the (ahem) challenging times. And I haven’t quite been transported back to the days of one infant, one toddler, when I felt as though I was truly losing it. Losing everything. But it sure is bringing back memories and striking a little too close to home sometimes.
When Mommy Brain incapacitates my entire being and ability to function (did I mention the word fog? it’s been a heavy, thick fog), I reach deep into my inner self. Deep into the reserves. I pull out some of what I’ve accrued in almost seven years of mommy-ing small children.
Surely seven years must render something useful. Some lesson or fortitude gained from the hard work, sweat, tears, and insanities of previous years must be available to buoy me now. I’ve been practicing some of these things for years. I should be better at them now, right?
I thought I’d jot down a list. A rather random list due to the inability to follow one thought completely from beginning to end without getting lost along the way and having to regroup, focus, and try again. But a list nonetheless, because I like lists. They help.
- Be methodical.
- Accept that you now dwell in the Planet of Slow. Apply for citizenship.
- Be kind to yourself.
- Keep your wits about you. Be on full alert. Focus, focus, focus.
- Go to bed early.
- Muster up courage. Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, “I will try again tomorrow. ~Mary Ann Radmacher. (It’s been awhile since this has been a daily comfort. I must admit, it’s more invigorating to roar.)
- Be faithful to what works. Ditch what doesn’t. Try new things until something works. Repeat.
- Use dogged determination. Sometimes mulish determination works too.
- Stay on task. Return to task after interruptions. Keep returning to task until finished.
- Make time to be alone. That means, without anybody.
- Be with your child for a quiet moment here and there.
And the thing that really helps us through these times of transition?
- Plan out every moment of every day. Even Sunday. Otherwise we all get lost in the fog…