View Full Version : Developing Patience - In Me?

08-20-2010, 05:36 PM
I'm trying to figure out a way to be more patient and relaxed about our schooling (and everything else). We are not real intense at this point - the kids are only 5 and 3 and we're already doing K/1st grade stuff so I'm not worried. But, I spend so much time rushing around - taking my oldest to school in the morning, getting her afterschool, driving her to dance, eating dinner, rushing back to pick her up from dance. Even though we have hours in between drop off at school and pick up, I feel on edge like we need to get through things quickly.

I know part of the problem is I spent 20 years working full time and rushing was a part of life. Now that I'm a SAHM I have a hard time slowing down and taking it easy. I'm generally a laid-back person so this edginess is really bothersome.

I know I'm also suffering from not enough time to myself and not enough sleep. I've had a real problem with insomnia lately and my youngest gets up by 6am. She's still too young to do much for herself so once she's up, getting more than 5 minutes to myself is impossible. I think that may be factoring into my inability to relax.

Sorry so rambling. Any suggestions?

08-20-2010, 06:03 PM
I'm in the same boat... trying to slow myself down. I've had insominia too and that makes me edgy. We're taking it easy with lessons until we get into a more relaxed routine and things settle down. Bless your heart, I just have one to deal with. Ask my hubby, I have the HARDEST time relaxing! I'm usually on the super - go, esp when I was working and doing fifteen things at once. I can't really offer any suggestions at this point but do offer sympathy and welcome to the club, as it were. I will say that I have had some improvment on my temperment and sleep since taking calcium and Omega 3 supplements, but that is me and I've had issues with menopause (yes, I'm getting old) and parkinson's disease.

08-20-2010, 06:11 PM
Thank you for the sympathy. I've actually been wondering if I may be entering perimenopause (yeah, I'm getting up there too). It may explain the insomnia and generalized crankiness but the lack of patience and rushing have been a problem for years. I think I'm more concerned about it since I'm trying to do things with the kids and I hate feeling like I'm constantly pushing them to move on to the next thing (whether its school or games or playing or eating or whatever).

08-20-2010, 06:20 PM
That would do it - with the PM. I started PM at 40 and am 46 now. It's gotten easier and I also take B complex vitamins which help with the mood swings. I know what you mean about pushing... I can't seem to just sit and enjoy it sometimes... lets get moving already! LOL

08-20-2010, 06:23 PM
Going through the same thing! I have actually started planning days (1 to 2 a week) where we have no plans. And we just do whatever that way I can experience what it's like not to feel rushed. I can honestly say, it makes me uneasy. The kids love it though so I am sticking with it. As for insomnia, take about a tablespoon of dried lemon balm and steep it in hot tea about an hour before bed. You can't do it every night but 2-3 times a week and it should help you relax enough to get some sleep. I have had insomnia all my life and it's one of the few things that helps me sometimes.

08-21-2010, 05:56 AM
I've been having sleep issues too and have worried it might be the onset of PM. I've been taking vitamin D and it seems to be helping, although I haven't been taking it for long so it's hard to say.

Slowing down is hard. What worked for me was to move to a place that has absolutely nothing going on, but I don't recommend that! ;) I do think it's important to notice the little things, to take the time to really absorb whatever it is that's going on around you even if you have to force yourself to remember at first. Start slowly, notice the children's laughter from across the house, inhale the scent of your favorite garden flowers, actually taste your morning coffee instead of gulping it down.

My little guy takes 100% of my attention when he's awake too so I know where you're coming from. But it's as important for them to be able to slow down as it is for you, and they'll learn the skill best from watching it happen.

08-21-2010, 11:25 AM
Here is a modified pose a yoga teacher taught me to help you relax and sleep better...before bed lay on the floor on your back with your bum right against the wall and extend your legs up the wall so your feet are going up to the ceiling. Try to lay there for 5 to 10 minutes just quietly breathing. This changes your blood flow and allows the mind to calm down and relax. Try it - hope it helps you get some sleep - Toni

08-21-2010, 01:27 PM
You're in good company, it seems. :) I wonder how many of us 40-ish moms there are who are dealing with insomnia, peri-menopause, etc. I just started taking a vitamin/herb supplement called Adrenal Support (made by my local natural food store, but there are others out there) which has helped immensely of late. That, and cutting out caffeine, but I'm really feeling the need to add a little of that back in so that I can get my brain moving in the morning.

