5 Feelings Every Mom Goes Through During the Summer and How to Cope
The best time of year for kids is sometimes one of the most overwhelming for moms. You veteran moms know what I’m talking about: summer break. The time when kids celebrate their freedom from school by saying, “I’m bored, Mom!” every five minutes. When you still have work to do but less time to do it. Even if your kids are older or you homeschool, summer is still a different game, with different daylight hours and different expectations.
So how does a mom stay grounded during summer break and still have time to get everything done (including personal time with the Lord — because we know that is key to staying sane!)? Here are five feelings you’ll probably have, along with how to deal with each one.
“What will I do with the kids for two. Straight. Months?!”
Have a plan. Sit down with your kids and make a summer bucket list. Include things that they can do on their own (Wash the car! Go bug hunting!), as well as things you can do as a family. For your own heart, think ahead to what daily joys you will choose. It will be easier to find gratitude in the hectic moments if you’ve put some thought into it ahead of time.
“I just need to crawl back under the covers.”
Give yourself some grace. Yes, it will be hard. God promises that He’ll work all things for our good, but He doesn’t promise that life will be easy. Some days, all we can do is sneak into the bathroom, cry for a few minutes, and say, “God, please give me strength to make it to bedtime!” And that’s OK.
“If I have to open one more Freezepop…”
If you find yourself continually doing things that your kids could learn how to do, take a few moments to teach them. This could be a weekly tradition or something you plan for at the beginning of the summer. Put a sturdy stepstool in the kitchen near the cereal and bowls. Assemble a craft bin the kids are allowed to use whenever they like. Make a chart for whose turn it is to fold laundry. Empower your kids to help care for themselves — it’ll be work for you up front, but you’ll also be preparing them to be competent, aware adults!
“I feel like all I do is say, ‘No.’”
Create a “YES!” Only Day. Make it a Saturday or another day when you can turn off your work brain and just enjoy time doing all the things that make summer break wonderful: spontaneous trips to the pool or zoo, a stop for ice cream on the way home, a hike to your family’s favorite lookout. Just like God loves giving good gifts to us, we are wired to love giving good gifts to our children, and a “YES!” Only Day gives you the chance to focus on your love for your kids.
“I just. Need. Some. Time.”
Sometimes, we feel as moms that we have to spend all our kids’ waking hours with them. We want to make the most of every moment, teaching them about love and kindness and Jesus. We want to connect with them and help them grow. But sometimes we can best do that by letting them be bored. Give them the option between a rake and some mulch or sidewalk chalk or reading in their rooms. As they learn to entertain themselves, they’ll give you time to recharge for the all the time you will be spending with them!