Being a mom can be one of the biggest blessings in our lives. It can also be the biggest test of patience, grace, and overall sanity. We get that. Your house isn’t always clean (far from it), your clothes aren’t wrinkle-free (what is “wrinkle-free” again?), your no-makeup look isn’t done to make a statement, and it’s a miracle if everyone in your household (especially you) manages to eat meals at a reasonable time.
At Mom Tribe, we’re building a free, supportive community where moms can share advice and help each other navigate the ups-and-downs of mom life. This month, we’re talking all things #MarchMommyMadness. Just like basketball March Madness, only we’re the cheerleaders and there are no referees. And while we all love our kids, we want to go a step further than the madness itself. We want to know about the self-care rituals, daily routines, and…let’s be honest…cocktail recipes that help you survive — and maybe even thrive! — amidst the madness of motherhood.
To kick things off, we chatted with Liz Clark, a member of our Mom Tribe in Charlotte, NC. She’s a self-described “stay-at-home-oil-selling-window-painting-artist-hippy mom” with three kids; two boys and a girl, ages 9, 7, and 3.5. As you can imagine, her life is full of Mommy Madness.
Many of you can probably relate to Liz’s take on life as a mom.
“Being a mom can be isolating, maddening and amazing, literally all in 10 seconds. I read an article once-upon-a-time by CK Louis that explained it better than I could, ‘having children simultaneously destroyed and saved my life.’ My children are stubborn, argumentative and shockingly intelligent and they push and pull me almost constantly, to the edge of madness and to help me become a better person.”
Sound familiar? So how does Liz get through the daily rollercoaster ride of mommyhood?
Routines and self-care play a huge role in keeping her family on track and her sanity in check.
“I like a good routine and I think it’s good for kids too. Everyone likes structure, even if it’s subconsciously. I bring my kids to school around 8:00am and by 8:45 I’d like to be having coffee on the couch with a daily reading or mediation.”
In addition to a morning meditation, Liz tries to regularly carve out time for at-home yoga videos she finds on YouTube. It keeps her fit, brings her some zen, and is often turned into a fun Mommy and Me activity with her daughter.
“My youngest and I try not to look like fools or hurt ourselves while we bend and lay down and pretend we are doing yoga.”
She’s diligent about integrating elements of routine and self-care through the end of the day, too.
“I’m crazy strict on bedtime because my mom-grace runs out at 8:00pm sharp, so usually at 8:01pm everyone in the house, including me, is crying.” (Who feels her on this one?!)
That strict bedtime isn’t just for Liz’s kids, though. It’s a way to ensure she has some personal time at the end of each day. As she shared with us, “I need to have at least two hours of non-kid time at night to make me feel like a person other than a mom. I also need at least eight hours of sleep or I am a monster, so I try to be in bed before 11:00 and I usually read myself to sleep.”
Liz also swears by natural and essential oils (note the “stay-at-home-oil-selling-window-painting-artist-hippy mom” bio she shared with us) to maintain her physical and mental health as a mom. In her words, “I’m an oil pusher, which I cannot praise enough for keeping my anger, hormones, digestion, diet, and general attitude in check for the last three years. I’m honestly a better person through and through because of them.”
Um, we’ll take three of whatever you’ll give us, Liz.
So if you’re reading this wondering…well, how does Liz even have time to meditate, do yoga, and read actual books at night? What kind of magical world does she live in?! Don’t worry. She’s full of…let’s call them…“time-saving hacks” that also help her survive the Mommy Madness. Some #MomLife #RealTalk from Liz:
“I don’t shower regularly and rarely wash my hair. I like to say it’s for the benefit of my scalp but it’s rooted in laziness and just not having the time for that. I don’t usually eat until around 1 or 2pm and I cannot do life without coffee.”
When it’s all said and done, though, Liz shared the one thing she absolutely can’t live without as a mom: raising kids in a village.
“Nothing beats meeting with friends on a bad day, shoo’ing your kids away, and not feeling judged while you open a bottle of wine even though it’s 3:00 pm. The isolation of being a woman in today’s world can be bad enough and adding kids to the mix (let’s be honest) makes things a lot more lonely. Moms understand the struggle of wanting to put the kids to bed at 5:00pm, the need to just go to Target by yourself, or how your husband refuses to use the laundry basket and puts his clothes on the floor right next to it. Women need each other…and even more so when we are raising kids!”
We couldn’t agree more, and that’s exactly why we’re building Mom Tribe App. Want to be a part of our community of amazing moms? Download the free app today.
You can also join us on Facebook and Instagram as we keep the #MarchMommyMadness conversation going. We’re running a super fun (and hilarious) contest with prizes including Sephora and Chatbooks gift cards. Click here to find out how you can win, and make sure to invite your fellow moms to the Mom Tribe! Here’s a sneak peek of what you’re in for: