A Single Mom's Morning Routine
What? Really? We have routines?
Ok, as a single mom as much as I tried, I found that sticking to a routine was extremely difficult - but necessary!!! I mean, anything could happen at any moment and I do mean anything! In all fairness, ALL moms (married and single) are challenged with establishing routines - so it's tough for us all. But, when I was married, my routine was executed down to the second (or so I thought) - BUT once I was faced with the absence of a partner - regaining the balance of the routine took a bit of retooling.
My "routine" needed an overhaul! some days I just wanted to cry - but what good would that do? Then, everyone in the household would be in a state of pandemonium! The truth is, most days just trying to get everyone out the door ON TIME for carpool and church was more than I could seem to manage.
Trying to get my time with God, my devotional study completed, matching shoes on my feet, my makeup applied in a balanced fashion ("Mom, why is one check red and the other is not") ... I mean right when I thought I had a routine down, someone was up sick all night, or reminding me on the way out the door that I needed to bring cookies for the team meal by noon that day or calling me once I pulled into the garage to ask me to bring the homework left on their bedroom floor under the jeans they wore yesterday!!!! Really?? I have to try to make it to a meeting; and Oh, I have to get out of my PJ's before I go anywhere!
What does everyone want from me? Calgon, take me away!!!
Yet, even Calgon couldn't take me away from the upexpected glitches in my carefully planned routine!!! Did I mention that on those days in carpool that most of the time I was in my pj's and houseshoes? I was praying the entire time, "Lord, please do not let the car stop or have me get out of this car for any reason." The three kids praying, "Lord, please don't let Mom embarrass us today"!
Listen...let me help you, like I learned to help myself... "You can't quit; you can't be mean - seriously, if you can't get it together... it's simply time to RETOOL!
Retool! Sounds like a "man's word". But, RETOOL simply means to make changes to (something) in order to improve it.
Well, if your routine is not working... if life has you out of balance... just stop... catch your breath.... it's time to make changes in order to improve!
That's what I did, I had to make the changes... and execute a new routine!!!
Of course when they were younger - I just told them what to do and what to eat! Dinner was on the run (packaged in containers/or picked up in the drivethru) - as I carpooled from activity to activity. Devotions and business reports for me were read while sitting in carpool and at practices/games; for the kids Veggie Tales was always playing in the car - needed to get the God factor in them; I found other parents that I could rely on to help as much as possible with transporting kids, and yes, afterschool programs were critical - even though they hated it at times (and will tell you so now) - I had to utilize everything that was available that I felt safe with, and so on.... etc.
And when they got older:
For me, I had to "Insist" that everyone be subject to a nightly checklist , such as:
Is your homework IN your back pack - LET ME SEE;
do you have lunch money or is your lunch made - AND IN THE REFRIGERATOR;
do you have your clothes laid out - WITH MATCHING SHOES AND SOCKS;
did any of your teachers send a note home or email a note - LET ME SEE OR PULL IT UP ON THE COMPUTER
Are both your alarm clock and phone set - DO IT NOW
AND SO ON.... (notice the extra action in CAPS that had to be added...that was how i retooled... extra actions steps and accountability so I would not be yelling at everyone in the morning!)
Again, we often become frustrated because we keep doing the same old thing; expecting different results - it just won't happen unless we make CHANGE. And CHANGE is not CHANGE unless you CHANGE!
So, find a way to RETOOL your routine... it may take time; you may make mistakes, but find what works for you and your household so that you can get into a routine and make LIFE WORK FOR YOU as a SUCCESSFUL SINGLE MOM.
Oh, one more SUPER IMPORTANT THING that really helped me - I WAS ABLE TO find a SET TIME in the morning before my little angels awakened and I spent that time WITH GOD!
Even if it wasn't the hour I wanted to spend - praying, reading, mediating, worshipping - (don't judge me) - if I could get just 15 minutes in each day (even if while on the throne - you know what I'm talking about... lol - we ALL go); after QUALITY TIME SPENT WITH GOD, somehow my daily routine would fall into the right order for me - not perfect (sometimes I didn't make carpool on time); but I found I could make it through EACH DAY with the help of GOD!
So, Mom, RETOOL your ROUTINE!
Put GOD first; Find what works for you and execute it starting TODAY!
The Single Mom's Chronicles Scripture:
Proverbs 31:27 The Message
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household, and keeps them all busy and productive.
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.