With Easter coming up, I thought it was a perfect opportunity to talk about holidays with kids. I want new and seasoned moms to understand that holidays can be a struggle as a parent and that it is totally normal.
I remember waking up Christmas morning when I was a kid and feeling the “magic” in the air. That has always been my goal as a mom – to give my kids that magical feeling on all the holidays.
What I didn’t know and expect was how tough those holidays were going to be having 2 kids 14 months apart. I found that when I expected things to go a certain way when the kids were younger, I was almost always let down. When the kids were babies and even in their toddler years, they were so unpredictable, emotional, sensitive, and needy, which made doing any “fun activity” with them difficult. So when it came time for holidays or birthdays, I wanted everyone to have a memorable and exciting day, and that usually backfired on me.
Honestly, like a lot of the memories I have of when the kids were younger, it is all kind of a blur. But what I do remember about those first few holidays was feeling so stressed and anxious and like no matter what I did to make the day special, the kids always reacted negatively. The frustration and sadness that made me feel was overwhelming, and I wish I had been kinder to myself as their mom. If I could go back, I would try to recognize that the holidays were hard with them because it was a change in their routine. There were many times I would question myself as a mom when things wouldn’t go perfectly, but now I hate that I was so hard on myself.
Moving forward, my goal is to not put so much pressure on myself or my kids during the holidays. The days will pass regardless, and whether I react negatively or positively is the only thing I can control. I will allow the holidays to be a day that my kids will not be learn new things, instead it will be about getting through the day and being kinder to them and to myself. Hopefully having this new mindset will be helpful and we will find the holidays more enjoyable as the kids get older!