As many of you may remember, I have a ridiculous obsession with lists. In fact, on top of my binders full of various to-do lists, I keep a daily have-done list in my journal.
Every now and then as I go about my day I think about all the things that don’t get written down in my “have-done” list. Today, I thought I’d take a moment to acknowledge all the things that never seem big enough to bother keeping track of.
- Gave my daughter 6 sippy cups full of chocolate milk. Yes, I know it’s added sugar and calories and that it should probably be a special treat instead of a go-to beverage, but it makes her happy and a non-screaming toddler makes mama happy.
- Tried to get my daughter to use the potty approximately 900 times…without any success.
- Gave my daughter 8 million snacks. Seriously, I don’t understand how such a tiny human can have such a big appetite!
- Cleaned up approximately 7 thousand spills. I’m not sure how it happens, but somehow there’s a new mess to clean up every five minutes or so.
- Refolded the same pile of laundry 4 times. For some reason, my daughter loves to knock over the stacks of freshly folded clothes and watch me re-do them.
- Hid in the bathroom to squeeze in a few moments of sanity (at least twice). I don’t know why I continue to attempt this. It almost never works.
- Made two runs to the grocery store after realizing I forgot milk. Again. I wish someone would have warned me that “new mom brain” never really goes away.
- Switched out the Disney DVDs that are always droning on in the background (at least 6 times). Whatever allows me to get some housework done, right?
- Read “Green Eggs and Ham” no less than 7 times. I really need to hide this one and get her hooked on a new book. Also, has anyone else noticed that the message of the book is less “try new things” and more “give in to shut up incessant nagging”?
- Gave at least 20 piggy back rides. I don’t know why this is my child’s preferred mode of transport, but I’m sure it’s a good workout for mom.
I’m sure I could stretch this list out to include a hundred or more little things that I do–many of them repetitively–throughout the day, but I think you get the point. What’s crazy to me is I look at this list and I know that many days this is on top of several loads of laundry, dishes, cooking 3 meals, messing with this here blog, and so much more!
The other thing that sticks out to me is that there are many, many nights where I plop myself on the couch and I look at my short have-done list, feeling like I’ve accomplished nothing, yet my body is screaming at me to get some rest. It is in these moments that I wonder, “Why am I so tired? I didn’t do anything today!”
But I have. I’ve done a lot. I just don’t give myself credit for it.
So, my fellow tired moms (and dads!), I issue you this challenge: really look at what you’ve done with your day. Allow yourself to acknowledge all those little tasks and feel accomplished. You’ve spent your day taking care of your child, as well as dealing with all the other tasks life throws at us. You’ve done a lot today! Take a moment to bask in that glory, and then do something to recharge your batteries. Read a chapter of that book, play that video game for a few minutes, call that friend–whatever it is that you’d like to do–and then get some of that sweet, sweet sleep.