Are you a mom? Do you often feel like you are losing your mind? If you are, let’s just say…I feel you. Being a mom is awesome, but it also has its moments. Kids can be kind of crazy and couple that with a lack of sleep and well…you lose your mind.
This post is both for moms and those who love moms. I think it is important for those who have a special mom in their life to know exactly what they can do to help preserve mom’s sanity. What little she may have left, that is.
3 Warning Signs Mom is Going to Lose Her Mind
For kids and the significant others of moms, do you know when Mom is going to lose her mind? Have you figured out the warning signs? If you have not, please pay attention. If you can become attuned to these warning signs, you may just prevent a full-on mom meltdown.
1. You see a vein begin to pulsate.
I don’t know where your mom vein is, but mine is right in the middle of my forehead. My husband calls this vein my “flux capacitor” like my stress is now traveling through my body at 88 miles per hour. When this vein starts to pulsate, my head may just spin off my body and go Back to the Future.
Take a look at mom. Do you see any veins starting to pulsate? Check her face and neck. These are the one most likely to start throbbing first. You see her flux capacitor start to flux and you back away. Slowly. Just turn on your heels and go.
2. Mom closes her eyes.
Allow me to be clear. There is a difference between mom closing her eyes because she is plum tuckered out and closing her eyes because she is about to lose it. In this instance, she is closing her eyes because she is desperately trying to imagine she is on a deserted island with a cocktail in hand.
A word of advice, allow mom to indulge in this reverie. If she opens her eyes and sees a person (big or little) asking a question they already know the answer to or begging for something they should not have, she will lose it. It will not be pretty.
3. She takes a deep breath.
If you miss the visual clues above, please heed the auditory clue. Mom will inhale sharply and let out a long, deep sigh. This is not a sigh of contentment. You hear mom take a deep breath, it is most likely you will not like the words that follow. The words will most likely start with the word, “No” and be followed by a rant that you may not be able to walk away from.
If you hear mom take that sharp inhale, you have one of two options. Wait patiently for her to finish her rant. Do not interrupt, whatever you do. Your second option is to run and take cover. If you choose the second option, you need to do it before she starts talking. When the rant begins, do not run, hide, speak, or blink. Just listen. You may learn even learn something!
For Moms: What to Do When You Start Losing Your Mind
1. Take a deep breath.
On the outside, it may look like the sharp intake of breath means you are about to blow. However, on the inside, you should be working to calm yourself. When my toddler is having a meltdown, I tell her to take a “calm down breath”. You know what? It totally works on moms!
Take a deep breath and count to three. Keep counting if you need to. Focus on your breath. Your child or significant other is probably not trying to intentionally drive you crazy, although it may sometimes seem otherwise. If you want to make your point, you must be calm in order to be “heard”. You want them to listen, not shout, “Thar she blows!”
2. Take a break.
You know when your child comes up to you when you are completely immersed in a task and starts tugging on your shirt? Then, begins the “Mom? Mom? Mom? Mama? Mom? Ma! Mama! Mommy! Mom!” chant. I bet even reading that gets your blood boiling. It is enough to make my hair turn straight.
Most likely there is a tiny human tugging and chanting because they just want your attention. If you can take a break from the task at hand to give them the attention they crave, if only briefly, it may save you from losing it. Stop what you are doing, get down on their level, make complete eye contact, and explain what you are doing and that you will help them as soon as they can.
Taking a break can also mean that you may just need to walk away. I am personally not a yeller. Yelling makes me shut down and I suspect it would do the same to my daughter. But there are times we all just want to yell, “Aaaahhhhhhh! What do you want NOW?!?!” Whether you shout this aloud or just think it, this is is is warning sign that you should walk away. Just remove yourself from the situation, take a few breaths, and collect yourself. It has the effect of deactivating a bomb.
3. Take some time for yourself.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel ready to lose it because I am existing on fumes and overwhelmed by mom life. There are never enough hours in the day to get it all done. It is extremely frustrating for a Type A personality, such as myself.
Then, there is the fact that being a mom means that you are never alone. There is no such thing as privacy or peace and quiet. Someone is always on you, next to you, or nipping at your heels. Someday, you will long for these days to return, but right now you may wish to take a pee by yourself. Just once.
I am the worst at this, but I recognize the value of taking some time just for me. Maybe it is enjoying your coffee before the kids get up or a glass of wine after the kids are asleep. Even if it is ten minutes, we need this time! It’s like pushing the “reset” button. Keep that head attached to your shoulders and schedule time in for yourself every day!