Take it from an expert, like me.
Here area few surefire ways a mother can lose her mind this summer.
1. Volunteer for everything. The kids are out of school. You have more time, right?
2. Enroll your kids in every summer program and club under the sun. You love spending your summer days chauffeuring and shuffling kids from one activity to thenext. If you have air conditioning in your car, you have no room for complaint.
3. Reorganize your basement...and your attic...and your garage. In fact, the whole house needs reorganizing. You might as well just cancel those day trips to the beach. You have work to do, missus.
4. Demand your kids to partake in an extreme summer reading challenge. A thousand books by the end of August? No sweat. Believe me, all those tears and screaming matches will be well worth it.
5. Feel guilty about not giving your kids the vacation of their life. Tell yourself that you are an awful friend for not hosting BBQs every weekend at your place. Live in the constant drip of regret that you did not get done what you wanted to this summer. If you make yourself feel bad enough, you may just do better next summer.
This summer, let’s not lose our sanity in the madness of “striving.” Let’s make this summer a season of surrender.
Try these tactics for keeping a sound mind:
1. Surrender the need to say ‘yes’ to everything and everyone.
2. Surrender the necessity to have every minute and activity scheduled and accounted for. Our best memories are often born out of the spontaneous moments we make room for.
3. Surrender the nagging To-Do list of home projects. Pick one thing off the endless list and tackle it with excellence.
4. Surrender the notion that while our kids are off from school, we must step in and be their teacher. While education is important, our priority is to be “mom” first. Find something that that you can do with your child that will both encourage learning and build your relationship with them. This should be something you both want to do.
5. Surrender the notorious guilt we pile on ourselves when we don’t do what we hoped to accomplish over summer break. Instead of allowing summer to become a swarm of unhealthy expectations, choose to make it a season of conscious gratefulness. Don’t keep a tab of what didn’t get done. Write a list in your heart of all the good you have seen and experienced by slowing down and relishing moments of free time! This will make your summer full of the warmth and freedom we all long for.
Noelle Rhodes is married to her best friend, Troy, and 'mama' to two of the most hilarious human beings to exist: Silas and Olive Pearl. She and her family reside in Derry/Londonerry, Northern Ireland, as missionaries. When she is not wrangling her children or beating her husband in a game of Scrabble, you would probably find her doing laundry. Noelle blogs at Coffee with Noelle.