Slowing Down: Pregnancy, a Toddler, and the Homestead

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“How do you do it all?”

This question gets thrown at me quite a bit, and while I appreciate it, I have to tell the truth: I don’t. I’m honored that some people think I’ve got it all together and can be a Super Woman mom, but let’s get real. I am seven months pregnant with an almost two year old who doesn’t stop from the time his eyes open until they reluctantly close. I am exhausted. I am in a constant whirlwind of meal preparation/clean up, snacks, mountains of laundry, and dirty diapers. My to do list is miles long and something gets added to it every day. This is something that causes me a lot of stress because I’m the type of person who loves crossing things off my list and getting it all done, but I have come to a realization: I cannot do it all.

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Did I mention being seven months pregnant?

On the homestead, there is a never ending list of chores and projects to be done. Feed over 100 animals, collect eggs, move pigs and chickens to new grass, make sure fencing is working properly (seriously, pigs love to escape), tend gardens, and that’s just outdoor chores! Indoors we have a spirited toddler, which means toys and messes everywhere on top of the standard housework. There is a lot going on here.

This is enough to make anyone exhausted, but you add being pregnant and you enter a whole new territory. Being pregnant is hard. Being pregnant with a toddler is hard. Being pregnant with a toddler, 100+ animals, three gardens, and household chores? Forget about it. There have been many times during this pregnancy that I have cried to Chance feeling so discouraged that I couldn’t get everything done like I used to. I’ve felt broken down and disheartened by being too tired to pick up every single toy strewn about the house or that there were overflowing baskets of laundry that needed put away. Exhaustion and hormones will do that to you, right? During one of my breakdowns, Chance gave me some good advice that I really needed to hear: I’m putting way too much pressure on myself, and I need to slow down.

Slow down? Yeah right. To me, if I slow down the walls will collapse around me. I have way too much to do, but as I thought about what he said, I realized the monstrous pile of clothes would be there tomorrow. They toys flung around the house could sit out overnight, and the world would carry on. There may be a few dishes in the sink, but my sanity is intact (sort of, I am the mom of a toddler), and I don’t feel overworked. I can be okay with all of these things because we have clean clothes, even though they’re pouring out of multiple baskets. Toys are everywhere, but we had a great day playing. The pile of dirty dishes? We had home cooked, family meals. I don’t have to do it all! My to-do list will always be there. I will take time to rest and enjoy my family.

Slowing down and relaxing is something I still struggle with most days, but I am putting in a lot of effort to change that. I am focusing on cherishing each day with my family instead of worrying about being Super Woman. Who needs a cape, anyway?

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