“Mama, do you feel nervous?”
There was a little voice at the bottom of my feet while I was in the bathroom curling my hair that spoke these calm, sweet words.
“I am, baby. How did you know?” I asked.
“I heard you tell daddy there was something big today. I think you are meeting someone new. I get scared when I meet new people, too. You can bring my blanket with if you want.”
Show Them You Believe in Yourself
Conversations like this happen often at our house, and I bet they happen at yours as well whether you recognize it or not. Those little ones in your house are listening, watching, and reenacting the things that you do.
I am a mental health therapist. I see a lot of moms throughout the week, and the number one struggle moms have is believing in themselves. The number one thing these moms DO NOT struggle with is believing in their children.
Most of us can identify the strengths of our kids, but we can’t do the same for ourselves. The problem is, our kids are going to recreate what we do. When they play with their Little People, they are recreating the life you are showing them. The words you say are coming out of their little mouths. That cute saying you always say (whether appropriate or not) is being spoken by their little lips.
They can feel the belief you have in them, and if you believe in yourself (or don’t) they can see it.
So what do you do when your light is dim and you don’t believe in yourself anymore? Start from scratch! So many new and seasoned moms struggle with figuring out who they are now. I hear things like, “I don’t know what I like to do,” “I feel guilty whenever I am out of the house,” and “I just need a break from being a mom.” These are common and normal feelings, along with “I don’t even know who I am anymore.”
Ways to Take Care of You
- Try new things. Many moms don’t find joy in the same things they found joy in prior to having children. You may have to start over. If you didn’t like swimming before, try it again. Is there a new book club starting up? Grab a seat. Always thought knitting was for grannies? Give it a shot! You won’t know until you try it.
- Network with other moms. Search Facebook for local groups, such as Fargo Moms Group or Moms Supporting Moms FM. The Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE) in Moorhead also has classes for parents and babies, and there are quite a few local mom groups if you a quick internet search.
- Find some consistent alone time. If you have family in town, ask them if they can commit to taking the kids for a few hours one day each week. Pick one night a week your husband takes the kiddos solo so you can get out of the house alone. If these aren’t an option, grab a gym membership where you can get some workout time and time to get ready afterward…alone! You don’t even have to work out; just grab your coffee and catch some TV. We are better parents when we have time to ourselves!
- Reflect on what is going well. I utilize a gratitude journal every day, where I write down at least 3 things that went well that day. Some days this is super easy and some days this is super hard. Do it anyway. We owe it to ourselves to remind ourselves how spectacular we really are.
Our little ones are always watching, so show them what it means to really love and believe in yourself.