Thursday, September 15, 2011

Swim Lessons - The Three Ps

Swim Lessons are lessons I've learned from being a single mom that are encouragement to other single parents, and as it turns out, married parents too! The biggest lesson is, as Dory from Finding Nemo says, "Just keep swimming!" The rest are nuggets of truth I've learned along the way that made the difference between drowning and survival.

The next lesson to help you just keep swimming through single motherhood has to do both with saving your booty and survival!

  1. Preparation - think about everything that can go wrong and prepare for it, doing everything you can ahead of time.
  2. Procrastination - forget about the things that don't have an immediate impact on your success as a mother and in your career; they will only trip you up and exhaust you.
  3. Prioritization - do the things that mater most first. Period.
Preparation:

Even though you're pooped after a full day of work, and the second day of work packed into cooking and feeding children, disciplining, bathing, and getting them to bed (and all the fights involved in all of those), take advantage of the fact that you're still going! If you sit down once those kiddos are in bed, you'll crash and be sorry in the morning when there are 101 things you have to complete just to get out the door.

If you can just accomplish a few more things before you pass out for the night, you'll be less stressed in the morning and there is a higher probability of you being on time to work :).

Pack lunches. For the kids AND for you. Remember how you
need to be smart with your finances? Yep. Make an extra PB&J
when you're packing for the littles so you don't spend $10 for one
at lunch tomorrow!

Stock up on quick and healthy breakfasts (again for you and
the kids). If you need to go ahead and fill sippy cups with milk
and juice and put them in the fridge to grab in the morning,
do it now!

Find a coffee maker with a Delay Brew button on it. And
thank Jesus for inventing them!

Pack backpacks. As SOON as your kiddos can come even
remotely close to doing this for themselves, let them. For
older kids, this has to become one of their nightly routines.
Diaper bags for infants. Prepare bottles, pack diapers, etc.

Clothes are picked out the night before in my house and have
been for a LONG time. I tell my littles nightly after bath, "go put
on your pjs and pick out your clothes for tomorrow!" I'm
over them looking cute and put together. As long as they're
clothed, we're good.

Also think about things you need to do tomorrow outside of work. Any errands you need to run at lunch or after work before you pick up the kids from daycare? Set it by your purse! And find your keys NOW so you're not looking for them in the morning. Do you know what YOU'RE wearing? If you don't want to think about it, make sure you at least have enough clean clothes to choose from, and soak a few options in Downy Wrinkle Releaser just in case.

Procrastination:

Not like I have to tell you that you're going to be too tired to
make the bed, but seriously, it doesn't matter.

I can't tell you how many unmade beds and naked pillows (without the pillowcases) I've slept on because I just can't bear one more task. And you know what? The world didn't end. I've stacked up a lot of wrinkled clean clothes that waited days for me to fold them because it doesn't matter as much as the other things that have to. Which leads me to the third P.

Prioritization:

Just put first things first. If at any moment during any of the above tasks, you have a scared little that needs hugs and kisses, you drop everything. Of course that also goes for wet beds, puking, and potty training that didn't make it in the pot. And sometimes you're the priority. There are certainly nights where you throw everything above out the window and go to bed early, or stay up late and have YOU time watching TV or catching up with a friend on the phone. Just always ask yourself, "What is most important RIGHT NOW? What MUST be done, and what can wait?"

And always, just keep swimming!

Love,
Missy

2 comments:

Erin said...

I'm neither single, nor a mom yet, but I can give you another time/sanity saver for me with laundry. I am horrible with laundry. And sometimes, there are just more important things to me than folding it right away.

If i'm in a time crunch but need to move loads around, I'll take the dried cloths and lay them out flat, stacking shirts, pants, etc. Then I can get back to what i'm doing, but when I get a chance to fold them, they won't be wrinkled!

And if you don't get around to folding them for a day or two this stack of flat clothes lays nice and patiently unwrinkled on the back of the couch, a chair, the floor, etc. All without wrinkles.

(I'm talking mostly t-shirts, though. Not sure it would work with office-wear.)

honeybeemama said...

that's fantastic, erin! i will definitely try this. i'm sure marc would appreciate it!

 

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