I wonder if having more patience would be cultivated by something like Dong Quai tea (Yogi teas has one called Women's Energy that is quite tasty), and/or the herb Ashwaganda, which is supposed to affect one's cortisol levels. I'm not a health care professional, though, so please be well-informed before trying anything new out!

Toni, I love that yoga pose! We had a women-only class and I'm pretty sure that was everyone's favorite. The teacher used to come around and put sandbags on top of our feet--it was awesome.

08-21-2010, 07:11 PM
Dorothy, as much as I hate to admit it, getting regular exercise really helps me with mood swings and sleep. I haven't exercised most of the summer and have felt moody and my sleep has not been restful. I started exercising again this past Monday, have kept it up every day, and it has made a huge difference in how I feel and how I am sleeping. "Just Dance" for the Wii is my new best friend! No instructor barking at me and just fun music and dance steps. Hope you get some relief!

08-21-2010, 08:16 PM
Oooh, Beth, I might have to check out that Wii game. Dancing is the one form of exercise I've been most regular with in the past.

08-21-2010, 09:36 PM
Thank you for all the suggestions. I think I'm going to look into some of the supplements and see if any help. I love that yoga pose and I'm sure I could use more exercise. I did try to start doing Tai Chi again since I've been feeling very stiff and sore but my 3 year old offered so much "help" I barely got through the warm-ups and had 3 interuptions (and my 5 year old wasn't even home to offer his "help"). I've been very limited in what I can do since the heat, humidity and air quality warnings this summer have been very hard on my allergies/asthma. We're spending way too much time inside with the air conditioning. I'm thinking of getting a Wii and some of the exercise programs. I like the sound of the dance program. I was also thinking of trying a Zumba dvd.

08-21-2010, 11:35 PM
. I'm thinking of getting a Wii and some of the exercise programs. I like the sound of the dance program. I was also thinking of trying a Zumba dvd.

We have the Wii Fit, and while I do enjoy it, I find it hard to get a good cardio workout with it unless you do a lot with the running portion of the program. The strength training and yoga poses with the Wii Fit are good and the balance games are just a lot of fun. "Just Dance", if you really try to keep up with the dancers, is a great cardio workout and you don't need the Wii Fit balance board for that. I've been wanting to try Zumba so if you find a DVD you like, let me know. :)

08-21-2010, 11:53 PM
Patience is one of the things I struggle with a lot. A. LOT. (I know - it sucks to see a homeschooling parent use that phrase, but work with me here, lol). I am a pretty wound-up kind of person so we're constantly going.
When I feel like things are moving too quickly, we'll intentionally go off the grid for a couple of days - no social engagements, minimal electronics, lots of outside time. I find that an afternoon spent in the pool is a fine 'time waster'.

The dance game for Wii sounds interesting. I'm going to have to give that a look-see, too. Thanks for the recc!

08-22-2010, 05:16 PM
I have struggled with hormonal issues, also. I'm 40 but it's been going on for a few years now so my problem may be PMDD, particularly since it's cyclical. I don't want to take prescription drugs if I can help it. I found a company that offers vitamin supplements for my symptoms. My dh can tell if I forget to take them because I start getting very irritable again. They're rather expensive, unfortunately. The company is called Women to Women. The website is www.womentowomen.com. If you become a member they send you the vitamins and a nutrition guide (which is nothing we don't already know about-fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, cut the sugar, fat, and carbs). If you sign up for a membership they send your vitamins automatically without your having to remember to order. I don't know if that will help you but it has made a noticeable improvement in my symptoms, so I thought I'd mention it.

08-22-2010, 05:20 PM
Oh, and I meant to mention that I have recently been practicing meditation. I don't really know what I'm doing but I checked some books and a video out from the library and it really does help, especially at night when I can't make my brain be quiet. I do very simple ones-breathing, awareness, and mindfulness meditations, and it calms me down. When the kids start getting out of hand and I feel myself losing patience I'll go into my room for a little while and just breathe. When I'm through I'm usually human again.

08-22-2010, 08:39 PM
I loved the Women-to-Women program (started by Christiane Northrup), but unfortunately developed an allergy to something--probably one of the herbs--in the supplements. The diet and nutrition book was very soy-heavy, I found, and I can't eat soy, either, but if you don't have any allergies I highly recommend the program.

