I am constantly comparing myself to other mothers. I spend too much time at my computer writing and editing pictures. I pin more educational activities than I actually do with my children. I spend more time thinking about being a better mom, than I do trying to be one.
But the truth is that I want to be a better Mom. My children deserve the very best.
It starts with me...not my children. Sure, I can teach my boys to be respectful and help my daughters grow into confident women, but at the end of the day, if I do not keep myself happy, I am no good to them. They need me.
Did you hear me? Our babies need us. We need to keep our flow...our juju. We need to stay healthy, focused and well balanced. We need to remember that we matter and that we are separate entities from our beautiful children. Here are my 10 reminders on how to be the best version of Momma I can be for my kiddos.
1. Rise and shine. Wake up before the children, have lunches packed, breakfasts ready and clothes picked out for the day. Be showered, refreshed and geared with your morning cup of coffee. Or two.
2. Energize. Coffee...absolutely. But be certain to energize with good foods to: an apple, a banana or some yogurt -- pick your pleasure. Take vitamins, drink water and remember that you matter. If you want to be around for your children's lives, you need to take care of yourself. Set a good example. And for goodness sake, take a minute to hear only the sound of your chews. It is pure joy.
3. Stay on time. Try to never run late. Running late equals a mean mommy. It means a disturbance of peace and chaotic children. Keep to the schedule, watch the clock, and stay focused. You can do this.
4. Don't sweat the small stuff. Messy faces and spilt milk won't matter 10 years from now. We have wipes, towels and the rest of our lives. Look around and find what really matters right now.
5. Stay active. Get up off your bum. Dance in the living room. Play tag in the kitchen. Go exploring outside. Act. Do. Be a participant in your children's lives. I guarantee you will have more fun twirling with your daughter than sitting on the couch. Plus, it keeps your heart young.
6. Unplug for dinner. No phones, no iPads, no disturbances whatsoever. Sit, talk, discuss, debate, question; and more importantly, listen. Listen to everything. The big. The small. The good. The bad. Keep your eyes up and your heart open.
7. Run on a schedule. Always be prepared for what is coming next. Know the drill. Hold your children to it. Life runs smoother when you know what to expect.
8. Go with the flow. I know, I know, I just said stick to a schedule. But sometimes, life gets in the way. If your child suddenly becomes interested in an insect crawling outside, get out the magnify glasses and join them. Take life as it comes. Enjoy it. Life is too short to always follow these rules.
9. Learn from yesterday. Hopefully there were ups, but certainly there were downs. Learn from them and move on. Just keep swimming.
10. Be ready for tomorrow. Tomorrow is coming whether you are ready for it or not. Be ready for it. Be excited for it.