Fredericksburg Parent

July 2014

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www.FredParent.NET • • • 33 family values Every marathon runner finds a pace. They don't run full speed all the time or they would never make it to the finish line. Mothers, too, need an acceptable pace - expending ener- gies at reasonable rates. Just as every runner is different, so is every mother. pick the pace that suits your physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual health. your household will follow your lead. This conserves and stores energy for the hills ahead. Every runner knows the path is not flat. Every marathon has break stations to nourish and hydrate runners. Experienced runners take every opportunity to replenish. They know if they deplete themselves, their race is over, collapse and illness ahead. Moms cannot function well without doing the same: refueling and peri- ods of rest are vital. This not only happens at the din- ner table and nighttime sleep. Moms need a few "catch your breath" breaks during the course of a day. For some, it may be reading emails. For others, a cup of coffee/tea. still others may need to circle the block with the stroller, even if the infant isn't happy. some may just need five minutes on the porch for fresh air and fresh perspective. It is okay to sit down and breathe a bit, as long as children are safe. Every mom needs moments of interlude sprinkled into life. a teacher friend of mine, who left the public profession once she entered motherhood, learned to find moments of respite as a homeschooling mom of three. she is teacher to three differ- ent grade levels, all day, every day. she discovered a need for some refueling escapes. so, on occasion, she asks her husband, who works in town, to slip home and take on lunch duty. For a few moments of numbing silence, she drives her car to the WaWa next to her neighborhood. her husband's time being lim- ited, she orders a sandwich and eats it in the car—all by her- self. she says it is just what she needs some days. she feels refreshed and ready to tackle what's ahead. she has learned a vital lesson: I am a better mother if I take advantage of break stations. The pounding pavement of activ- ity/endless demands of motherhood requires a pause. If we do not revitalize our energy and spirit, motherhood will seem over- whelming and utterly impossible. When in actuality, success was waiting in a "bottle of water" or "a drive to WaWa." Elaine Stone, mother of three, lives in Spotsylvania County. Break Station Ideas 1. Read a blog 2. Call a friend 3. Sit on the deck/porch 4 Take some long deep breaths 5. Cup of coffee/tea 6. Listen to music 7. Read something inspirational 8. Sing out l oud (read: 9. Thumb through old photos 10. Have some chocolate 11. Light a candle 12. Watch the clouds 13. Color with crayons 14. Just dance 15. Give thanks " " There is no way to be a PERFECT MOM, and a million ways to be a GOOD ONE.

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