Summer is here. Kids home. I’ve exchanged my long solo lunch dates with Chikfil-a drive through. My afternoons smell like sunscreen and I’m realizing I’m getting all the poopy diapers not just the occasional ones Max didn’t do at school.
I’m finding myself loving the slower mornings but feel the creep in of overwhelm when one of my kids asks me what our “plan for the day is.” (I’m supposed to have a plan for them every single day?)
I found myself having a ‘come to Jesus’ moment with my kids at the lunch table on the first day of summer.
Yes that’s right. I made it only hours before I lost my ever-loving mind on my family. See I know part of the problem was that I didn’t establish ground rules and expectations for not only their summer but mine as well.
For some reason my children were under the impression that I would be entertaining them all moments of the day this summer. Nope. Nope. Nope and Nope.
I remember my summers as a kid and no one was ever centering their life around making sure I was having constant fun every second of every day. We still had some amazing summers. We ran around in swimsuits and had tan lines so strong they lasted well into the next summer. Our faces stained with popsicles. Our immaginations running wild. Bike rides, hide and seek, sleep overs and playdates. It was simple and no one was entertaining me. I wouldn’t have dared say I was bored, then all the fun would have been replaced with a chore I probably really didn’t want to do. I spent hours outside and the rest of them with my nose in a book.
Awww the summer of the 90’s.
When we look at Summer we think of it as a break for the kids. No homework, no early morning get to school on time struggle. But what about summer for us mom (or parents)? I love these little people and yes I want them to have fun and a great time but the minute I sense an overwhelm popping up thinking we have to do all the things and go all the places I feel the tightness in my chest and my wallet.
What I’ve realized is that yes it’s their summer vacation, but its also mine. Yeah I’m gonna come in here and claim some of this summer too. We forget all the hard work as moms we also put into the school year! Asking 500 million times if homework got done, having to relearn whatever math they are doing, waking up the little humans that we can never tell what mood they will be in, volunteering, pulling double duty at the office and being mom of the year. Shuffling everyone from one activity to the next like your a full time uber driver.
It’s a lot. Especially in May.
Summer leaves us with the possiblity of slower paced but the reality that it’s all on us now. They want us to clean them, feed them, keep them alive, AND entertain them.
I’m taking a stand this summer and crossing out that last requirement and I suggest you do too.
This summer I’m putting myself first. I’m making a commitment to make sure I am finding joy in all the things before I step out that door with three kids in tow.
I’m making sure my love languages are met so that I can be a better (fun) mom.
I’m making sure I don’t feel the pressure to entertain them and cater to all their needs.
This summer I will teach them to make a sandwhich, or in Jay’s case he might need to learn to eat a sandwhich first.
They will understand the importance of me building my business and brand, even if its early morning, late at night or naptime. They will understand that my business matters to me and that is important.
They may be infront of a screen more than other kids some days and I’m okay with that.
We will be at a pool any chance we get to ensure the tan lines I had as a child, and I’m not going to feel even a little bit bad that they go to childcare at the gym or yoga while I get sweaty and feel good.
We will read lots and still go to bed at our regular school year bedtime not because I’m mean but because I really need that down time in my life to be alone or with my husband. A moment to not be mom and possibly go to the bathroom or shower by myself.
I’m not going to feel obligated to play games and I won’t feel bad for hiring a sitter to come and do that with them instead. Frankly if they were paying me to play games with them I would probably enjoy it more rather than focus on how much they fight.
We will go on lots of bikes rides and I will ignore them everytime they tell me they are hot or tired….it is summer and we live in Texas, get over it. This is how I got every where in the 90’s.
We will also eat popsicles till we can’t anymore because I believe that’s truly the food of summer.
I can’t allow myself to get stressed by it. I didn’t sign them up for a million camps like I normally do. I don’t have any huge vacation plans. And I’m not going to plan an insane amount of activities for them. I’m going to find the joy in summer too and appreciate it as a break for me too, not just them.
They might be home more and driving me crazy, but I’m reclaiming my time, my summer, and allowing boredom to happen.
The cure for boredom is curiousity. Your bored? Go be curious about something. My new summer motto.
I’m not sure this is something that all moms can relate to. Maybe you totally have it figured out and you enjoy every moment summer brings with your kid. If this is the case I’m so happy you have found your joy in motherhood and YOURSELF because that’s what matters. But to the mom that maybe is like me and struggles to find that joy in the summer, feels the pressure to make sure her kids are happy and entertained every moment of the summer and is feeling overwhelmed and needing a break…Girl its time to RECLAIM YOUR SUMMER.
Go find yourself a sitter. Book something special just for you, even if its a coffee date with your new book. Take your mom guilt and put it right there in your back pocket and don’t let it come back out. You deserve this break with out the pressure that summer can bring.