With Thanksgiving upon us, I thought this would be a great time to talk about gratitude and thankfulness!
So, how to be a grateful mom even in the frustrating and challenging motherhood moments?
It’s not always easy but let me share a story from a few days ago…
The other day I was having a challenging time with the kids.
They were both kind of having one of those off days where no matter what I offered them to eat, wear, play with, or do, they wanted the exact opposite.
Not only did they want the exact opposite of everything I offered them, but they wanted to do the exact opposite of everything I asked them to do.
You know those days all too well, right mama?
Then, as we were getting ready to get out of the house before we all lost our marbles, I threw a pair of shoes over to Charlie to put on and he says “mama, they are too small.”
I annoyingly stomped over to him and tried to force them on his feet while telling them both that they were not being good listeners today.
Claire kept opening the front door and slamming it shut, Charlie just would not sit still and was yelling something over to Claire.
I’m bent over, fully dressed in my coat trying to get those shoes on, at this point sweating.
I went on and on about all the things they were doing wrong and then realized, he was right, the shoe really was too small.
I gave him another pair and we made it to the car, I strapped them in, threw my bag over the passenger seat and sat down.
To give myself a moment to relax and breath from what felt like a very chaotic day so far, I turned on some Christmas music and started to drive towards our destination.
The list of all the things I needed to get done that day started pouring into my mind and so did the negative thoughts….. I need a break, and that I am so frustrated and annoyed, and I can’t get anything done with the kids around….. (I didn’t say this out loud, these were just thoughts in my head.)
And then as we drove on, it hit me, Charlie out grew another pair of shoes.
My baby is 6 years old, he’s growing so fast.
He is healthy, smart, happy, and such a good boy!
I looked through the rear view mirror at their rosy, happy little faces and felt so much gratitude.
These two little angels are mine.
The good, the bad, the ugly, I have them, they are mine.
Were they sitting there thinking of our negative, hard morning?
No, they were already over it.
They were happy because they were going on an adventure with mama and they got to listen to Christmas music.
The day will come when they are grown and I won’t have any shoes to put on little feet, no one to look at in the rear view mirror as we run errands…
It’s a depressing thought and a reminder to savor every.single.moment that I have with them.
In that moment I decided to focus on the things that I am grateful for and blessed to have.
- Thankful I even get to be home with them and not have to work anymore.
- Thankful they are both healthy.
- Thankful that I have two so that they can have each other and be best friends.
- Thankful we can afford a new pair of shoes when they grow so fast.
- Like I said earlier, Thankful they are even mine.
I am one blessed mother and even though we had a rough start, it was going to be a good day, because we are healthy, we are feeling good, and we are together.
And if that isn’t enough to be grateful for, then I don’t know what is.
I don’t have the exact 100% fix it every time answer, but I have found some ways to be a little more thankful when the days feel long and hard.
Easier said than done at times, I know!
But, gratitude and thankfulness is what gets us through those times because it reminds us that there is actually more good than there is bad.
Even when it all feels bad, if you start counting your blessings, your problems will seem smaller.
Big picture: it’s going to be ok. There is always something to be thankful for.
Aren’t we blessed?
Every day ask yourself and your kids about the things you are blessed with.
Some random examples could be:
“Aren’t we blessed to have food on the table every day?”
“Aren’t we blessed to have each other?””Aren’t we blessed to have our family live so closeby so we can go to their house and play?”
Even everyday things that seem silly to us like “Aren’t we blessed to have our toys, local park, new winter boots, etc.”
Constantly point out the things in your life that are blessings.
Savor the joyful moments between the frustrating moments.
Like Charlie’s shoes are a sign of how quickly they are growing, so quickly are the moments passing.
Savor the good moments between the frustrating hard moments. You will see there are more good moments than bad ones.
Do Something Good for Someone Less Fortunate or Someone in Need.
Tis’ the season of giving but this is something we can do year round!
When you do something good for someone who needs it, you will instantly feel better.
And this doesn’t always mean giving money to a family in need, volunteering at a homeless shelter,etc.
It could be making a meal for a friend that just had a baby and needs help.
Offering to babysit your friends kids for a couple of hours when you know she’s had her own rough day.
Visiting someone who you know is lonely, new in town, and maybe doesn’t have a lot of friends or inviting them into your circle.
Those are just a few ideas, but I am sure you can think of simple and practical ways to help people you know!
We are blessed to be a blessing.
Comparison is the Thief of Joy.
Don’t compare your life to someone else or what you see on social media.
Most people are private about the hard or negative parts of their life.
When you start thinking everyone’s life seems better than yours, you will become very unhappy.
Just remember, there is not one person on this earth that isn’t struggling with something (big or small), and we are all in it together.
Focus on your own blessings, not the blessings of others.
There will always be someone who is wealthier than you, has a bigger house than you, goes on vacation more than you, etc.
Be the best you can be with what you have and be thankful.
Because just like there will always be someone that has more than you, there will always be someone that has less than you.
Do the Best You Can and Be OK with it.
There are days where your heart is so full of love, and everything goes as planned and you think – gosh life is so good and perfect and I’m so happy!
Then there are the days where it’s hard, frustrating, and you want to just run away somewhere and hide until it passes.
Just remember, no matter what kind of day you are having, we all have them too. It is was makes us human.
But even in our highs and in our lows, we have things to be grateful for.
Just remember you can’t appreciate the sun without the rain.
Happy Thanksgiving friends!
Let’s focus on our blessings this seasons and remember, we are blessed to be a blessing to others!