When brave leaves the house

...and you have to find the courage to get it back again

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I’m in the middle of preparing for my talks at the Baby Sense Seminars this coming August. It’s titled: Toolkit for Brave Moms. But to be honest, this brave mama doesn’t feel that brave at the moment. It’s been almost a year since our big move from the UK to South Africa, and while we are fully engaged to all life has to offer at this beautiful part of the world, underneath the engagement still lies a part that grieves about the life we had at that side of the world. Sometimes that loss shows up and it drains us from the courage to stand up and be brave. And all that is left to do, is to pray…and to breathe.

When your little one looks up from her book and says: “Mamma, I feel I can’t breathe!” you pray that God would breathe His life into her.

When your little one curls up under her bed and asks through the tears rolling down her cheeks: “Why is life so unfair Mamma? Why can’t everything just stay the same? Why do things have to change?” you pray that God will restore in her the armour of His power, so that she can face this changing world with a brave and courageous heart.

She tells you not to tell her that it will be okay. She tells you not say that you understand. She tells you that you must remember that she’s unique and that what she’s feeling is not what you are feeling.

So you just sit with her, you hold her hand and you remind yourself to breathe. Just breathe in His grace and breathe out His love. Breathe in His grace and breathe out His love. Over and over again.

And then, after a while, she looks you in the eye and says: “Mamma, I love you. You are the best mom ever!”

She thanks you for staying with her and not leaving her side. And you breathe in His grace and breathe out His love.

But it takes a while for this “best mom ever” to feel brave enough to face the world. So while you’re nurturing that little 8-year old, you remind yourself that brave moms do one thing well – they look after themselves.

Nurturing means being kind to yourself, loving yourself and believing that you are good enough.

It is only when we love ourselves that we are able to love our children and connect with them in a deep and meaningful way. 

So, today and for the rest of the week, I’m being kind to myself, I’m going to love myself (as He first loved me) and believe that I’m good enough.

First things first, the basics.

As brave moms we need to focus on the basics. So here’s what I’m going to do:

  • Eat healthily. In the next week I will never skip a meal, cut down on my cups of tea and drink enough water.
  • Get moving. I’ll walk our beautiful golden retriever, Skye, every morning. And I’ll play.  Remember what we spoke about last week – the power of physical play (it releases feel-good hormones, organise our brains and bodies so that we feel more regulated, it stabilises our mood and keep up focused and attentive). I’ll find an opportunity (and the time) to rough-and-tumble each and every day with my kids.
  • Sleep enough. I’ve recently found a new bed for my phone (away from my bed) and I’m confident I’m sleeping better. (I’ll share more on this in a future post.) For the next week, I’m going to go to bed half-an-hour earlier and on the weekend, I’m going to give myself permission to have a power-nap.

Over to you:

What are you going to do this week to nurture yourself brave mama?

 

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