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Monday, March 16, 2015

12 Tips for Moms with A.D.D. (Part 2)

5.  Become Pragmatic

Do you know what Pragmatism is?  It means doing the practical thing over the ideal thing or the creative thing or the ______(insert descriptor here)________ thing.  I love aesthetics (when things look beautiful) - but I don't have the time, energy or resources to fix everything around me up nice and pretty.  I see people's beautiful kitchens.  And I sometimes want my kitchen to be like that.  But I cook in my kitchen.  I love all my super gadgets.  People with pristine kitchens often don't cook much or have no addiction to gadgets like I do.  So I have decided to just be myself about my kitchen.  It may not be fancy-schmancy.  It is mine.  I have stuff out everywhere - accessible.  I have decided my dream kitchen is no longer the stuff I see in magazines.  My dream kitchen is an industrial kitchen with easy-to-clean open shelving and carts - and it look cluttery and very practical.  Magazine-like kitchens often are not very practical.  Sure, they look nice.  Counters are clear.  But when you want to whip out a fruit smoothie for the kids on a hot afternoon you have to dig under counters to pull out that blender that is providing that visual appeal.  I'll take the clutter with the practicality.

I just applied that to the kitchen - but the principle is the same in other areas of life.  Sometimes being practical means only buying/owning clothes that don't require special laundering (no dry-cleaning), or ironing.  Being pragmatic may mean we don't have all 5 kids in extra curricular activities at once.  It may mean enrolling them all in the same activity to cut down on running-around all day.  You get the idea.

Pragmatism.  It works wonders.

6.  Realize Your Gifts: Maximize Them

Part of this is knowing yourself.  I know my strengths and my weaknesses.  I'll work on my weaknesses the rest of my life.  But my strengths - these I can harness and use fully to the benefit of my family and surrounding community.

I don't mind cooking for a crowd, so we have people over a lot.  Is it chaos?  Sometimes, yes.  But I roll with it - because I'm parting with perfectionism!  I can empathize, so I talk and visit with people!  I can play the piano, so I do, wherever I can, whenever I can!  Having A.D.D. can be annoying and downright frustrating.  Sometimes we need to just learn to be our nutty, weird, fun, odd, bizarre mix of traits - simply put, ourselves, and just get on with life.  Which leads me to no. 7:

7.  Quit Comparing Yourself to Others

It is natural to compare what we do, how we look, what our homes look like, how our kids are doing, our hobbies (or lack thereof), travels, you name it!  But natural (or instinctive) doesn't make it good and right.  It is a waste of energy.  Like I said earlier, I have limited resources.  I choose to not waste those mental resources on comparing myself with others.  Others might seem to have perfect lives.  But they don't - I guarantee it.  It only looks that way.

Focussing on your own stuff means less time thinking about how others live.  For me - I see other Mom's who seem to do it all.  They can have a job, a pristine home, well-mannered children, clean laundry and nutritious meals.  All. The. Time.  They have: Perfection!!!  Oh well, back to MY real life.  I don't live their lives.  I don't know their struggles.  So what if they look perfect.  I don't have time to dwell on such things.  Neither do you, probably.  (Just tell yourself, "My brain does way more than their brains.  Mine is super charged all the time!")  Great consolation, that line.

8.  Allow Yourself the FREEDOM to BE YOURSELF

This is just like the last one, but aside from comparing.  Just enjoy being who you are - creativity, imagination, daydreaming - whatever makes you you.  I just love being me.  Not always - mostly.  There are times I annoy myself.  Like when I talk too much (which is most always), or slide into anxiety mode.  But other than these pitfalls I realize I lose the joy of being who God made me to be when I wallow in guilt and self-abasement.  Get out of the doldrums and thank God for making you the way He did.  There is a song I sang as a child and the words always puzzled me.  They just didn't sound right.  It was a cute song - but the message has taken decades to sift from the cuteness into my experience:
 "If I were a butterfly, I'd thank the Lord for giving me wings,
and if I were a wiggly worm, I'd thank You Lord that I could squirm,
 and if I were a fishy in the sea, I wiggle my tail and I'd giggle with glee,
but I just thank You Father for making me ME.

   'Cuz You gave me a heart and You gave me a smile,
   You gave me Jesus and You made me Your child,
   And I just thank You, Father, for making me Me."

Sometimes it's hard to thank God for making me me.  But I am part of His creation so it is insulting to Him to constantly wish His creation were something else.

Click Here for Part 3: Part 3

2 comments:

  1. I, too, thank God for making you YOU.

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    1. Thanks! I'd love to know who wrote this :)

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