In a parenting funk

This week has been funky. And not in a good way.

I blame the time change, but then I think it’s more than that.

We’re busy. The mornings are rushed. Afternoons crammed. Dinnertime haphazard. Bedtime a struggle.

It’s a parenting funk.

I miss my kids.

We’re a bit disconnected and this leaves us all feeling a bit frustrated, sad, and discontent.

It’s probably why I tend to linger at bedtime and acquiesce to their pleas for more snuggles, more books…until I ultimately fall asleep right alongside them.

This balancing act we do…between our kids, our spouses, our work, and our passions? Not easy, is it?

The one thing I don’t want to ever take for granted…time with my kids.

And yet every single day, I find myself saying…not right now, I need to work/make dinner/clean up.

I worry one day they’ll stop asking for me…and then what?

I’ll regret. I’ll regret the time I poured over my writing, the time spent at my computer, the time spent cleaning when all they wanted was time with me.

That’s the funk I’m in.

I read this today. It was exactly what I needed to read. To know there were simple things I could do on a daily basis to increase that connection to my kids. To make us all feel better. Feel loved. Feel heard. Feel seen.

Even when the minutes in the day seem scarce.

So, this is what I’m going to do…

I’m going to hug Big Brother and Little Sister every chance I get. Everyday. Multiple times a day.

I’m going to pause before snapping back with impatience, and instead listen and see my children.

I’m going to ignore the household clutter, the dirty floors, and dishes in the sink…at least long enough to engage in a round of Lego building with Big Brother and craft time with Little Sister.

Because this is life. It’s busy. It’s chaotic. And I don’t get a do-over.

Time to shake off this funk and get back on track.

Plus? Look at these Shamrock Shakes! We are definitely making these today…and I’m saying good-bye to this parenting funk and hello to a fun, family weekend.

We need it.

What do you do when you get into a parenting funk? Any fun plans for the weekend? Are you going to make a Shamrock Shake?

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18 Responses to In a parenting funk
  1. Adriel
    March 16, 2012 | 5:31 am

    oh, this is so true! i’ve been thinking a lot about the “little things” in my parenting lately and questioning what am i really communicating through my behavior and responses. i just wrote and deleted a massive comment here, because i thought i should just put it in a post of my own instead of going on and on in your comments. (i’ll link back here.) but the gist of it is my new goal to be present and engaged during levi’s (long, drawn-out) meal times. that means, no popping up and down for laundry change-overs, pulling out the phone, or zooming off to bang out a few emails… but old habits die hard. i’m working on it.

    • Melissa
      March 22, 2012 | 10:34 pm

      This is true for me, Adriel. Old habits do die hard. I’m trying to do better. I’m doing my darnedest to at the very least protect our weekends as family space only. XO

  2. Lisa
    March 16, 2012 | 1:56 pm

    This is exactly how I feel at the end of the day. Thank you for not letting me feel like the only one.

  3. Paula @ Simply Sandwich
    March 16, 2012 | 2:05 pm

    I think parenting funk is pretty common for all moms! I am glad you figured this out early because I know first hand how it feels when they leave for college and the regret is so hard to overcome! Have a great weekend Melissa! :)

    • Melissa
      March 22, 2012 | 10:35 pm

      Thank you Paula.

  4. jen
    March 16, 2012 | 2:33 pm

    I am in a serious rut. you have described exactly what i am feeling – exactly! it just so happens that my hubby is away for the weekend and left this afternoon. and my kids are having a sleepover with the grandparents. i have 26 hours of just me time. most of it will be spent cleaning but i am excited to sew and craft and just waste time on pinterest! thank you for reminding me that i’m not the only parent that goes through this.

    • Melissa
      March 22, 2012 | 10:36 pm

      I hope you enjoyed your quiet time. Honestly, isn’t that all we need sometimes to recharge and see things from a fresh perspective? And…oh…pinterest is addicting. :)

  5. Ana
    March 16, 2012 | 2:38 pm

    It feels so good to read this and know that as Moms we ALL resonate these same feelings. What a blessing that it landed in my timeline somehow and I found your blog. Today of all days when I cried on the way to work because my baby cried as he pressed his face up against the screen door and peered out at me through the rain when I dashed out of daycare. =( Thank you for expressing my struggle and my pain so eloquently! =)

    • Melissa
      March 22, 2012 | 10:38 pm

      Oh…so sorry about your morning. It’s heartbreaking for us moms when we have to leave and all we can feel is guilt. I hope the rest of your day went well. I’m sure once you and your baby were reunited…all was right with the world :)

  6. Suzi
    March 16, 2012 | 3:00 pm

    I’m glad I’m not alone. Now you’ll have to excuse me… I have to go hug my son 😀

  7. Suzi
    March 16, 2012 | 3:01 pm

    I’m glad I’m not alone… now you’ll have to excuse me, I have to go hug my son 😀

  8. Olivia
    March 16, 2012 | 4:53 pm

    I’m a fairly new mom (my son is only 9 months), but I ran across an article not long ago I thought had some good ideas. Each day, set aside certain periods/amounts of time dedicated to certain persons or tasks. About 10 minutes before that time is up, remind the kids the time is almost up, and what the next activity will be. For example, during Big Brother’s time (basically he gets to choose the activity), you say, “Ok guys, Big Brother has 10 more minutes, and then it’s Little Sister’s time”. Then when Little Sister’s time comes to an end, you say “Ok, 5 more minutes and then mommy has to clean for x amount of time.” That way everyone gets some time, no one feels cheated, and (hopefully) things don’t get overlooked. You just keep rotating this schedule.

    I’m sure it’s easier said than done, but it’s definitely something I’m going to try as my son gets older. We also have a rule in our house that during meal times phones go into a basket and are silenced so we’re not tempted by them.

    • Melissa
      March 22, 2012 | 10:43 pm

      I love that Olivia. My kids are actually very attune to and want to know..”how much longer” and “how much time do we have?” So this is great advice! I’ve started using timers, so everyone knows what comes next. It’s good for me too…so I’m not constantly more minute…for 30 minutes!

  9. Winterwednesday
    March 16, 2012 | 5:20 pm

    Thank you so much for this! I can be stuck in this for weeks at a time and it really does my head in! It’s amazing how just by reading something that someone else has written seems so common sense that we think, ‘why didn’t I think of that?’ . That is the power of words and writing. And that is why we all write I think, to help ourselves and others. You’ve definitely helped me today!

    • Melissa
      March 22, 2012 | 10:45 pm

      I’m so glad. I’m amazed by the response. Honestly, when I sat down to write this…I thought, “who wants to hear this?” “why am I publishing this?” “this isn’t helpful” But…in the end…I just wanted to be honest and share what I was going through. Good to know I’m not alone either. It really does help to know we aren’t alone in our struggles. :)

  10. Christa the BabbyMama
    March 16, 2012 | 6:03 pm

    I have been snappy like a gator recently, but I do have a couple of excuses. Still, it’s no fun to realize that you’re being no fun. Today, I must have said “Don’t…” about a 100 times. I finally apologized to the P. for there being so many don’ts and not enough dos. It’s hard to remember to be fun and engaged sometimes, though.

  11. Lauralee
    March 18, 2012 | 7:22 am

    Yep, I just got out of one. I was overwhelmed and felt like I was not seeing my kids very much. As I sit here on the couch now, snuggling, I look over and see my undusted and living room. Sigh. I can only do so much, and spending time with my babies needs to be it.

  12. […] In fact, I’ve been very candid about my parenting mishaps. Take a look here and here. Oh, and here […]