Have you ever had one of those moments where you want to explode? I’m talking tantrum mode for adults. I know I have and I’m sure most other parents have too! Sometimes it can be the smallest thing that sets you off. But it’s the straw that breaks the camel's back!
This week I am in the middle of house renovations. A stressful time for anyone, but made even more stressful when you have small feet walking around the house with only socks on. I can see danger at every turn, yet the kids seem oblivious to it. I think they are almost enjoying the upheaval, for them, it's a bit like having a mini-adventure course to duck and dive over, but unfortunately for me, this adventure course is inside our home not outside!
If I have said the words 'please wear your slippers' once, I have said it 100 times this week. I am even at the stage now of thinking about allowing the kids to wear their shoes permanently, (maybe even to bed!) so they don't stand on nails, power tools or step on broken tiles. The house is literally upside down. The only positive side I can see of this situation currently is that it is actually forcing me to clean. I have hovered four times already today (in-between a bout of eating 5 custard cream biscuits to calm my nerves). I normally wouldn't hover four times in a whole week!
I've learnt this week, that when I feel that sensation building up where I want to scream like a toddler, I should remove myself from the situation if I can and its safe to do so... On more than one occasion, I've stepped into the garden and taken a few deep breaths and said to myself 'this too shall pass', before going back into the house and starting the hoovering / clean up / adventure course supervision again.
I’ve found this mantra useful it helps to keep me grounded in reality. Nothing bad will last forever, but nor will everything good. I recalled reading somewhere recently about really trying to use all of your senses when stressed, to really notice your environment as this can help to deflect the tension. So when outside, I try to think about.... what can I see? What can I smell? What can I hear? What can I touch? What can I taste?
I have also found that venting my frustration has helped hugely. I have sent progress reports and texts to friends and family showing where I feel all is lost and the helpful advice and texts back have helped me to refocus my perspective.
Staying calm under pressure has its benefits. I have found it helps me become less stressed, which in turn is also setting a positive example for my kids. I want them to see that things don't always go to plan, but it's not the end of the world, Calm is my new superpower as a busy mother, what's yours?