08-23-2010, 12:12 AM
How I love all the posts! I have felt so stressed lately as well and getting good sleep seems a distant memory. I am now taking notes on everything that has been mentioned including digging out the Wii 'Just Dance' :)

08-23-2010, 10:12 AM
I have to second the meditation idea. Jon Kabat-Zinn developed a program called Mindfulness Meditation... there are books you can read (my personal favorite is "Full Catastrophe Living") but he also has a set of CD's with guided meditations on them.

I can't recommend it highly enough. I can always tell when I've pushed meditation too far to the edges as my insomnia comes roaring back and I get edgy, anxious and cranky. Learning to be mindful has been intensely difficult for me (a go go go go go go go all. the. time. kind of gal) and amazingly worthwhile. It's a practice... not a "perfect" LOL so you have to be kind and gentle with yourself, which translates into a lot more patience with the kids (in my experience.)

Hope that helps a bit :) I think it also helps to remember that we are all human, and that perfectionism is a real problem. Strive for optimalism, not ideal, and a lot of stress will vanish. Any home schooling parent who says it's a breeze and they never lose their patience, get cranky, etc. is either pathological or lying. ;-)


08-24-2010, 07:50 AM
Great thread. Instincitve Mom, that's me too a tee so I am hearing ya!!

I will completely and utterly vouch for eating well, really well, exercise, lots of fresh air and sunshine and meditation/yoga (gee if only I could practice what I preach lol). When I was pregnant with my littlest (over 2 years ago) I did pregnancy yoga/meditation classes and for those months whilst I participated I truly felt like it changed my life.

After having bubs, life just got in the way (you know how it is) and here I am over 2 years later only now getting my butt into gear to try and find some meditation/yoga classes locally.

By the way just want to add that I love how open and honest the discussions are on this group, it really feels like you all know each other very well.....it's fabulous!

08-24-2010, 07:54 AM
Hope that helps a bit :) I think it also helps to remember that we are all human, and that perfectionism is a real problem. Strive for optimalism, not ideal, and a lot of stress will vanish. Any home schooling parent who says it's a breeze and they never lose their patience, get cranky, etc. is either pathological or lying. ;-)


Thanks Lo, agree completely, easier said than done though. One thing I have realised is that (for me anyway) we homeschooling mums have the beauty of seeing it all with our kids, even all of the not fun stuff, it is always around for us to deal with and at times I have fallen into the trap of just seeing the bad days or the kids giving me grief and forgetting about all the great stuff we are doing together as a family. For me its about putting it into perspective...if that makes sense! LOL!

08-24-2010, 09:36 AM
Thank you for all the suggestions. I am definitely taking notes.:) I have a hard time taking classes out of the house due to kid issues - there's not much with childcare for older kids (even my 5 year old since of course they are supposed to be in school) and oldest dd has dance (so transportation issues) 4 nights a week. Plus by the time dh is home from work I'm beat. Right now our house is extremely small so I can't get away from the littles for quiet time (there is absolutely no place to go where you can't hear a normal conversation in any other room). I tried doing meditation using my I-Touch but it has to be really loud to drown out the outside noise and I can only do it when someone else is here to keep an eye on the littles. We are building a new house where we won't have these issues (should be done by spring) and fall's coming so we should be able to get out more. DH and I talked and we're probably getting a Wii for Christmas. Although I doubt the kids will leave me alone to use it until we're in the new house and I can be in a different area of the house.

I was thinking of getting a bunch of fun party songs - the kind that have dances that go with them - that I could do for some exercise that the kids would have fun doing with me. They find Tai Chi boring so they just keep interupting. :p This way they could also work out some energy and simple steps are probably not a bad idea for me since I'm not overly coordinated. :o So far I've come up with - Cupid Shuffle, Macarena (arm workout?), bunny hop, chicken dance, the hustle, the Achy Breaky, the Cotton Eye Joe, the Cha Cha Slide. I'll have to move some furniture out of the way to give us room but it should be possible.

08-25-2010, 09:18 AM
I am loving your "CAN DO" attitude!!!! Sometimes we just have to keep trying different things until either something works or something changes.

Keep going!!! You're inspiring :)