If I had a quarter for every time someone asked me if I was done having kids, I’d be a millionaire 💰. Ok, maybe I am exaggerating just a tad, but it gets old. The next question is almost always, “How do you do it?” 🤷🏻♀️ I think it is usually asked in the rhetorical sense, much like, “How are you?” is these days, but I am going to answer it all the same. 🙌
Seriously, that is essentially how it is for all moms. Right? We plan these amazing weeks, months, and even years, and when it comes down to the day, it’s ‘fly by the seat of your pants and pray no one gets sick.”
Ok. ok. This is how I really do it.
I posted a few productivity 📝 tips in my last post, but I want to share the behind the scenes thoughts and daily actions that get me through it all, not just how I maintain some semblance of productivity.
I talk with God. 🙏 I spend a hot minute recruiting Him into my corner. Rather, I spend time reminding myself and acknowledging that He’s got my back, and that He loves my children more than I do, so I plead with Him to not let me screw it all up too horribly. And to fix my kids when they grow up. I say a million thank you’s, and try to be kind. But Satan 😈 works really really hard, and some days, I find myself turning right back around and asking for repentance 🙏 for yelling at a kid 30 seconds after my prayer was over. 🙄
I write ✍️ lists 📝 . I talked all about it in my last post, but seriously, if I don’t set reminders or write it down, my mind literally blows up and I am an anxious mess. So, I write it down, set an alarm, sift through my head and get it all down on paper. I will often carry around a piece of paper for a long time, notes scribbled on the back of my child’s Jesus picture from nursery. But it works, and it helps me keep things in order.
I make sure to workout 🏋🏻♀️ 🏃🏻♀️ before 10 AM! There have been a handful of late in the day workouts compared to how often I get in my early workouts. Eventually, I will be back in the phase of working out before 7 AM, but right now, we have a newborn, so 10 it is. I found this to be a non-negotiable when I was struggling with chronic lower back pain. If I want to physically keep up with my kids, I have to workout with no more than two rest days in a row, a week at the most. When I was healing from Adrenal Fatigue (😴burn out), I seriously struggled SO MUCH! I need this endorphin boost. My rest 🧘🏻♀️ days are required now, and I am still working on how to get that boost on those days. I spend a lot of ‘rest’ days out and about or just outside with my animals 🐓 🐕 🐈 🦆 in order to get out of my head and boost my mind a bit.
I hug and kiss 😘 my husband. A lot. Seriously. Coming into contact with my partner in crime (not that way – get your mind out of the gutter) will bring my nerves down at an exponential rate. We know now that if I am elevated, but not too elevated, a long hug will bring me down. You need to be partners👩🏻🤝👨🏼, period. You need someone to support you emotionally, someone that you can talk to, and now that we have figured out how to be friends (that is a totally different post), it is much easier to handle the chaos! The kids love/hate it too. “Don’t kiss!” “Ewww that’s so gross🤢! I’m never gonna do that!” It’s classic.
I eat as healthy 🥙 as I possibly can most of the time, and then enjoy my treats 🍪 the rest. I try not to put too much brain power into my macros, calories or any other fancy word that is associated with
deprivation ‘diet.’ I follow a way of eating that mostly incorporates plants🌱 . I am mindful of what I put into my mouth, and when I am feeling like I am little sugar addicted I will keep a food journal for a few days and follow a super easy portion control system to make sure I am eating enough. Often times, if left to my own devices, I won’t eat enough and I will gain or retain weight and get really tired. So the fatter I am, the less I am eating. True story🤷🏻♀️. This is partially why I am so passionate about coaching, I recognize so many issues with trying to live a healthy lifestyle, and then depriving yourself. I want to coach that out of people, and teach them to love and respect their bodies and to fuel them properly.
Snuggle all the babies 👶🏻 . Seriously, what is the point of raising kids if you don’t take time to just snuggle them, and be with them🤷🏻♀️? It isn’t just about keeping them alive, it is about connecting with them, and loving the people they are turning into. I love picking up on my kids’ personalities. At the end of the day they are the main topics of conversation between my husband and I. We are charged with raising them, and we can’t do that if we don’t know them. I go beyond feeding them and putting them to bed, we spend time saying goodnight to each of them, asking them about their favorite part of the day and letting them go from there. I don’t force them into sports or extracurriculars of any kind (right now). I make them beg🙏 me and show me they really want to be involved in something. We have enough land we can keep them in pretty good shape, and once they have talked my ear off about something, and brought it up without provocation, we put them in it. I remember when my oldest did swim team. We let her have a three day trial period, she loved it so we stayed in, a month in she realized she didn’t love it as much and just loved recreational swimming. She knew we were committed though and she stuck it out. She also learned something about herself, and gained a little grit in the process.
Friend time. You don’t need to have a party. You just need at least one friend you can sneak out with for a little refresher. I have a ‘momcation’ with friends all over the US one weekend every year. And once or twice a month I will hang out with a friend, or have a long phone conversation with one, sans kids. I also try to have a friend in my life that is past my stage of life. I like to talk with people that have been through what I am going through, I love their words of wisdom and advice. If you see someone that is a lot like you want to be in 30 years, be their friend, figure out what they would do differently if they could go back, and figure out what they did well. It pays to have connections you can learn from, you never know how it can bless both of your lives.
Being a mom to a lot of kids isn’t that different than being a mom to a few. I focus on putting God first, setting my intentions, making sure I am healthy enough to keep up, prioritizing time with my Husband, connecting with my children, and making time for a friend every now and again. Some phases and times of year are busier than others, but when I focus on filling my bucket and acknowledging when I need to, I handle it ok. I couldn’t do it without my amazing husband. I couldn’t do most of these things without his help. I certainly couldn’t be writing this right now if it weren’t for him. But likewise, I try to help him fill his bucket too.
The end goal is to raise decent human beings that will make a positive difference in the world. To raise them with grit so they can make hard choices and face their consequences with dignity. We are letting them screw up, and learn how to fix it. We have some really strong personalities, and we are raising the leaders of our next generation. We want them to know how to lead us into the future!
So there it is. Next time someone asks me how I do it, I will point them right here. It really isn’t about whether or not I can handle the number of kids I have, it is how I handle what life throws at me that makes the difference. So if you think I am more patient than you are, or can handle more than you can, you are dead wrong. I can’t handle all that I have right now, no one can, what would be the purpose of learning and growing if we could? These are just the things I have learned to do to cope with it all. So hang in there, Mama! We’ve got this!
How do YOU keep up with it all?! I want to hear all about it in the comments below! 👇👇
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