I am ready for 2019!! New year, new things!
Have fun and be safe!!
I am ready for 2019!! New year, new things!
Have fun and be safe!!
Today is my 36th birthday, and I’m picking two lyrics. Break out the birthday cake!
Christina Perri is a talented mom and singer. She’s also in recovery.
I can’t remember when I first heard her music, but I do remember thinking, “Wow, she’s got a great voice! Does she have more music?”
She’s taken some time off because she got married and had an adorable daughter (I follow her on Twitter) but new music is coming soon.
My first pick is from “Arms”:
“You put your arms around me and I’m home”
Thanks to the wonders of YouTube, I found this randomly one day while watching other videos. I haven’t listened to this song more than once or twice in the three years since Jake died, because it hurts so much.
I can listen to all the Taylor Swift, Kanye West and even Nine Inch Nails but this song rips my heart into pieces. It’s mainly this lyric.
It’s not very often that your heart finds its home, and mine found a (second) home with Jake. After his death and so many things gone terribly wrong with Matthew, it took a long time for me to even come close to feeling this way with Matthew again. I can happily say that I’m able to fall asleep in his arms every night and feel okay doing so.
The second pick is from “Human”
“I’m only human
I bleed when I fall down”
Everyone is the same when we look inside- that’s the idea behind this song. I think everyone is so quick to forget that these days. I don’t get political on this blog, but you get the idea.
It doesn’t matter what you look like on the outside, where you come from, what language you speak, or any of that. We are all human. Let’s treat each other that way, shall we?
Picture courtesy of Pinterest
I have a guest post today! I haven’t had one in a while- enjoy Gina’s post on getting kids to embrace healthy habits.
We all want our kids to be fit, whole, and healthy for at least some of their lives. The problem is that kids learn best from what they see, not what you say. Healthy habits for kids begins with you – the parent – taking care of yourself first. That’s your best way to create a family-health home.
If you want to create a great life for your kids, begin by helping yourself to have a great life. Here are six ways to get started:
I’m not going to lie – getting in shape takes discipline. Starting a fitness routine when you’ve never really committed before takes a huge act of will. The trick is really to trick yourself. You can make goals and push yourself to get them down. Here are some things that have worked for me:
We cannot expect our kids to develop healthy habits if we are squirreling away treats for ourselves. And guess what? Even if you think they don’t notice, I assure you, they DO. TRUST ME ON THIS.
So stop it. Extra sugary treats aren’t going to help your waistline or your gut health. Seriously, if you want a sweet treat, have an occasional glass of wine, or do the MIND diet and have a small glass of wine daily. (No kidding, this is part of the anti-Alzheimer’s diet!)
Now, go take stock – what’s in your fridge and cabinets? It should be mostly legumes, fruits and veggies that your system can tolerate, a lesser amount of healthy cuts of meat, fish, and poultry (as in, grass-fed, MCS certified or pastured), and fewer carbs.
For example, I LOOOOOVE pasta and was raised with eating it every few days. Today, I try instead to eat bean pasta or spaghetti squash. (This is not for everyone – my husband won’t get on board!) If your kids love pasta, you can make this switch depending on their age. (Kids love the sauce mostly!) For others, it might take some time, but again, if you experiment with different vegetables and love it, then they’ll likely follow suit!
I’ve heard you need to drink anywhere from 50-70% of your body weight! That’s a lot of water but again, the kids are watching! I love drinking water because my dad made a ritual of it: special glass with a handle, loaded with ice cubes, that sat out all day and no one, I mean NO ONE was allowed to touch it. (I did one time and that’s one of the rare times I incurred Dad’s wrath before my teen years.)
So go ahead, make your water drinking a daily ritual. And make sure it’s clean water too, ok? You can buy a special glass, keep a bottle with you at all times, drink seltzer with fruit, eat water veggies, consider buying a water cooler – whatever it takes to make sure you get your daily intake of water.
Parents agonize over getting their kids to sleep…it took Zoe until she was 5 to sleep through the night!! We know that our kids require this health habits, but when it comes to our needs, we just stay up as long and as late as we like. But impaired sleep can affect everything, from your heart health to your focus, your productivity, and your mental well-being, not to mention derailing your workout. If you don’t know why you aren’t sleeping, you have to solve this issue. Some possible contributors include:
Getting to the bottom of stress or physical health issues is critical in making your sleep better. If you’re not sure of the cause, consult with your doctor.
Now I’m going to say something you won’t like: take care of yourself when you are sick! Way too many people simply keep their same schedule and then dose with OTC drugs. Unfortunately, you are often extending the life of your illness by doing this because you are suppressing the body’s system for clearing illness – such as a fever. Naturally, we all have commitments we cannot avoid, but as much as possible, use sick time for when you are truly sick. Or work from home, if you can. Rest, relax, and make a fresh bowl of chicken soup.
I’ve told this story before but last year, we all got some version of the stomach flu. My kids, the healthiest people in our home because of my diligence, were each sick for about 8 hours. I was sick for nearly 25. My husband? 3 days. It matters what you eat, how you sleep, and if you take care of your gut health, just like exercise matters too. None of us did any OTC drugs; we just chilled out and let it runs its course, mainly because when you’re only sick for a few hours, you don’t even think about the doctor (although my husband did)! In fact, he might have gone – I can’t remember.
