I am so grateful for my children, but let’s be honest: parenting can test our patience, organizational skills, and if you’re like me, an innate need to control everything. I have noticed that as a busy working mom of two, I often feel overwhelmed, struggling to get everything done. I am never able to sit still and be in the moment. I am too busy worrying about laundry, school lunches, work emails, and scheduling playdates.
I hadn’t realized how bad this had become until my husband and I took our first baby-free vacation in 5 years (woohoo!) and spent the entire first day making a significant effort not to plan every minute of the day. It actually took a conscious effort to relax and enjoy having nothing to do! I couldn’t believe it! While the trip was so wonderful, it made me realize that I really needed to work on living more in the moment.
Ever since that trip, I have become more aware of my inability to relax and be present. The sad thing is I know this affects my kids. I acknowledge that I am not always fully present with them, because I find myself fighting the urge to review my endless to do list, check my email, or update social media. Even with my husband, I let other things take priority, mindless things like checking bank accounts or writing online reviews, rather than focusing on what should be most important, engaging with him.
But luckily something amazing happened recently with my youngest one. She is straddling toddler-hood, still taking sweet naps, first steps and first words, but also is becoming fiercely independent and seeming to need me less and less.
(Originally published on San Francisco Mom’s Blog April 4, 2016)