Feeling like you’re on the edge of burnout? Constantly overwhelmed? Not able to give 100% to any of the roles you play day to day? Mama, it might be time to drop a ball. On this week’s episode of The Resting in Motherhood Podcast, I’m sharing how I finally came to terms with the fact that something had to change in this season of motherhood – my hardest season yet. I was juggling mothering a toddler, solo parenting, running a business, and dealing with family health issues. I felt like I was disappointing myself and the people I care about. I had to choose what mattered most and focus my attention there. But how do you go about this process? Listen in to hear my story!
- How prioritizing journaling has helped Brittni find more peace and regulation as mama and a few questions you can ask yourself today
- Why the past 7 months have been the hardest yet for Brittni as a mother – mothering a toddler, solo parenting, running a business, and dealing with family health issues
- Giving yourself permission to validate the harder things in your life rather than leaning on toxic positivity
- When Brittni realized she needed to drop a couple balls in her life to stay sane and how she went through this process
- Getting comfortable with asking for help and advocating for yourself and the example that this sets for your children
Read a raw, unedited transcript of this episode.
Hey mama, how are you today? What’s going good in your life? What’s challenging you? What are your struggles? I ask these questions and unfortunately I can’t hear you answer back, but something that has really helped me in motherhood is kind of checking in with myself. Unfortunately, I don’t get to do it every day just because of life, but one of the things that really helps me is just journaling.
and doing a mind dump and getting everything out. I find that when I can tune into myself and tune into where I’m at, what’s working in life, what struggles I’m having, I tend to find more peace, I tend to be more regulated, I tend to have more patience as a mom. So when I ask those questions, I hope it just invites some time for reflection.
And maybe you pause here and I don’t know where you’re at, if you have your little one around, but either you could journal or just kind of think and talk to yourself, where am I at? What’s life looking like right now? What am I struggling with? What am I excelling at motherhood right now? What feels easy? What feels hard? The more we can spend time with ourselves and just nurture ourselves and our relationship with ourselves, the easier motherhood feels.
It doesn’t fix everything. It doesn’t get rid of the tantrums or the long nights, but it helps us find.
but it helps us find more peace and more presence in motherhood. So as always, I will share how I’m finding rest in motherhood right now. I am currently finding rest in motherhood by doing exactly what I just told you to do, really being mindful of spending time with myself.
whether that be in journaling, whether that be just sitting outside for a few moments by myself. If I don’t have a moment to myself, if Lila’s there, sometimes I’ll just use a drive if we’re going somewhere to just kind of think through things, think about where I’m at. Sometimes it’s working out, but just really trying to be intentional about spending time on myself mentally.
or physically, like I said, like working out, but just spending time to check in and say, hey, where are you at? Because we can get so lost in taking care of someone else that we forget to check in with ourselves until it’s too late and we’re burnt out and angry and we’re lashing out at our partners if we have one, we’re losing our patience with our children more than we would like to. So how are you finding rest in motherhood this week?
This week I wanna talk about something that has really appeared in my life in the last seven to eight months. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know this, but my dad went in for a simple gallbladder removal back in March, which did not go as planned. It ended up with lots of complications. It ended up in him needing a liver, a full liver transplant in July, and he just…
got back home about three weeks ago. And so in that process, one thing that became abundantly clear is how much my mom and dad really are my village when it comes to Lila. I’m a solo mom, so I don’t have a partner. And then when my dad went into the hospital, that meant my mom was spending every day with my dad at the hospital. And so I really lost that village of support. I was truly parenting solo.
