There are days that I absolutely love being a mom. There are other days that it is so stinking hard for me. Honestly, those moments I don’t love it. Of course I love my boys, I love the treasure of being their mom, but during those moments of throwing food, throwing toys, biting, hitting, slamming legos into the crib, disobeying for the millionth time that day and its not even 10:00 am – yeah, those days are really hard.
So, what are you to do in those moments? Today was one of those days for me. So, what happened today is something that I think can apply to every mom when she needs encouraging. Just make it tailored to your need.
1. Be encouraged in the Word – the Gospel. As my husband was leaving this morning – even before he arrived at work – he was encouraging me with Scripture. Not scolding me telling me of all the many ways I had already failed this morning. Not telling me I’m a horrible mother and need to practice all the things I know. No. He knows how to affectively encourage me. This is how he does it. He tells me “Christ is sufficient for my every need – even in my weakness” and sends me Scriptures that he is praying for me – like Hebrews 13:20-21. Benedictions like the one in Hebrews is so beneficial to me – knowing that I have been equipped – I have been given everything I need to be a good mom to those boys today – in the teething stage, in the disobedient moments, in the act of wiping up spilled apple juice for the 3rd time.
Maybe you will need someone else to encourage you in the word. Maybe the encouragement will come through your daily quiet time. Maybe it will come through a song that is playing in the car. However you get the intake of the Word – start here.
2. Hang out with friends who encourage you. I met a new friend at the mall today for play time with our littles and Cow Appreciation Day. Even though we had just met – sharing stories and just seeing interactions and hearing of God’s grace and goodness – that encourages me. The friend you might need to see may be 2 states away so maybe a phone call or a text is all you need to help you persevere. Or maybe see if someone can join you for lunch just to be an encouragement to you. Discouraged moms do not need to be beaten up by legalism. They need to be encouraged by the hope of the Gospel.
3. Write a note of encouragement to someone else. There are so many mom friends in my life. Each time I do a photo shoot I like to include a little note of encouragement. So, I just got some photos printed and sat down to write a note of encouragement to my sweet young mom friend. I’ve known her since she was in high school and now she has an infant sweet little girl. This note didn’t take me long to write it and it wasn’t specific but just written in pink and said I love you. Persevere. How basic is that? But, I know that letters of encouragement can be such a God-send on a tiring day. Do you send snail mail to people? Do it – you will be surprised at what a great blessing it will be – both to you and to the person you are sending it to.
4. Do something for yourself. I think moms are so busy taking care of other people that they seldom do things for themselves. It is not being selfish – it is helping your sanity! My husband is super good at that – giving me time each week – doing whatever in his power to make me “happy” – building in times with friends, giving me alone time to study the Word, write and read, helping out with the dishes – I hope you have a mister like that. Today – I stopped by Mcds and got a $1 Diet Coke and when I got the boys in bed I watched a White Collar episode. Just little things. Like cheap pretty flowers at Trader Joes. Like a Weight Watchers ice cream bar. Like a shopping trip with a friend. Whatever will be a pick me up for you – do it. It may be free like sitting outside on your deck staring up at the sky, or cheap like a coffee or a bouquet of flowers – or if your budget allows it go get a massage, manicure, or new outfit. Take care of your soul – and yes, I do believe that means more than just sitting in the Word (though you noticed I started with that one as I think it is most important).
What are some ways you encourage yourself when you are having a bad mommy day?