Sunday, November 23, 2014

When my cup is empty...

"Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, stays these couriers MOMS from the swift completion of their appointed rounds." Do you ever feel like the historically famous Pony Express motto was actually written for us? I do. Rain or shine, happy or sad, sick or well we mom up. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say I'm not the only one who sometimes feels like it's all a little too much. Pinterest says I'm not alone when I go to the bathroom with an audience or develop "shower schizophrenia" when I get into the shower while my kids are supposed to be napping. I hear noises. Know what I mean? I love my family so much. My children are my greatest joy! I love watching them learn new skills and discover new things. I love that I still get a thrill every time my husband walks through the door. I know I'm not alone with those feelings either.
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You see the thing is I already know I will miss this. My oldest is only 3 1/2 and I don't know what happened. One night I went to bed a newly wed and I woke up the next morning with 3 children. It was that fast! But the truth is that in the whirlwind of changing diapers, nursing, potty training, potty training accidents, playing referee, constant instruction, cleaning (or not), night wakes.... that's when I find myself wishing they were older. I lose my motivation to live my day intentionally with a purpose. I find myself turning on the tv and leaving it on just so I can have some peace. When it feels like my life revolves around everything I'm not doing, that is when I start thinking in terms of survival rather than joy.

It's usually when the kids have spent a day or two in front of the tv and I start feeling tempted to lock myself in the closet that I realize I've forgotten about myself. I've forgotten about my needs, I likely haven't showered or peed alone in days, I probably haven't been out of the house for a week or more, I may have gone days without talking to anyone over the age of 3 besides my husband and I may have gone days without drinking enough water, eating enough food and definitely I haven't exercised. I'm slowly learning how to pull myself out of these funks and how to catch myself before the burn out actually happens.

Get in The WORD:
This one should go without saying but as a mom of 3 children under 3... It's easy for me to realize that I haven't been in the Word since the previous weeks Sabbath teaching! So right now I am trying to read the weekly world wide bible study and am also reading some of the psalms every day. Or if I can't read I listen on BibleIs, a really great iPhone app that plays the bible out loud. We love the dramatized option. When I have the time, I get on and I look up the original translation of any words I am curious about to try and get a deeper understanding. The truth is that nothing else in the post will help any of us if our walk with Him isn't top priority. He is the greatest source of our strength, comfort and sanity.

Even more uplifting than getting in The Word is worship for me. Starting the day out genuinely praising my King changes the entire dynamic of my day. I have a few playlists (this one here and this one here) that I enjoy listening to that really help bring me into worship. I play these sometimes all day long and we dance together while I let the Spirit stir my heart.

I am genuinely exhausted. This weekend I hit what I like to call The Wall.. I could hardly get out of bed the entire weekend and slept as much as possible. My sweet and loving husband really helped with the kids and let me rest. I slept in, I napped, I napped some more...  I skipped our usual time together and went to bed early and then slept in and napped some more. I realized after this weekend that I need to be more intentional and responsible about my sleep habits. I need to actually go to bed on time. It's so easy to stay up later then I should because I crave that alone time, time alone with my husband or simply to clean without interruption. The problem is that it's backfired and now Im too tired to function properly in the day. My current goal is to be in bed by 10pm, phone free (no scrolling pinterest before bed!) so that I am asleep by 10:30pm.
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Take responsibility:
I was telling my husband how tired I am and though very understanding he said something that really got my attention. He reminded me about my vitamins and I agreed they would help. He sighed. A big sigh! That's when he said it, "You know what you need to do to be better but you don't do it. It's not that hard to take a vitamin.". Ummm... ya but I forget and I get busy and the house and, and, and..... I stopped myself and realized that while I am in a stage of life that is busy and hard, I am the one responsible for my burnout. I am blessed with a husband who will take over so I can shower and workout or even so I can just do my toe nails if I want to. I have all the vitamins and essential oils I need to begin healing the adrenal fatigue I know that I am experiencing. I can go to bed at 10pm (usually). I can choose to take care of what I do have control over so that I am the best me that I can be for my family.

So that's what I'm working on right now. Honoring my own needs so that I can be better for my family and better for myself. What do you do when you are burned out? Is this a struggle for you? What are a couple things that fill up your cup?

Written By Happily Domestic Contributor Brittney Thompson

Brittney is a stay at home wife and mother of 2 boys and 1 baby girl. She loves crafting, cooking, anything outdoors and of course writing! She and her family have embarked on a new adventure and are now in beautiful Wisconsin.

Permission was obtained  from to use the photos contained in this post.

Linked Up: HHM, TimeWarpWife, CornerstoneConfessions
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Kalista Sabourin said...

I love this! I am guilty of not doing...well, all of those thing. Particularly going to bed on time. It's true that I have no one to blame for myself some days. Thanks for sharing! :)

Brittney Thompson said...

Kalista, that is where I am most guilty as well! Even as a child I was a night owl, it doesn't work so well with early bird little ones, lol! Thanks for commenting!

Lori said...

This was such a good post. I'm not in this season of life anymore. My children are mostly grown, but still my cup runs dry sometimes. I can tell you that, that will never change. The challenges change, but they don't lessen. Learning to take care of yourself when you're a young mom, will only benefit you and your family the rest of the journey. A couple things I'm trying to do in my own life, is to remember it's okay to stay no, when you know you need to stay home and rest. I also have found the benefit, even on a bad weather day, to go outside and breathe fresh air. There are so many things I WANT to do that will help, but haven't made them a priority.

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