And I do have a wonderful sister, but she has her two own children. She has a job. I relied on her as much as I could, but it really became this gaping hole in my life where I realized how much I relied on my village. And I will tell you, the past seven months have probably been the hardest months in motherhood that I’ve had. And…
I would even say maybe harder than the first year, which is really saying something because I mean, the first year of Lila’s life was so incredibly hard for me. But doing mothering a toddler while trying to run a business, while solo parenting, while also trying to keep myself emotionally stable while dealing with everything going on with my dad, it was a lot.
quickly realizing that I wasn’t able to do it all. And I was beating myself up so much because I felt like I wasn’t cooking enough. We were eating out a lot. My house was messy. I was being less patient with Laila. I was being less present with Laila. I felt like I was dropping balls in my business. I felt like I had all of these goals and expectations for this year and then.
nothing had gone according to plan. And it led me to this really dark place. I was feeling really bad about how I was showing up as a mom and I was feeling really bad about how I was showing up as a business owner, how I was showing up just in my life. I wasn’t happy, I was constantly stressed and everything was just bleeding together into this mess, this really dark space that I was in.
And I don’t want to toxic positivity my way through it because it was a really hard time. We didn’t know if my dad was going to make it through. My mom was practically living at the hospital. This was just something that none of us had any preparation for. We were just thrown into it. And so I want to validate how hard it was. I don’t ever want to be the person that’s like, oh, everything’s great. Everything’s fine because it wasn’t the case. But I was getting really low because I was being
so hard on myself. I felt like, like I said, like I was failing as a mother. And so one thing that I started realizing was I had to drop some balls, which was really hard for me because I’m a type A perfectionist and it just felt really hard to think about dropping balls, to not be doing everything quote unquote perfectly, even though
None of us are perfect. The perfect mom doesn’t exist. The perfect person doesn’t exist. But I realized I needed to figure out what balls needed to stay in the air and what balls could drop. I’ve seen somewhere somebody put like, which balls are glass and which balls are rubber. Meaning if we drop the glass ones, that’s bad. If we drop the rubber ones, they’ll keep bouncing. And if we need to, we can pick them up again.
And so I really started tuning into like, what was a glass ball? What was a rubber ball? What needed to get done? And what could I let slide? And so I really had to do some internal work there and think about, okay, this is what I’m capable of doing right now. And so that looked like on some weeks, you know what? I probably won’t cook a meal this week. We’re gonna eat out every week. I’m gonna order in. Maybe I’ll cook one or two meals.
quick and easy meals, but I just didn’t have the energy to solo parent all day, try to run a business, think about what I was gonna make for dinner. I mean, in an ideal world, maybe I would have meal prepped, but I didn’t have the time, I didn’t have the energy. And so that was a ball to me that was rubber. I tried to order out food that I felt was healthy for us, but again, when you’re ordering out, it’s never gonna be what you could make at home. And so I let that ball drop.
And honestly, it’s still kind of dropped. My dad’s home. But it’s just something right now that I feel like if I was trying to focus too much on it, it would add too much stress to my life. And then it would lead to me being even more burned out. I would be less patient. And so that was a ball I dropped. Then I turned to other balls. I looked at my business. What could I drop? What could I put aside? I had all of these goals for this year that
are not gonna be finished like I planned. And that’s really hard as a business owner. If you own a business, you understand that. I mean, even if you have plans around the house or something to get done, you know that feeling of you have this goal and it’s just not gonna happen. And instead of beating myself up or feeling like I was failing, I just realized that that’s not the plan right now. It’ll come next year, I’ll have the time next year. So I started dropping the balls in my business
I knew were rubber and I could come back to when I had time. And then I turned to my personal life. What was I adding into my life that was causing more stress that I really could drop? Sometimes that looked like leaving the house a mess for, to be honest, days at a time, because some days I would say, okay, we’re gonna get up to the cabin. And I’m the type of person who I normally would clean the house before we left.
But to me it was like, I don’t have the energy for that. I wanna get us up to our happy place where we can relax and we can be still. And so that meant leaving the house a mess. Sometimes it meant leaving the dishes for the next morning. And honestly, the more I let those balls, those rubber balls drop, the easier it became to just be present and focus on the things that actually needed to be focused on.
I was able to focus on taking care of myself in any way that I could. I was able to focus on being more present with Lila, being more patient with Lila, being who she needed me to be in this stressful time for our family. I was able to focus on the parts of my business that needed focusing on, like my clients, showing up on Instagram, but that was also tweaked a little bit. I started realizing that I really needed to be mindful of my time.
