Hey Mama… Yeah YOU, we need to Talk! If you’re reading this, chances are you’re battling Anxiety and being a mother hasn’t made it any better. Having children is a beautiful thing but if you’re already fighting with anxiety rearing its ugly head in your life, then the responsibility to keep a little person alive has become less fairytale and more of a task of constant WORRY! Unfortunately, I UNDERSTAND! But today we will sort through this together as we talk about Battling Anxiety As A Mom. I will also include a few things you can do to OVERCOME it! Keep reading for more…
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First, I want to let you know that you are NOT alone! A lot of mothers suffer from anxiety if they admit it or not. Plus, i’ve NEVER come across a mother who said she didn’t worry about her kids. If she did, SHE WAS LYING! It’s natural and most days I can’t even believe God trusted me with the responsibility of taking care of a human. That means you’re freaking awesome as a mom. You Go Girl!
As Always In The Spirit of Transparency, we have to discuss the fact that anxiety cuts deeper than worry. Fear and Anxiety is crippling and depending on severity, it can be life altering. For me, it started 4 years ago after my mom passed away. As a parent, the what if’s of life has haunted me and overthinking EVERYTHING is at the top of my list of talents (I say that sarcastically). What if I’m not here long enough to go through life with him? Does he ever feel lonely? What if something happens to him beyond my control? These are daily questions in my mind. Here are some things that happen to you when you suffer from anxiety.
You Overthink Everything
Going back to the “Does he ever feel lonely” question. We have been co-sleeping since the day we bought him home from the hospital. I know someone somewhere is judging me but to be honest BABIES NEED THEIR MAMAS (Yeah I said it). I just couldn’t wrap my head around letting my 2 day old sleep alone after he’s been inside me for 9 months. Not the mention the fact that getting up every 5 seconds to check on his breathing turned me into a zombie. I gave up and put him beside me and he’s been there ever since. My husband often asks when he will move to his perfectly decorated room but to be honest IM NOT READY. I can’t get over him being alone. Between us, I won’t even turn my back on him while I’m sleeping (Yeah! It’s that serious). I’m a work in progress.
You Cry… A LOT
I am actually kind of embarrassed about this one but it’s a force of nature. Since he was born I couldn’t honestly tell you how many times I have cried. When I see a news story about a child who died…I cry. When I see a movie about kidnapping…I cry! When I look at him sleeping in all his perfection…I cry! I think this goes back to the over thinking everything part that I mentioned above. Everything that happens to another child could potentially happen to any child including mine. The idea that even as his mom; I have no control over the future SCARES THE LIVING CRAP OUT OF ME!
You become a Helicopter
This is horrible and I promise I am working on it before he gets old enough to get annoyed. How many date nights have we gone on in his 17 months of existence? 2! Yep just 2! I feel bad because my husband needs a wife but I just don’t have that option while we are in the military. Even when we go home to visit I feel like no one could take care of him the way that I can. Plus, he doesn’t know them well enough to feel comfortable. The two dates that we have gone on…I almost lost it! I couldn’t eat my food fast enough and omg the drive back home took what felt like FOREVER. I literally didn’t feel better until I knew he was okay. What if he was looking for me? I know I can’t be the only one who feels like this!
How Do I Overcome Anxiety?
This is a million dollar question! While I don’t have all the answers and guarantee you that I am still a hot mess, I can share some tactics that have helped me quite the noise over the last few months.
- Prayer/Bible Verses
I talk a lot about how a change in mindset is the golden ticket to success. Well, the same is true for dealing with fear/anxiety/depressions. Scripture has helped me to see that these things are not of God. He doesn’t put these kind of burdens on us. After that realization, I found it much easier to shake off the negativity I held in my mind
Fear- Isaiah 41:10/ 2 Tim 1:7
Anxiety- Phil 4:6-7/1 Pet 5:7
Depression- Phil 4:13/Lam 3:22-24
2. Talk About It
I honestly don’t know where we get off making things like Anxiety taboo. It’s like claiming problems with mental health automatically alienates you from the “normal” people. This has got to stop! There are way too many people out there suffering in silence and letting thoughts eat you alive. If you can, speak to your spouse, a trusted friend or even a therapist. They can help you work through those negative thoughts and shed light on the positive.
3. Write It Out
If you have not yet worked up enough courage to speak to someone about your anxiety, writing could be a great and quick option for you. Writing can be the easiest way to sort out your thoughts and daily journaling can liberate you from the burden of your worries. Journals are inexpensive and only takes a second to make a note.
4. Think Happy Thoughts
For every bad or negative thought I have, I try to combat it with a positive one. It’s exhausting to be in a constant battle with yourself but as I mentioned above, the change in mindset in your golden ticket. By thinking positive thought you are setting the tone for your reaction to any situation.
I hope that this post gives you a little sunshine to the end of your dark tunnel . I have every bit of faith that you can overcome anxiety and put that monster away for good. I work at it every single day and I can’t be sure that I will be healed but I know that I tried. Are you a mom who struggles with anxiety? If so, Lets start a meaningful discussion in the comment section. Also, be sure to share this with a mom who suffers from anxiety as well. Let’s help each other! #MotherhoodRising
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