Let’s get back to health!

I hope you all had an amazing holiday last weekend! We had a bunch of holiday celebrations. First, we went to my husbands family’s Christmas event. It was nice and low key with a white elephant gift exchange and the kids got a few presents to open. I got to teach my nephew how to play spoons, which was super popular with my friends when I was in elementary school.

Christmas Eve, we had my family and our close friends over for games, food, andIMG_1227 another white elephant exchange. Then, on Christmas we had a lazy, relaxing day with the family. My daughter was so excited to open gifts, so we did that right away in the morning. I think her coolest gift is a caterpillar to butterfly habitat. I ordered this gift early and I was happily surprised that two of the five caterpillars were still alive! I didn’t think of this when I ordered the gift. One of the survivors is in its cocoon already, while the second is fattening up. I think I’m a bit more excited about it than anyone else. 🙂

As we know, with the holidays brings the food, typically sugar laden. Well I got back into my sugar addiction and I also decided to eat some turkey on Christmas Eve. Then every day since, I’ve had a slice of turkey. I don’t know if it’s sugar or meat, but my fuse has gotten shorter. My poor 4 year old has seen the wrath of cranky mama and I feel awful. I am cutting sugar and meat again so I can get back to having more patience with her. Not only that, but I just signed up for a course with Dr. Shefali, “The Year of Manifestation.” This is my present to myself. It’s an important one and I’m so excited to start it in less than a few weeks! (more about this next week)

Anyone else feeling the holiday food crash? You ready to get back on course to optimum health? Let’s do this!!! Health is not just about eating nutritious foods. We need to be taking care of our inner health as well!

Night out

I got some fun self-care in this week! My hubby hung out with the kiddos while me and my best bud enjoyed some girl time! Living where I do, it’s hard to find a place to accommodate my dietary restrictions. I heard of a newer coffee shop that also serves food. I messaged them on Facebook and they sounded like they would be able to meet my needs.

After nursing my babe, we headed out to our date at Harriet and Oak. I ordered a rhubarb cider and my friend ordered some white wine. To eat, we both ordered Buddha bowls- mine with falafel’s- which is gluten free and vegan… well there was a little misunderstanding and feta cheese was placed on top. I don’t like sending things back to the kitchen, both because I’m a little paranoid that they are going to mess with my food and secondly, I hate wasting food (hopefully someone ate it). It was delicious! We had such a fun time chatting and filling our bellies.

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After dinner, we were going to go bowling, but it was super busy, so we decided to put a puzzle together. We thought it was a good idea, but the puzzle was difficult in our state (being both buzzed and tired) so we didn’t make it far and played cards instead. It wasn’t an elegant night, but I don’t need that to get some good self-care in. It’s just what I needed! Thank you for the fun evening, my awesome friend!

What are you doing this week to get in self-care?

 

 

The power of the mind and body

Last week I found out about a book club that meets every Tuesday on Facebook and I decided to check it out. I have a lot of unresolved triggers when my toddler tantrums and I know it’s something that I need to work on for the betterment for my family and myself. I came in late to the book club so I started at chapter 6.

Oh how the universe works is amazing!! This chapter was a little difficult to wrap my head around at some points. Maybe just because I was reading right before I went to bed and it needed to be read that night because I proscratinated. The gist of it, though, was so enlightening! Basically, it was stating that when we hold anger or resentment or any negative feelings toward a person from our experiences, this draws energy from us and by releasing it, not only are you releasing this huge energy drain in yourself, but you’re also helping to release something in them, as well.

How beautiful!! Now, for some reason I’ve been holding on to anger for people in my life and it’s caused me some heartache with current relationships. I don’t like that! I want to be in control of my emotions and my mood. I want a loving and healthy relationship with my husband and children. I do know I’m doing better than my parents and I know they did better than theirs. But this doesn’t mean I’m okay with settling for better when it still means I have anger and feel unhappy too much. I want to heal within to truly be my authentic, happy self.

My plan was to see a therapist, however I feel like I need something bigger. So my plan is to take an online course with a physiologist which is inly $200 with a money back guarantee (see more info below). This claims to do everything I’m hoping to achieve. Along with this, I will be doing more self care by continuing to eat healthy and nourishing foods, meditating, consciously breathing, and when my daughter has a melt down to pause and if I feel something triggered I’m going to sit and try to figure out what in my past needs to heal, rather than react.

Also, I’m going to start forgiving more. I’ve released my anger around certain events and people and already I’ve noticed more energy and positivity.

Are you holding on to anger? It’s time to release it!

Book:
Seat of the Soul by Gary Zukav

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The big kids aren’t alright…

Today, I am going to write about a touchy subject, literally. I’m talking about spanking. When I grew up, it was common place to spank a child when they were “acting out.” I hold no animosity or anger toward my parents because they used this type of childrearing. It’s what they knew, and actually they did a far better job than their parents. Now we have the knowledge about the repercussions from using this type of punishment (along with yelling), which shows that when children are spanked, yelled at, etc. it causes damage to the brain.