And I really let those balls drop. And here we are, my dad’s home from the hospital. Some of them I’ve picked back up and some of them are still on the ground. And so that’s what I would invite you today to think about if you’re feeling burnt out, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, if you’re feeling like you are burning the candle at both ends, if you feel like you just can’t anymore.
If you notice that you’re impatient, whether it be with your partner, if you have one, if you’re being more impatient with your little one, if you’re getting to like a dark place of feeling, beating yourself up and feeling mad at yourself about how things are going, tune into your life. What balls are you trying to juggle? And which ones are glass? Which ones are rubber? Which ones can you drop? Which ones absolutely need to stay in the air?
And maybe that means taking some time and journaling it out, journaling what feels really stressful, journaling what triggers you, journaling, kind of reacquainting yourself with your parenting values and your goals. And then from there deciding what needs to stay in the air and what can I let go of right now. And it doesn’t mean it won’t get picked back up. It just means that right now, it’s not a ball that’s serving you. And
When you come back to it, when life’s a little bit calmer, or when you feel like things are more in control, you might still decide to leave that ball on the floor, or you might decide to juggle it part time and then let it fall. But I think the lesson here is really, truly accepting that none of us can do it all. And we aren’t meant to do it all. Motherhood, parenthood in general, truly was meant to be done in a village.
In the first year of life, a long time ago, when villages were a real thing, everything was done for the mother so that she could take care of her baby. And obviously that doesn’t get done now. There’s a quote I’ve seen somewhere that’s like, parenting isn’t hard. It’s all of the responsibilities that surround us that we have to do while still being a parent. And I think that’s so true because I think about all of the times where
meltdowns happen or we feel torn in two directions and we’re not able to give that connection our child needs. Oftentimes the root issue is not our child’s behavior. It’s the fact that we’re not fully present or we have something to do or we’re rushing. And I’m not saying our children’s behavior is our fault, but a lot of times our children’s behavior is a reflection of kind of what’s going on in our life.
And so we need to understand that we weren’t meant to do it alone. We weren’t meant to do it all. And now most of us are doing it alone. Uh, I’m very lucky to have my family around me. I know that a lot of people aren’t, whether that be because they just don’t have that relationship with their family or whether it be because of proximity, being far away from them. So I just want to remind you and give you a loving reminder.
that you’re not gonna be able to do it all and that’s okay. You have to be nice to yourself. You have to tune into what’s going on in your life. You have to tune into what you need. You have to tune into what your child needs and from there figure out what’s the best plan ahead. What can you let go of? What can you not let go of and go from there? And I’ll also say that if you do have a partner or you do have a village of support around you, whether that be family or friends,
Lean on them where you can. I think one thing that I did struggle with and maybe didn’t do as good of a job as I could have while my dad was in the hospital was reaching out for help. I’m kind of stubborn that way. And I feel like if someone wants to help, they’ll just do it. But oftentimes people don’t know how to help. And now I’ve learned with friends or with anything instead of an… I…
We can’t expect this of everyone, but what I’ve learned with people is, for me, if they’re not asking me for help, I’m going to reach out and ask them, but not everybody feels comfortable doing that. And so if I need help, what I’ve learned in this process is to reach out and say, hey, it would be really helpful for me if you could xyz. If you feel comfortable with that person, if it’s your partner, if it’s a family member,
really getting comfortable advocating for ourselves as well. Because another thing is, is when we advocate for ourselves and when we invite help in, we’re showing our children that it’s okay to ask for help, that they don’t have to struggle alone. So, what ball can you drop this week? What could you ask for help with if you have someone to ask for help? And just, I wanna remind you to be kind to yourself.
to again remind yourself the perfect mom doesn’t exist, to remind yourself that we weren’t meant to do this alone, to remind yourself that you don’t have to do it all. We live in a society that can make us feel that way, but it’s not a reality. So I hope this leaves you with some hope, maybe some peace in knowing that let a ball drop. It’s okay to let that ball drop and life will continue on. Have a wonderful day.