The Dawleys

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Balance

One aspect of Attachment Parenting that I struggle with most is balance. Everything I read, tells me to remember to take time for myself because this style of parenting causes me to give so much and it's important to not get burnt out. But no matter how one parents, or whether one has children or not, we all struggle with balance. We all have good days and bad days, days where we're more patient and kind, days where we overreact and snap too quickly at our loved ones, days where we are pulled too much in one direction, and those wonderful days where everything seems just as it should be. We all need balance.
I am someone that places a lot of pressure on myself. I strive to be as present as possible with Ella at all times. I try to plan menus with the most optimal nutrition possible and stress more than I should when Ella picks over the most nutritious parts of her meals. I try to keep the house clean (using only the greenest cleaners) and clutter free (which is so hard with a one year-old and our 4 month-old weekday friend). My Type A personality causes me to stress out when things are not in order.
With these types of expectations of myself, it is hard to stay balanced. Lately it has been even harder than normal. Dave has worked the past three weekends (on top of his 5 days during the week). He has had to work late 2-3 nights a week as well. This leaves me to do dinner, dishes, bathtime, bedtime, and end-of-the-day cleanup all to myself (although he is wonderful and helps out wherever he can when he gets home). This after long days of giving as much positive and patient attention as possible to my sweet and spunky little girl and to our little weekday friend. The giving lasts all day with no break, and none of the giving is to myself.
On top of this I am stressing about getting the house in order this week for family coming to visit. And this magnifies my need for perfection.
Needless to say, I am feeling very off-balance lately. I never seem to have a moment to myself. Even my rare free time is spent doing things such as Googling better ways to deal with the ammonia smell in our cloth diapers, meal planning, or reading books on positive, gentle discipline and vegan family cooking.
So this week, in the midst of the stress that I will no doubt put on myself, I am going to make sure I devote some time in the day to myself. Time just for me. Not for Dave or Ella or our dogs. Just me. It's not going to be easy for me, but I know I have to do it. I am in desperate need of recharging!

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