Real-Mom Resolutions

It’s that time of year, people. The time when if I were still working for a health web site I’d be crafting headlines like “New Year, New You” and “Be a 10 in 2010!” The time of year when regular gym-goers curse the well-intentioned hordes that inevitably descend on the Stairmasters. Until March, when the gym empties out again.

Well, this year I’ve decided to make REAL resolutions. You know, ones I actually WANT to achieve and maybe have a real shot at? Here goes:

Leave my children alone. What? You were expecting me to say spend more time with my kids? I already spend nearly every waking hour with them, people, and some of the sleeping ones! And I can’t be the only one who’s noticed that our offspring often behave better when Mom’s not breathing down their necks.

Case in point: Riley will be happily playing in the Exersaucer -- until he catches sight of me. Then it’s nonstop screaming and whining until I spring him loose. Similarly, Miles will amuse himself quite nicely with a book or toy in the next room, then when I walk in he’ll suddenly start acting up.

Eat more. That’s right, no carrot sticks and crash diets here. Don’t you remember, I have a built-in diet and exercise program? Besides, as an astute commenter once pointed out, mommy meltdowns are frequently caused by the all-coffee diet. You’re so busy attending to everyone else’s needs, you don’t take time to meet your own, such as food. That means protein, people, not cookies or the crusts of your kid’s PB&J!

Be nicer to my husband. This list just continues to shock and confuse, doesn’t it? I KNOW, me too!! But now that I’m (sometimes) getting a full night’s sleep and 3 meals a day, I have a new perspective. It’s easy to let civility slide when you’re in postpartum survival mode. It’s easy to snarl, “Get back to me when you’ve grown a PERSON inside your body!” when your hubby complains of a headache or a man cold.

But come on now, you’re both on the same team, right? And you must like SOMETHING about him if you made a baby with him. So I guess it won’t kill me to be a little more pleasant to C. now and then. (I just KNOW these words are going to come back to haunt me!!)

Stop sweating it. You know how sometimes someone can be inexplicably rude or mean to you? And you let it ruin your day and go over and over in your head why that person said or did that and what you did to provoke it and how you should’ve responded? Yeah, I’m going to stop doing that. It’s almost always about THEM, not YOU. Like that woman in yoga class who gave me the evil eye for putting my mat in “her” spot? Namaste, lady. You can have it.

Give myself a break. OK, this is where I get clichéd. But it’s true; I am SO much harder on myself than anyone else. Most moms I know are. So instead of focusing on the times I’ve lost my temper or fallen short of perfection, what I’m NOT doing, what I SHOULD be doing, and how I could be doing everything better, I’m going to try to give myself credit for what I AM doing. Like keeping 2 children clothed, fed, and alive day after day, for starters.

What do you think? Can I keep these up? Or will I be lunching on lattés and cursing the slow old lady in front of me at the grocery store by March? And what are YOUR New Year’s Resolutions? Do tell!

P.S. O’ THE WEEK: Another resolution, which wouldn’t fit neatly into this list, is to seek out new blogs to read regularly. No letting the media pick the “top mom blogs” for me. Here’s one, for instance, about a mom-to-be who quit her reporter job and is trying to simplify her life: Little House on the Southern Prairie. Fascinating!


leila said...

I love this list. I'm so glad I found your blog, more than a year and a half ago now (my baby's almost a year old!). I'm going to try keeping up with a few items you've mentioned here, as well as my very personal one of LEARN TO DRIVE. It's impossible, I've found, to live in the suburbs of America without being able to drive. Who knew? Happy New Year!

Emily said...

thanks for the shout out!! happy new year.

Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

Kathleen@so much to say, so little time said...

This is a great list. I'm with you 100%!

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