I wish I could be this carefree every day. I’m typically a tightly wound ball of stress, but lately I’ve been really trying to focus on being present and finding ways to manage my social anxiety. I have two very outgoing children who love to be outside and they have a mom who likes nothing more than to be a loner and never leave the house unless absolutely necessary.
Because I know that my children are very social and I want to encourage that, I have been forcing myself to get out of the house and do things with them daily. Each year I get better and better at shimmying out of my comfort zone and this year has been really great because of the extra effort. I also allow myself to keep some of my loner tendencies, therefore I have incorporated some different activities that we can do in the house that way I don’t have to be outside 24/7.
The main thing that I’ve been doing with my kids is walking. We go for little mommy and me walks which I implemented after reading Unlikely Martha‘s post about fall walks. I also started walking my son to school daily. This is big for me because I’m not a morning person and I usually try to avoid people (strangers) at all costs in the morning so I would normally drive my son to school even though it’s a five-minute walk. Now, I just tough it out and I’ve been actually enjoying it. We get up, we go outside and we walk to school. On our way back home, my daughter and I race each other. I don’t really run but I fast walk and it still entertains her because she stays beating me. Sidenote: I only run if someone or something is chasing me because I hate running.
For my son, we build with Legos. Now all three of us will build them but this is really his thing. He opens up and he talks to me about his day and what’s going on at school. He gets super focused and I can see how happy he is to spend that quality time with me. Also, since he thinks he’s the Lego Master, he enjoys being the expert at something and it gives him a lot of pride to explain things to me and to help me find pieces and put things together.
For more outdoor/extra activities, I’ve put my daughter back into dance and gymnastics and my son into piano and soccer so they get to have activities where they can be outside or around other people but I don’t have to be the constant and they can socialize with kids outside of a school environment.
These little things have really helped me get to know my kids more and see their individuality come out. It has also gotten me to open up to other people and I actually started talking to some of the other parents. Go me! Although I will always like being by myself and chilling in the house, I have found more happiness getting out and being active with my kids.
Life is too short to be so stressed out so I hope you all are taking time out to take care of yourselves and have fun with your babies! I’m not carefree, but I am chasing the light and finding my happiness.