I was talking to a friend of mine the other day and she said, "There just doesn't seem to be a way to reconcile any of this." As I tossed and turned through the night, looking at my phone each time, I was overwhelmed with being overwhelmed. I was overwhelmed with not knowing what the blankness of tomorrow held.
Am I losing myself? Is there hope? When will all of this end? I realized I needed to get some sanity back, and identifying some main gaps would be the start.
Our choices for social interactions, parks, playgrounds, and pools are more limited than ever before, causing spikes of cabin fever as mental and emotional margins dwindle. Most women I know are planners, and we've been stripped of that luxury.
Pinterest offered some beautiful, colorful daily schedule options that seemed promising until I tried to implement them (kind of like the meal plans I work so hard on and abandon by Wednesday).
In conjunction with an unprecedented political climate, work demands, hourly snack requests and guilt from too much screen time, we're bound to break. Mix in sibling fights (that could reassure us that maybe they could always have WWE as a back up career), marital tension and social media posts of mom friends who seem to be nailing the quarantine mom life and we'll just call it a day.
Here are three simple things to implement today:
1. Put the phone down. As moms, we set the thermostat for the house, so we have to make sure we’re guarding our hearts. Proverbs 4:23 says “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” The daily news reports or shared political posts from our summer camp friend from 15 years ago take up most of our social media feeds, leaving us discouraged when we finally put the phone down and our brains feel different (usually right when we wake up to start our days). Social media already had a bad rap for increasing female competition and discontentment, now they’re sources of anxiety and we end up starting our days that way. Everything we do flows from the health of our hearts and minds, so making sure we guard what goes into them is key. Try plugging your phone up in the bathroom at night so you’re less tempted to look at it right when you wake up in the morning. Replace the space on your nightstand with a devotional (a great one is Pressing Pause, 100 Quiet Moments for Moms to Meet with Jesus)
2. Set a goal everyday. Whether it’s clearing the floor enough to vacuum, accomplishing 3 loads of laundry, washing everyone’s sheets in the house, or simply going a full day with no screens, set a goal. Maybe it’s a recipe for dinner you’ve been wanting to try, cleaning the baseboards of the bathroom from the toilet paper dust that falls on them, spending a designated hour of play time with the kids, or weeding the flower beds. Set a goal and stick to it, it’s amazing what that does for us!
3. Get out of the house every few days. This is a little more challenging because of social distancing but it’s possible! Sunshine and exercise play a big part in the body’s regulation of hormones, blood flow, and chemical brain balance – and vitamin D is good for everyone! There are many local parks, walking trails, bike paths, or open fields to kick a soccer ball. If you live in the sun belt, try going early in the morning and ending with a fun picnic for lunch before you head home. Many picnic pavilions are open, so this is a fun end to the cooler morning temps. Then head home for a mandatory hour of quiet time and you’ve had a productive morning!
You can do this mama! You were made for it! 2 Corinthians 12:9 says “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
God sees you. He knows how hard it is, and He’s sitting right beside you ready to hear from you and overwhelm you with peace through His very presence today! Take a few moments, take a chance, and start talking to Him. He's listening!