“The great plan of happiness revealed to prophets is the plan for a happy family.
It is the love story between husband and wife, parents and children, that renews itself through the ages” (Boyd K. Packer).

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Mom the Martyr

It seems to me that it is so easy sometimes to be Mom the Martyr.  I've been struggling with that myself.  And it's completely my own fault!  It started out with me feeling sorry for my busy older girls.  And ended with me slowly absorbing all of the children's chores into my own list of things to do.  What?  I used to be SO. GOOD. at teaching and training my children to be good workers.  That was back when I homeschooled them and had complete control over their schedules and mine.  Then they started growing up.  And spending more time away from home.  And suddenly I found myself feeling guilty about asking them to do helpful things.  I also tend to speak "service" as my love language - so when my kids are stressed or worried or sad, I do their chores for them.  And then that becomes the new normal.

This week I remembered that not only is that not good for THEM, it is not good for ME!  I am getting run down and tired and stressed and having a hard time lightening up and having fun.  I'm letting my spiritual well run dry and my body get soft instead of taking care of my core needs.

I haven't figured out the nitty gritty details of what has to change, but I started by making a list of everything I might need to do in a day.  It was long.  And I realized that the kids need to help.  There are seven of them now.  All except the baby are capable of doing a LOT of the things on that list.  The rewards are sweet.  They will get a better mom, and they will learn valuable lessons and life skills.  It's also a little bit about prioritizing and letting things go.  I have to learn to do that as well.  Counters, meals, bedrooms, floors - they don't need to be perfect.

Mom the Martyr no more.  I'm stopping the pity party and ending the not-enough-hours-in-the-day feeling by letting my family do what families need to do - work together to make this house a home.