Setting the Emotional Tone of Your Home
- 2011 11 Mar
My family is going through a difficult time right now. Well, better put, I’ve made some choices that are affecting my children. They seem to be weathering things okay but they also could be little codependents just putting on an act so I don’t feel guilty. Only time will tell.
But one thing I’m trying to get through my thick head is that I, as Mom, apparently set the emotional tenor of my home, as do you sweet fellow mothers. “If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy” rings truer than any of us mamas want to admit. I don’t want to believe that my mood affects anyone but me, but it completely does, especially my kids.
If I drag myself around in a funk each and every day (not saying that I am, but if I hypothetically were to…), my kids are going to pay for it. Not only will they suffer from a weary mom who doesn’t want to do stuff, but the fun factor goes down drastically, my irritability goes through the roof, and they may have the propensity to take on some of my dreary characteristics.
Now, I’m not saying simply to sweep everything under the rug and suck it up if in fact you are going through a hard stretch of life, or even if you’re having one of those days. But I am saying, please don’t let it take over your life (this last sentence was me speaking straight to myself). And I am saying, do some things to take charge of your emotional health.
Here are just a few tips:
- Seek counseling. There’s no shame in getting a third party involved to help you process through your situation.
- Spend time with your friends. Time with my girls is a highlight for me in this dark season.
- Eat a little better, move a little more, sleep a little longer. In other words, take better care of yourself physically.
- Plan something fun to do with your kids.
- Plan something fun to do alone.
But my number one tip is this… spend time with Jesus. Only He knows all the details. Only He will never leave you. Only He can heal your soul. Only He will love you no matter what crisis, sin or failure sweeps into your life. Only Jesus.
Through all of this, I have been praying at night with my kids that God will pour out his healing, strength and joy over our home and into our family. My kids know that we’re going through a hard time - and they’re of the age that it’s appropriate for them to know that – so it’s of utter importance to me that they see that I am in fact hurting but that I’m doing everything I can to get my healing and comfort from God.
I heard someone say recently that our parents just wanted to give us a better life than they had, and we just want to give our children a better life than we had. I’m not sure I agree. There is almost nothing I can do to shield my children from future pain because life is filled with pain. So because of that, the best thing I can do for them is model how to walk through the fire… and that’s holding on to the hand of the One who will walk me, and them, through anything.
March 11, 2011
(c) Elisabeth K. Corcoran, 2011
Elisabeth is the author of He Is Just That Into You: Stories of a Faithful God who Pursues, Engages, and Has No Fear of Commitment (WinePress), In Search of Calm: Renewal for a Mother’s Heart (Xulon), and Calm in My Chaos: Encouragement for a Mom’s Weary Soul (Kregel). All of her books can be purchased on Amazon or through her website at www.elisabethcorcoran.com.
Check out her book trailer for He Is Just That Into You at http://www.vimeo.com/7093233.
Visit her blog at http://elisabethcorcoran.blogspot.com/.
You can follow her on Twitter at ekcorcoran or friend her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/people/Elisabeth-Klein-Corcoran/1301703500.
Watch Elisabeth and her friends spread hope through Africa with Samaritan’s Purse at http://www.vimeo.com/7919582.