I don’t know about y’all but there are times when I just don’t want to parent. There are times when I just want my son to go to his room and play or do anything but bother me. Then there are times when I look at him and think, “Wow, what did I do to deserve such a great kid? What did I do to get the most amazing job in the world of being his mommy?” I know what you’re thinking, what harsh and cute things to say at the same time but it’s the truth… it’s my truth!
People compliment my parenting and our relationship all the time, saying how easy I make it look. But, it’s not so effortless and there are times when I sit up at night and really analyze our day to day. I ask myself did I punish him enough, was I too soft, or is he too spoiled?
The truth is, you’ll never know if you’re doing it right but there are a few things that I’ve learned over the past 6 years that make parenting a little bit smoother and even (dare I say it) a little bit enjoyable! So here we go, just a few of my single mom secrets that help me keep my cool!
Say a Little Prayer, Count to Ten, Woo-sah
It’s so easy to lose your cool, when you’re trying to do a million things at once, and your kid is running around or when you’ve told them to put their shoes on over & over. I think the most stressful thing is trying to get a six year old ready and out the door by yourself but if you just say a little prayer or stop and count to 10 right when you’re about to go ape-shit you’ll definitely regroup and tell yourself I got this!
Always Be Prepared
In some aspects of my life I’m pretty organized, especially when it comes to my son. If he needs something, I got it. If he’s going to someone’s house there’s always an extra something for him! My mom once told me “if I have him and I think he might need something I just look in his backpack and sure enough you’ve packed it!” This is everything from extra clothes and snacks to toys. You never know what they might need and if you already have it you won’t have to scramble looking for it or have to go out of your way to get it.
Remember if you stay ready you’ll never have to get ready!
Don’t Obsess Over Things Out of Your Control
Things happen. Plans change. It’s life. You ever notice when you stress and obsess your kid seems to act out at that same exact time? It’s because they can feel your energy. They literally come from us and that connection is strong! Relax, focus on them and watch whatever it is that’s happening get moved from the “why can’t this be like this” category to the “it will work itself out” category. Focus on the things you do have control over and that’s it!
Honey! When it’s just you and your kiddo no one is around to pat you on the back so you have to do it yourself. If you got out the house in record time, congratulations! If you made dinner, got them washed up, in the bed, and still have time for yourself, congratulations! Some days are a struggle but on those days when you’re absolutely killing the parent game don’t be ashamed to say I DID THAT!!
Find a Work Schedule that Works
I have an amazing job, team, and boss that are super understanding when it comes to my son and life in general! I lucked up but that might not be the case for a lot of single parents. If you’re looking for a job keep your schedule and the time you want to spend with your child in mind. We forget that in interviews you are interviewing them too so ask the necessary questions so you can know right away if it’s going to work. If you already have a job that you love don’t be afraid to express your needs to your employer because most of the time they want to work with you!
Schedule Kid-Free Time
Last but not least, take some time for yourself. This doesn’t have to be over the top or elaborate like a girls night out or a date night. This can be as simple as getting a sitter so you can get a pedicure, go see a movie or go to Starbucks for an hour! Those little breaks allow you to really take a breather and regroup.
Hopefully these secrets are easy to apply and can help take some of the stress off being a single mom or parent! Parenting is not easy but I feel like through all the stress and hard work if you remember your why (that happy kid) things will come naturally!
What are some of your parenting secrets?