I know you read that headline and scoffed, it is hard taking care of yourself when you’re a mom! I have trouble myself finding the time to schedule appointments for myself versus taking my kids to the doctor and therapies. I always put myself on the back burner and I can’t do that anymore. I am not getting any younger and I need to be the best me for my family. I’ve always come to realize that my chronic illness (will be sharing that on another post) isn’t going anywhere and I need to take care of it before it gets worse.
I took a little longer in the shower today…
I woke up exhausted and miserable today, the pollen here in North Carolina is horrendous. I didn’t have the energy to do anything but I did need to shower. I turned on the TV, powered on the Firestick, quickly clicked through the menu to STARZ, and came across Frozen—yup he likes it just as much as his older brother did.
We all have stress…
Yes, we all do. We can all have stress with work, with your home, your relationship, your children, friends, money, etc. My stress stems from caring for two boys: a 17 month old special needs and a 5 year old. My husband being away for majority of the year. Starting our PPM (moving ourselves) for our PCS move — we are relocating to North Carolina. Purging most of our stuff for the move, scrubbing, and cleaning for our move out of our rental home. Waiting to hear if we got the house we put an offer on. I am a full-time student online at Ultimate Medical Academy for Medical Billing and Coding. As you can see there is A LOT this mom is stressing about.
How do you do it? How do you cope? Don’t get me wrong there are days that I just want to crawl under a blanket and do nothing — but I can’t. I have two little humans depending on me and my husband depending on me to make our PCS as smooth as possible. I wanted to write about some of the ways I deal with stress on a day to day basis.
|Blogging is therapeutic|
Blogging in itself can be stressful with all of the technology, templates, domains, and followers but I find it super relaxing. I started blogging back in June to help raise awareness about Jaxson and his rare condition, DYRK1A. There isn’t a whole lot of information about it because it’s so new in the genetic world. I wanted to write about our journey in hopes to reach someone who is going through the same struggles as us. Even if it helps only one person, that’s enough for me. I also wanted to blog about Jaxson and our family to help raise awareness on Rare Chromosome Disorders. It is important to raise awareness in hopes to get the funding and care they all need.
I found that doing this was very therapeutic as well. I am writing and getting all of my emotions out, like a journal. I didn’t think writing my feelings whether happy or sad would benefit me but I was wrong. If you’re feeling stressed I would definitely recommend writing in either a journal or on a blog.
|Family stroll — Jaxson is napping|
I know what you’re thinking. Exercise? Really? You’re already stressed out and crunched for time, how could you possibly fit it in? Prior to having children I use to work out about 1.5 to 2 hours a day for maybe 5 to 6 days a week. Now I’m lucky to get that 30-45 minutes for a work out so I began doing Crossfit type workouts, or WODs, stretching/yoga, and/or walking.. ANYTHING to get 30 minutes of extracurricular activity in. After I exercise I always feel energized and ready to go, but when I didn’t work out for a few days I can definitely feel it. I felt tired all the time, moody, and stressed out.
According to Anxiety and Depression Association of America, “Scientists have found that regular participation in aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem. Even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects (Physical Activity Reduces Stress, 2018).”
Or like Elle Woods says…
So tighten up them sneakers and get out there!
|Daycare or Respite Care is fantastic!|
I’ve been fortunate enough to qualify for Respite Care because of Jaxson’s EFMP level of need through the USMC. I qualify for 20 hours of Respite Care a month and I’m so thankful for that. It has helped me catch up on my reading for school work and to allow some “me time” as well. Even if you don’t qualify for Respite Care, talk to a friend or family member and see if they can give you some assistance for a couple hours. It is important to have you time.
|Support is important|
I was fortunate enough to find a support page for Jaxson’s rare diagnosis the first day we got the call. It was great knowing we weren’t alone with this journey, and we have our own small tribe of friends and family in our corner. They helped with questions our geneticist couldn’t answer and gave us an idea of where and how Jaxson will be from years to come.
There are support pages for military spouses on Facebook as well, if you have questions regarding a PCS move, daycare questions, jobs, anything and everything they’re there to help in anyway they can!
What I’m trying to say to fellow military spouses and special needs parents, take care of yourself. Go out there and run, go grab a coffee with a friend, talk to a specialist, DO SOMETHING! You can’t except to take care of your littles if you’re too stressed out.