The more children are spanked, the more likely they are to defy their parents and to experience increased anti-social behavior, aggression, mental health problems and cognitive difficulties

So many adults I know now, most of them that either don’t have children or have decided to use spanking and yelling with their kids, argue “That’s how I was raised and I turned out fine.” I beg to differ. I, like stated before, had this same punishment and I suffer from anxiety issues, depression, anger, and avoidance to conflict with peers or those in authority positions. Sorry, but that isn’t normal to me unless you are arguing that everyone suffers from the same issues… because the majority of the population was treated this way when they were children. Well, times are changing and a lot of parents are doing the research which proves these types of parenting cause said issues throughout the persons life.

“Numerous studies over the past 20 years have also found spanking to be associated with similar mental health problems in childhood and adulthood, including depression or depressed mood (e.g., Fergusson, Boden, & Horwood, 2008; MacMillan et al., 1999; McLoyd, Kaplan, Hardaway, & Wood, 2007), personality disorders (Lynam, Miller, Vachon, Loeber, & Stouthamer-Loeber, 2009), suicidal ideations and/or attempts and self-injurious behaviour (Fergusson et al., 2008), and substance use.”

I’m not saying that I’m anywhere close to the perfect parent. I have never spanked my child, but when my toddler pushes and pushes to the point where I lose it, I last out either with yelling or I’ve been a little to rough. I’m not proud of it and it something that I work on every day by learning new techniques to be a better mom and a better me! What it really comes down to, is dealing with our shit (sorry for the French) but it’s true. All of the crap that we went through, which is unresolved for ourselves leaks its way back into our lives, especially with our precious children. These kids that tantrum aren’t bad kids and shouldn’t be punished. Instead, we should calm ourselves down and then be present for them instead of continuing the vicious cycle of diminishing and berating them. Children need help navigating their feelings into positive releases because their brains aren’t fully developed into adulthood.

Who wants their kids to fear them? I know that I want my children to know they are loved and supported, even when they are having a hard time. I want them to be able to trust me to tell me about the hard stuff so I know that they are safe and so they feel safe. Typically, kids who are afraid of their caregivers will just rebel more. So let’s lift each other up and heal ourselves for our children so they will be healthy kids and then healthy adults and healthy parents.

Tips for keeping the cool when our kids don’t know how:
1. Breathe, go to your feet, go brain dead:
When we calm ourselves first we are able to better help those around us. It’s like the saying goes “put on our oxygen mask first.” When we go to the feet, it takes us out of our heads which is when we tend to react in a not so pleasant manner.

2. Be there:
If the child is having a melt down, let them. Tell them they are there for them and that you hear them. If they are endangering themselves or others remove them from the situation by telling them “You’re not safe so I’m going to pick you up/move them,” or “I can see you’re wanting to hit, I won’t let you hit” and block the hit all while keeping your tone calm.

3. Time-Ins:
Nothing says I love you more than sitting with them and holding them while they are acting out. On the flip side, putting them in a room all alone says the opposite. I found this to escalate things in our home when we used time outs. My daughters anger rose and she threw things at her door and screamed more, but when I said, “Oh man, let’s have a time in or “time for a time in, I’m going to pick you up.” If the kiddo runs away, that’s okay. Usually this happens I say “Okay, no problem. I just wanted to give you loving”

4. Have realistic limits/rules:
Make your rules of the house realistic for the age of your kids. Also, make sure these set rules are CONSISTENT! Consistency is key! It’s not fair for us to flip flop on the rules, it’s confusing for children and the caregiver, believe me, I know.

5. Modeling:
Children learn from their caregivers. If you yell, your kids will learn to yell. If you use manners, your kids will learn to use their manners. If you have empathy, your kids will learn empathy. Kids are smart! Way smarter than a lot of people give them credit for. We are their teachers and we need to show them the same respect we all deserve.

6. Acknowledge all feelings:
Kids are amazing at being able to self regulate. They do this by yelling and screaming and it’s our job to help them navigate healthy ways to get these feelings out in a more positive way. This could look like screaming into a pillow with them, writing their feelings down, throwing bean bags in a basket, making funny faces in the mirror, etc.

7. Apologize:
None of us are perfect, we are going to have times where we loose our cool and react in a way that we aren’t proud of. That’s okay and it’s a good lesson for our kids to show them that we mess up and make mistakes, but it’s even more important to show them what to do when that happens. If you lose your cool and yell, calm yourself down and then apologize and explain that you are trying to get better and that it’s something you struggle with. I love something I just heard recently that Time Outs are for parents to collect themselves before reacting and Time Ins are for kids.

8. Get help:
There is nothing wrong with asking for help! I have issues with things I have from my past that tend to come out when I’m pushed by my toddler and deep down it’s my own crap that I need to fix. I do this by talking to other parents, my husband, my counselor, etc. I also, listen to podcasts and read articles about parenting to give me ideas when I need them.

Resources:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/08/16/harmful-effects-spanking-toddler-can-trigger-bad-behavior-even-10-years-later/562203001/

http://www.magdagerber.org/blog/category/discipline

http://stopspanking.org/resources/

http://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/04/spanking.aspx/

http://mentalhealthdaily.com/2015/02/18/at-what-age-is-the-brain-fully-developed/

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213417300145

http://mentalhealthdaily.com/2015/02/18/at-what-age-is-the-brain-fully-developed/