And finally, you need to take care of your brain. That means a lot of things, including getting exercise, good food, enough sleep, and having healthy relationships. It also means:.
Not everyone has childhood trauma but for those who do, it’s important you deal with your trauma so those issues don’t impact your family in a negative way. Making the connection between childhood trauma and adult illnesses and relationship problems can be challenging, but it can be tremendously freeing. It can guide you on the road to creating healthy habits for your kids. It also enables you to start the healing process.
If you feel like you’ve been swimming against some invisible current for years, it’s a relief to know where it may be coming from, says science journalist Donna Jackson Nakazawa in Psychology Today’s online forum.
Taking the quiz on adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) is the first and most important step toward healing, according to Nakazawa. Understanding whether you’ve been affected by childhood trauma can help you start taking steps to undo it – and perhaps try some new approaches with your children. Here is some science-based advice from StressHealth.org:
With these steps and knowledge of your own childhood trauma, you’ll likely find it easier to help your child be happy and resilient.
Remember that healthy habits for kids start with you and your physical and mental health. Learn how to heal from toxic stress at Stress Health.
When I thought about becoming a mom, I imagined things being a bit messy but still fun. I imagined kids being noisy, toys everywhere and maybe a couple of pets adding to the mix.
This is what I got- but I didn’t count on anxiety, depression and other things happening. I became a perfectionist mom and I didn’t even realize it. I wasn’t happy, I didn’t even like myself at one point.
Things started getting out of control shortly after Lily began First Steps therapies for her developmental delays right after her first birthday in 2009. She had occupational, speech and physical delays- she needed speech therapy until she aged out of First Steps at three years old in 2011.
I was deeply anxious about getting things right with her after feeling like I had messed up. I felt like I hadn’t spent enough time with her. I blamed myself for having her at 37 weeks. (This was not a reason for her delays)
I wanted to get things right. I wanted to be a better mom. I paid close attention to what her therapists did and said. I made sure the boys were occupied during the sessions to avoid interruptions, the house was clean and that dinner was ready to be made as soon as they were over.
I had the sessions scheduled for the same time every week. In fact, after speech therapy ended, we felt weird on Wednesdays at 4 PM because Denise wasn’t coming over anymore. It was like something was missing.
This somehow spread to more than just trying to set up a routine and keep things smooth. I felt the tension between Matthew and I build in this time and he was in denial. To avoid more of his anger and lower my anxiety, I started cleaning more, to the point that I had a sheet on my refrigerator detailing what had to be cleaned each day. I wouldn’t go to bed for the night until it was done.
It was the only thing I could control. If something wasn’t done before Matthew got home, I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t sit down and eat dinner. I’m glad the kids barely remember this time because all they would remember would be me running around the house cleaning up behind them as they made a mess.
As Lily’s delays were resolved, Julian’s behavioral issues became obvious. In fact, the two issues overlapped for a time. I barely functioned because I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t sleep. The fights got worse, no matter how clean the house was.
I kept the house spotless but it wasn’t enough. I worked full time, cooked, cleaned and took care of the kids. It was never enough. Running around after three kids wore me down. I just wanted out.
I had a mini-stroke in 2013. This was brought on by a migraine that went terribly wrong- you can read about that in Invisible Changes According to my (then) new neurologist, I needed to make some serious changes in my life and fast. I was only 30 and way too stressed out. Being a perfectionist was not working for me.
Confession #1: I probably should have gone to therapy at this point but… I got there in 2015. I wasn’t into self-care nearly as much as I should have been. I was just trying to keep going. I did, however, toss that damn cleaning sheet and have never made another one. I’m lucky if the kitchen floor gets wet mopped once a week. I’m still pretty intense about cleaning my countertops and hate vacuuming but the house doesn’t look bad.
Dr. Plato also recommended doing what makes me happy. I realized that keeping my house spotless was not making me or the kids happy because I was constantly yelling at them (yes, yelling, something I am still working on) to keep things clean all. the. time.
This is also not a thing anymore, and their rooms are slightly less than clean. I have a teenager and two preteens so I will let you imagine what these bedrooms look like. Confession #2: I make the kids clean their rooms once a week. Lily’s room looks like a kid’s version of the show “Hoarders” whether it’s clean or not, so this just helps keep it down a bit.
I clean daily, and I run a daily tab in my head of what I did get done in my head. This gives me a small sense of satisfaction so that I don’t feel useless. I also developed a routine of not cleaning anything after 8 PM. If something isn’t done by then, it’s just not getting done.
The first tip was something that my former therapist helped me with, because I hate the idea of feeling useless, and this helps a lot now that I am staying at home. The second one was a rule that I started to help me sleep better (and more) at night because one of my biggest migraine triggers is not sleeping well. Confession #3: These things help me from slipping back into being a perfectionist and counts as self-care, so yay for me.
It may be a bit difficult to try being easier on yourself, but the weight off your shoulders is well worth it. Perfectionism, as a mom or not, can put a damper on your daily life.
Do you struggle with perfectionism? How do you deal with it?