By late April I start dreaming about it.
Forecasting and planning it.
I crave the freedom it will bring.
Summer break is coming and you guys…
It’s sure to be the best one yet!
At least that’s what I tell myself every year. My kids are a year older, more independent, I’ll be a healthier version of myself, we’ll have pre-prepped fruits and vegetables abundantly flowing from our fridge. I’m sure we’ll have loads of reading time, craft time and for sure pool time. There will be frequent beach trips and library visits. Screen time will be earned by a handy dandy chore chart they’ll happily do every morning when they jump out of bed after sleeping in just long enough for me to get my morning routine in.
I mean, we ARE there, right?
They’re a year wiser and more responsible.
I’m a year more put together than I was last summer.
If you’re laughing at me, you’re welcome. I’m just saying what we all have the audacity to dream. And if I’m real about it, my dream this year was challenged day one of summer break when Chloe, our nearly seven year old, ran in to our room like this at 7am and said “WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO THAT’S FUN TODAY?” I have no idea where the hat came from. I don’t think I want to either.
The struggle is real.
Like an actual legit thing.
Check this out. Motherly’s 2019 State of Motherhood survey found that 51% of moms feel discouraged when it comes to managing the stress of work and motherhood. Roughly a THIRD of us moms said that our own mental and physical health is suffering. You guys. THAT’S ONE IN THREE OF US. And now we’re heading into that blessed, beautiful ten week period of time that we long for and then often find ourselves burned out from. How do we manage the stress of work and motherhood in the summer?
We have the luxury of having the pool among our friend groups which means I’ve sat with many mom’s in the backyard making it rain sunblock and safety reminders like Oprah makes it rain tears from her guests. The overwhelming commonality I find between all of us is that we’re trying so hard to make sure we’re doing it “right” that we’re wearing ourselves thin and we’re not necessarily enjoying it.
Brené Brown, one of my favorite authors and speakers said “Burnout is so epidemic that it can even become our shtick.” She also relays a time she heard advice from a priest that really hit her: “If you don’t want to burn out, stop living like you’re on fire.”
Stop living like you’re on fire.
Do you ever feel that way? Like you’re literally going and going and going, you’re not sure what you’ve done but you’re exhausted and you’re still not all the way through your list of things to do today? I have. I still feel that way more often than I care to. And guess what? It doesn’t have to be this way.
Can we all just take a deep breath and agree that there is no “right way” to do any of this? There is no hustle that will make this all perfect. No amount of craft projects that win you mom of the year, no amount of playdates or beach trips that will get you that trophy. Whatever you do this summer with AND without your kids will be memorable and enough. And we won’t judge you for the way you do it with your family. Even if it’s different than our own plans.
I will say-I did get caught in the trap just this morning when Chloe said the “B” word. (“Bored” is officially a swear in my house this summer now.) I gave her options-color, read, do a worksheet, watch a tv show, play outside and she dared say none of those were what she wanted. I actually felt a pang of guilt for a second. Maybe I should put my stuff aside and play with her-I could work tonight when she’s asleep even though I’ll be tired and it will be late. And then we walked by the toy closet. Duh. GO PLAY WITH YOUR TOYS KID! I know I’m not alone in this. Our kids have toys. Buckets of toys, literally (I’m an organizer by heart) and yet it didn’t even occur to me to tell her to go play with legos, blocks, Barbies, lincoln logs and number of toys she has readily accessible.
Flipping the script on burnout
So join me. Let’s do this. Let’s flip the script on summer burnout for moms this year. Let’s lean in to the things that work and let go of the things that don’t. We can enjoy ourselves with and without our kids and not feel guilty about it. Are you willing to try? I’ve developed a five step plan to avoiding the mom summer break burnout we’re all facing this year and I would love to share it with you. It even comes with a checklist and a worksheet…because I know you’re just like me. Just click here and I’ll send you a copy by email right away! Let’s walk the walk together and untangle this one little piece as mom’s, shall we?