With Father’s Day around the corner, I wanted to shine a light on daddy’s role in the psychology of motherhood. We can’t escape that a woman’s role as a parent is different than a man’s role. Sometimes as moms, we see it as a blessing and a curse. Sure, we are typically the “go to” parent to find hidden rain boots, solve problems, remember dentist appointments, and bring boxes of tissue for the classroom.
But there is a point where we get so enveloped in this role that we form a concept of “it can’t get done without me”, and if daddy was left to things all hell would break loose. This can lead to hoarding tasks and eventually over extending yourself. Eventually, you are hardly getting things done and building resentment towards dad (“He has no idea what I go through” and “He wouldn’t make it a day in my shoes”).
This is counterproductive to your initial dream of “supermom” – now you are “barely hanging on mom” and “I can’t stand your father, mom”). The truth is that he can probably take care of things, but why should he when you do, or when he does, you complain or redo it yourself? Think about it , if you went to a work conference for a week, or were in the hospital with baby #2 – I’m sure he wouldn’t forget to feed, bathe, clothe, and care for his child. Let go of your daddy duty fears and allow him to help, because although he might not 'do it like mommy', your child(ren) will be okay. So what if little Jacob had dinner for breakfast and breakfast for dinner – no harm, no foul, right?
What we must remember is that Moms are awesome, and so are Dads. They are here to be our partners; which means, they can reap the benefits of our children's overflowing love as well. They might not be able to orchestrate everything the way we prefer, but just remember - the love is the same. The good intent is the same. It's the techniques that differ.
This Father’s Day, don’t just tell him thank you for being a good dad – make sure to say thank you for being my partner in crime!
Our Guest Blogger, Cherrell Thomas, is a professional counselor, licensed by the state of Georgia and certified by the national board of counselors. With over 7 years in the field, Cherrell has experience in multiple areas of mental health. Through her private practice, HELPFUL THERAPY CENTER LLC, she promotes the power of inner resiliency and encourages her clients to define their own "happy". However, she may have met her match in her three year old daughter who is teaching her everyday about life, parenting, and the struggle for sanity.
Follow along as we uncover the myths in a candid conversation, only a Mama can identify.
My husband and I made it through the first 24 months, but it's the next two years that have me concerned. Our DD began using a very, loud voice to communicate the week after her second birthday. To give you an idea:
She casually says, “Juice”. In the next five seconds, you hear it 10 more times at an unreasonable pitch, only dog owners can relate. Replace "juice" with peaches, cheese, or chicken and you have my day. Here are a few things I adjusted in my schedule to ensure I am fully energized and patient enough to handle her demands:
1. Get ample rest - I use the entire 24 hours to complete my day. I sleep when tired, and work when awake. For instance, if I’m up at 3am, I work until sunrise and take a powernap until she wakes.
2. Rise & Shine - When I’m up, I’m focused. I set tasks and deadlines on my calendar, to ensure nothing is forgotten. I also use a computer with dual screens, a tablet, laptop, and cell phone to conduct business, seven days a week. Each device is dedicated to a certain business and social media application.
3. Take breaks - Once she is awake, we have a morning, afternoon and evening routine. I sync our “dance parties” to cleaning and laundry activities. We tackle art projects, bubbles, books and outdoor play during our time to connect.
4. Assign chores - She puts her dishes away, assists with unloading the dishwasher and loading the dryer. This offers her a sense of independence and a learning directive. To date, she knows the terms wet, dry, cold and hot very well.
5. Dial in - On days that she is especially cranky, I adjust my priorities and give her attention in the form of hands-on activities. We work through tantrums one subject at a time.
I felt patience was an overrated term in my Pre-Mama days. The past 24 months have proven the definition in its most authentic form-LOVE. The love of a mother softens the heart and encourages growth. I hope to use these tools while entering year three.
What tips do you have for years 3 & 4? We are all ears!
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