I told you in a previous post that I was going to update you on how we did each month implementing the gentle parenting step of the month. Step 1 was to slow down. Hubby and I read this step a couple of times throughout the month. The first time to discuss it and then a couple times to remember to put it into practice.
This step was easy and hard. The easy part was the identification. We were able to look at our daily life and determine what needed to be done. The hard part was making it happen. Hubby and I work opposite shifts making for two tired parents working doubles around the clock. Hubby takes the morning shift with the girls, getting them ready in the morning, walking big sis off to school and spending the morning with baby sis. He does the majority of the household chores in the morning hours (I am working on being better about constantly helping out around the house- I think that deserves a post all to itself). He then catches the bus to meet me at the terminal, hand off the baby and he’s off to work while I’m headed home after work to take over the afternoon/evening shift with the girls. I pick big sis up from school, get lunch together, then take big sis to her activities while little sis and I wait (little sis usually naps while I read or blog). Then we go back home, I get dinner together,
do help with homework, get dinner together, and get the bedtime routine started.
All of this to say that with us working opposite schedules, it makes it harder to make time for us to do stuff together. Part of that will be easier once we have a car. We will have less commute time leaving more time to spend an hour together here and there. What we have been able to do successfully is spend less time on devices. Personally I make it a point not to be on a device when I could spend time with the girls. I write, read, and catch up on social media at night when they are asleep on in the morning on my bus ride to work. Every now and then I will break the rule but the vast majority of the time I’m good about this. The other thing we have done is been more consistent about story time. I used to read to Curly Girl by herself at night before bed but we’ve made it a family routine and we all get in the bed together and even Baby J sits still most nights to listen to me read The Boxcar Children (oh yes, a childhood favorite of mine that I want my girls to have as part of their childhood memories).
So, while I wish that I could say that I have found a way to be supermom effortlessly getting everything done around the house, working my part-time job, taking care of my girls, attending to their every whim, that isn’t the case. On the other hand I don’t think we’ve miserably failed either. We have chosen to work opposite shifts because hubby can stay home and have one on one time with Baby J for a few hours each day and is able to bond with Curly Girl in the morning during their morning routine. With having taken on a part-time position, I’m able to contribute to the financially to the family while still being there for my girls once Curly Girl is out of school.
Join me in this 12 step approach, it’s not too late. You can combine January and February or just start step 1 at the beginning of any month. Take a look at your routine and family schedule and see what you can do to slow down a bit and cut out some time fillers that are taking away from family time. Is this something that your family already has down? What balance have you found that works for you? As always, don’t be shy, I’ll reply!