Monday, June 22, 2015

How Do I Deal With "Mommy Burnout"

I am a mom for 2.2 years to be exact, you want me to tell you how the "ride" was?

Top and bottom: Gingersnaps
Shoes: Eazyfashion
Well, I'm physically tired, I'm sleepy most of the time, my body aches here and there and oh!  24 hours a day is NEVER enough!



Am I complaining?  Sometimes, but 90% of the time ---- NO.

The reason why I put up another personal post today because I want to tell you how it was for me as a first-time mom.  This post is in NO WAY a lecture on how to be a good mom!  This post is just plain Nikki (stripped off from all the glamour --- if there's any hahaha)  sharing how I survived 2.2 years of motherhood and how I plan to survive the coming years.

I got inspired to write this post last year but didn't get around to sit down and collect my thoughts.  (because my thoughts are always messy and green! hahaha)  Once we had a reunion with good friends and I didn't have househelp back then, instead of the usual "talkative" and "machikka" Nikki, I was up and running chasing after my son, playing with him and of course, feeding him as I get in and out of the adult conversion.  One of my good friend said as I was leaving: "Oh, we didn't get the chance to bond!  You were too busy!  If both of you guys will continue to do this, you'll get burned out!"

Don't worry, I didn't get offended (it will take a whole lot of effort for you to offend me by the way!) but I went home thinking, Burnout --- am I experiencing that?

So I went to my "Google-A-friend" a.k.a. just GOOGLE and searched about "Mommy Burnout".  And the results came in WOW!  I mean seriously, WOW!  There are hundreds of articles about Mommy Burnout or Motherhood Burnout so indeed, a lot of moms are experiencing this!  So I must be experiencing one too right?  How to know?  I went ahead to answer some of the questions from this one article ---  (source)

Do you feel irritated, annoyed or stressed most days? - just once a week or twice max.
Do you find yourself snapping at your children, partner/spouse, friends or co-workers? - no
Do you feel exhausted most days regardless of how much rest and sleep you get? - With a cup coffee, an iced cold drink, a milk or a scented candle, I can actually save the world! (with a flair!)
Have you lost interest in doing activities you once enjoyed? - no
Do you have difficulty taking care of your children and find their needs overwhelming? - no
Do you believe you have to be perfect? - Of course not! 


So based on my answers, I am not suffering Mommy Burnout but why was that term coined to me when my friends see me?

Probably because ----
  • When I'm with my son, I always go barefaced look so they see all my bags (I wish I can say Balenciaga bags but I  meant the bags below my eyes).
  • My hair and clothes are disheveled and probably, my bra straps are peeking through and I don't seem to care!
  • I can't seem to complete a story without getting distracted from my son.  Or go: "STOP KYLE!" mid-sentence.
  • I can't seem to eat properly as I tend to my son's dinner more than myself. 
But then, I realized....my friends, who are in no way trying to judge me and I understand their concern, are actually worried that I may "dislike" my job as a mom!  That's why they are constantly giving me pieces of advice on how to chill and stop myself from being too clingy from my son.  They have the right, they have more kids than I do and they are doing a great job!

As I sit back and re-assess my situation, I realized that  I actually LOVE being with my son!  It is not the fact that I don't have yaya (now I do and she's turning into a house maid than babysitter), it is the fact that I choose to be around my son and I actually missed him a lot when I'm away from him!  I realized that I've always been like that to my parents, to my then-boyfriend Keith and now to my son.  I like showing my love, I love being with the people I love and I like taking care of the people I love!  That's how I am, and I can't seem to change that.

I used to think it is because of the fact that I waited for my son's existence for years.  I went through workups, horrible medications just to get pregnant.  So maybe, that's the reason why I am who I am now.  But you know what?  Even if I get a second, third, fourth or fifth child, I will still be this way!  It is in my DNA to want to take care of somebody, it is in my DNA to want to see my son grow, I want to see him make mistakes, correct him and make sure he learns from it, I want to be there when he cries and give him my biggest bear hug! I will probably still be there to help him look after his son or daughter if he wanted me to! 

I WANT IT!  It's not that I don't have a choice, I want it and I don't judge moms who can be away from their kids because that is how they are!  Like what I said to my fellow mommy friend:  "To each their own!"  We all have our ways to parenting and this is MY style and it is MY choice.  

Truth be told, there are days my body gets sick and I felt what exhaustion really feels like!  Yes, I'm going to say this, there are days I just wish I can just stop thinking about being a mommy and tend to myself.  So yeah, I'm not perfect you know!  But I have my ways, ways that work for me to deal with sudden burst of ...okay, I may as well use the term --- "burnout".

And these are just some of the many ways I cope, and stay sane.

We just chill!  As much as I would want to watch Kyle with eagle eyes on his every move, I chill and just enjoy the company of people around me.  We catch up on each other's day and share stories as our son roam around the house and explore on his own.  And yes, he has his fair share of "Bukols", it broke my heart but I know it will happen!

P.S. that's not my underwear!  I'm wearing a skort! :P

We ask for assistance.  Thankfully, I have the best parents-in-law!  They help take care of my son when I'm away for work!



I also seek help from daddy.  There are a lot of times I go: "Dad, he's so heavy, help!!!"  Or "Dad, I'm soooo tired I need your help watching him as I take a quick nap!"  and the most common line: "Dad, can you help me look after Kyle so I can blog?" < --- Blogging gives me so much relaxation!

I am so lucky my husband is so helpful and also hands-on when it comes to looking after my son.  We are on the same wavelength and I believe that's how it is when it comes to parenting.   Both you and your husband should be on the same parenting style and life is really easier that way!

It doesn't hurt we're both childish!  Este, child-like pala! :D

I still do the things I love to do.
I am still blogging because I find that my "personal space" I don't want to strip away from me.  And to those who don't know me outside this cyber world --- I love cooking (Check out AMW Cooks posts), I love riding a bike, I enjoy teaching makeup and prettifying other people.  I like doing so many things like teaching --- so yes, Kyle has his own personal tutor!

Those activities may sound tiring to you but it is the best form of relaxation for me!


We go out on dates as TRIO.  Not TRIAD but a Trio #lol
I know most parents have "date night" or "date day".  We have that once in awhile.  But we appreciate going out on a date more with our son!  We don't feel the need to go out on a date as acouple because we've done that from 1997-2013!  That's 16 years!!! So we've managed to do everything we wanted to do as a couple before so now, we welcome going out on dates with a cute third wheel.



When we go out, we usually do so without a "yaya" because again, that is our choice. My weapon is, I take a backpack of his favorite toys and an iPad.  (I can hear gasps out there.)  YES, I let him enjoy the wonders of iPad games and apps because he likes it and that is our way of teaching him how you can use an iPad for an hour max and not go crazy when we take that away!

My trick:  I let him play with his favorite toys before meal, once the food arrives, I bring out my iPad with all kid-safe apps and games.  That will be the perfect time for Mr. AMW and I to enjoy our dates, enjoy our food as I also whip out my mobile phone to get updated on Social Media.



I know this may sound like an advertisement but another trick is to apply for a good internet plan.  Having a good internet plan goes a long way!   You know how it is when you're out and you want to do some research on restaurants?  If you want to show grandma and grandma how Kyle is having a great time playing inside a toy store?  Or if you want to update the Aunts and Uncles abroad with photos of your family?  Finding for an internet connection is malls or restaurants could be a pain, just like looking for high chair!  So  I'm glad I have my own internet plan and I'm lucky to be a Smart Ambassador.

As my son gets entertained with his educational games, Mr. AMW checks his Viber for conversations and updates between him and his colleagues while I go ahead and do my Blogger duties by updating my Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!  That is me I'm living a #SmartLife, that is me getting sane from all the craziness!  Don't worry though, after a couple of minutes we get back to having a good conversation!



Now since we're on the topic of going out, I also make suret to dress him in comfortable clothes.  Nothing beats having a toddler uncomfortable with his clothing!  I make sure he wears comfortable clothes and shoes!  He perspires a lot so I always bring extra shirts that are easy to change! It would be a big help if you pick 1 clothing piece that he likes a lot!  As for Kyle, he loves his Batman and Spiderman shoes so I always bring that to give him the mood to explore and walk.

Batman shoes from Eazyfashion.


Be child-like around him.
When you're inside a toy store and play area, why would you NOT play with him?  I am thankful when I get the chance to play around with new and modern toys because I always say: "We don't have that during our time!" 


Sit back and watch him enjoy!  Don't be a worrywart because you will miss all the good stuff!
Check out that cute expression! 

At the end of the day, love yourself!  Whenever I feel down, I always look at my son and give myself a virtual pat on the back for a great job raising him!  And thank your husband for staying with you all through this crazy stage of motherhood!  Nothing beats a happy mom and dad to have a happy baby!


So after reading this, when you chanced upon me with my family outside looking "Haggard", please, don't pity me, because I may look like I was ran over by a truck physically, deep inside --- I have the happiest and fullest heart! 

Fellow mommies, how do you deal with Mommy Burnout?


Keep smilin'
Stay happy!
 

12 comments :

  1. Mini me mo talaga si Kyle! He's so lucky to have you as a mom! :D

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  2. This is what I need to realize that I should also give myself a credit for raising my child in my own imperfect yet full of love ways. Thanks Ms. Nikki! Truly inspiring.

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    1. I'm glad to be a reminder! You go girl!!!

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  3. Very inspirational blog. I can relate on how you feel as a mom of almost 2 year old boy too. At least, I know I'm doing the right thing in raising my child. Keep it up Ms. Nikki! :P

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    1. naku sis, for me there's no right or wrong in taking care of our kids, as long as it felt right for you, and your kid is happy, you know you're doing a great job!

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  4. You're a good mom Nikki! I think I also told one of my friends a few months back, "Hey, never let go of yourself." And now I understand why she can't take her eyes off her child. Babies are so adorable and they grow up too fast, moms don't want to miss a single moment. Sending you lots of love, Lainey

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    1. thank you Lainey! :) And I can't wait for you to be a mom na!

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  5. I'm experiencing mommy burn-out. Burn-out literally. I want to escape Nikki. Hay buti ka pa. :(

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    1. awww..relax lang..take a day off or something sis.

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  6. Hi Nikki! Time spent with your child is one of the most wonderful times with them. I can relate with how you feel because I'm also a first time mom..thinking of leaving my job and raise my own child. But of course, I didn't although I want to. How nice of you that you get to enjoy every single moment with your son!

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    1. Hi First time mommy! High Five! We're all doing a great job!!! I actually did not leave my job but I added more tasks pa! Since turning into a mom, I believe I am now at my "peak" , doing everything at the best of my ability at the shortest time possible! :D HUGS ! Let's enjoy this ride!

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