Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Kid Time: When Mom is Tired

You may have noticed (or not noticed) that my Kid Time post and Family Home Evening post were absent last week. Well, my husband and I found out last week that we are expecting TWINS!!  The news took us by complete surprise.

My sweet husband has adjusted rather quickly to the idea of having four kids. Whereas, I have had a much harder time adjusting to the news. (Keep in mind, I have two other kids ages 2 and 1.) I suppose the news is more difficult for me because I am the one who is pregnant, the one who will deliver two babies, and will be the primary nurturer for four children all ages 3 and under.

Thankfully, right now I just have to worry about being pregnant with twins. My pregnancy so far has been great! I have not been sick at all. I do not have the food aversions I did with my first two pregnancies, nor have I had any strong food cravings. In fact, I have really wanted to eat mostly fruit and vegetables - a nice change from the french fries I craved with my last pregnancy.

Like I said, I have had a pretty easy pregnancy until last week. Last week, I found myself getting exhausted after just a few minutes of any activity. I had one day where I fell asleep every about two hours. If I sat down on the couch between chores, I fell asleep. When I laid my daughter down for her nap, I woke up 30 minutes later next to her on the bed. I have never been this tired before in my life!

So, here is my question...

When you are exhausted (or sick) what do you do to still give your kids attention?
What activities do you do with your kids to keep them learning and active?

I am looking at about six more months of being constantly exhausted (and that is before I bring home two tiny newborns who don't sleep through the night). I obviously cannot just let me kids watch movies for six months. That is just boring!

Please help me out! I know that we have all had those days and weeks when we are tired and/or sick.

How do you meet the needs of your kids when you are having a hard time meeting your own needs?


1 comment:

Alyssa Harper said...

Oh honey, I totally feel for you. I wasn't pregnant with twins, but my last pregnancy found me dropping off to sleep all over the place with a toddler running around too! Here's some things that helped me:

1) Going out. To the library. The park. An indoor play place. Somewhere where the kids can run around and let you just sit and supervise. Now that might seem counterintuitive, because going out may wipe you out even more, but after a good solid hour or two of running around, your kids will be more apt to be a little more quiet around you at home later. And remember, play time is learning time. Your kids will benefit from outside time.

2) Staying in and inviting friends. Even when I was tired, it was so much more energizing to have another mom to talk to while our kids played during a play date. Social skills are important learning.

3) Pick up learning DVD's from the library. While I'm not saying you should sit them down and let the TV babysit them for hours, there's no harm in letting Elmo, Wordworld, or other good learning programs entertain them for 30 minutes so you can have a quick break. Just set an alarm clock and take a quick breather next to them. I didn't sleep deeply, (obviously...who can with a toddler next to them?) but I did flutter in and out of light sleep...just enough to energize you like you wouldn't believe. I like learning DVD's better than TV, because when it's over, it's over. No amount of begging will change that.

4) Trade off babysitting with a friend. Schedule to take her kids when your husband is home and can help, and perhaps she'll agree to take yours for a few hours during the day when you need a break. For me, 10-noon were my most trying, tired hours. Explain to your husband that you absolutely NEED this, because you do. Being pregnant is exhausting work, and it'll only be for a few more months. It'll probably be different for you, especially since you've got twins, but my intense fatigue only lasted from about months 4-7.

5) If it gets really bad, invite your mother to come stay with you for a few days. Pregnancy fatigue is no joke. I wouldn't want to push it on my mother by any means, but if she has time in her schedule and a visit is feasible, having a few days to take naps when you need to and better recoup for the long haul will help you out in the weeks ahead.

6) Ask for help when you need it. This is kind of threaded through all my other suggestions, but it's important enough to get its own bullet point. Call on your visiting and home teachers. Let your relief society president know...she'll probably want to bring you meals, which is actually surprisingly helpful, even when you're fully healthy and just tired from being pregnant.

Furthermore, just remember, you can do it! This impossible fatigue will pass, and your babies will be absolutely beautiful!