This afternoon and evening I tried to take stock of my needs. As a full-time mom for over 2-1/2 years with a 2-1/2 y/o daughter and a 7 m/o son, there are LOTS of times that I have not taken care of my needs. Those are the times that I have gotten iritated with my husband, snappy with my kids, and frowny with myself.
It was husband-work-til-8-p.m. night at our house and that means I get to put both kids to bed. This can be a tiring ordeal. But this evening I focused on what my needs were at any given moment. Here are some of the things I thought and some of them that I said to my daughter in our quest for a peaceful nighty-night time:
I need to feel appreciated. I need to feel appreciated for what I do when I try to help you go to sleep.
I need to know that everyone in this family is going to help everyone else in it go to sleep when they need to.
I need everyone in this family to help keep everyone else in it safe.
I need to know that everyone in this family gets all sides of all their teeth brushed everyday so they won't get cavities and hurt.
Through this afternoon and evening I discovered that my biggest unmet need was to be appreciated. A few times I said to DD, "I need to know that you appreciate what I do for you. Please and thank you help me know that." I have never used that statement with her before, but I sensed that she could relate, that she needs to be appreciated too, and that she wants to help provide for this need of mine (in an appropriate fashion, of course). And, she did say thank you a few more times than I think she would have otherwise; not that that was my goal.
So, that was my experience today in my quest to determine what my needs are, communicate them to my children, and realize the reality . . .
Pg. 28: "The bottom-line reality--that your needs matter and that you must first care for yourself before others . . . "
P.S. THANKS to whoever chose this book for the month. It was on my list to read and I'm so glad I am reading sooner rather than later.