I am so far from having this mom gig figured out. And just like any other mom, I am learning everyday. There is SO much they don’t tell you when you enter the world of motherhood and there is so much left out of all of those parenting books… (not that I read any of them). It is always the small and simple things that help you tremendously. And you usually learn those things the hard way. (hi.) Here is what I have figured out over time that I wish I knew when Carson was a baby…
Don’t over do it. That ginorm 1st birthday party that they will never remember… was it worth all of that money? For me? Nope. There are going to be SO many expenses that magically pop up as your little one gets older; save that money!
Find a steady balance in your career and the mom gig. It is extremely important to be able to provide for your family and make a career for yourself, especially if you’re doing this on your own. You might have to make some sacrifices at home and at work. You will learn when to take time off and when to work late.
If you can, get the maid. Even if she comes once every other month, it will help keep you sane.
Don’t compete with other moms. Your kid will ALWAYS be better than her kid. No need to make that a competition…
Don’t forget to take care of YOURSELF. Go get a massage. Get your rest. Go to the dentist. Get your work outs in. Take time for yourself.
You are going to get frustrated. The way you react to your frustrations will reflect onto your kid.
Tell them how proud you are of them daily. Everyone needs some positive reassurance every now and then (I know I do) and kids need it that much more. And again, it’s the little things. Tell them they did a great job cleaning the table off. That they were so brave during that storm. That they finished their homework all by themselves.
Be a tough lover. It is important to be tough on them, give them high expectations and don’t back down… not even when they give you that look… You know what look I’m talking about! But when you are tough on them, remind them how much you love them and hug and kiss them.
Know when to say no. You will have plans with friends you will have to turn down. You might not be able to buy those shoes. It probably isn’t a good idea for the kiddo to eat that whole bag of Sour Patch Kids.
Know when to say yes. Take a night off and go out with your girlfriends! You worked your ass off on that project, buy the shoes. It’s Friday night, let him eat the candy. You see what I did there?
Speaking of girlfriends, focus on your core girlfriends. You no longer have time to be a socialite and keep up with all of those acquaintances. Your core girlfriends will respect you and your struggle as a mother. They shouldn’t expect you to pick up the bar tab, to go on Saturday shopping sprees and to go out regularly.
Give your kid a bed time! There is nothing better than getting your kid to bed by 8:15 and being able to kick back, watch Real Housewives and drink your wine without any interruptions.
Always have wine on hand. A glass of wine (or two) after bed time is kind of just as healthy as taking your daily vitamins. Cheers!