As Ethan has gotten busier (and busier!) and takes fewer/shorter naps, I've been feeling frazzled again in the morning. Especially when I'm trying to get out the door, I feel like I'm in a huge rush and that I'm setting a poor example for him. So I'm going to try a few things to be a little more structured and organized during my "me" time, hoping that it will allow me to be more flexible during the time I spend with Ethan.
When I get up in the morning, the first thing I do is make myself an iced raspberry mocha (Did I tell you I bought an espresso machine to save myself from my Starbucks addiction? It totally deserves its own post, so I won't elaborate, but I am in LOVE!). It doesn't take long at all, but trying to measure coffee while Ethan inevitably opens the refrigerator and begins to remove items (yogurt! milk! carrots!) usually results in misery when I remind him that he just ate breakfast and is probably full. Please don't think I'm denying my little guy... He's one of the rare toddlers that would eat all day, every day, until he got sick. But if he doesn't open the fridge and see the food, he's completely content to play. So I'm going to avoid it. My mocha will be made the night before and refrigerated. I get my coffee; kidlet stays out of the fridge, and a meltdown is averted.
The getting-out-the-door part is usually the hardest part of my day. I always think about moving the carseat to my work car when Ethan is napping... and then I rarely do it. I'm definitely going to make a concentrated effort to get this done, along with packing the diaper bag and taking my work "stuff" (lunch, laptop, etc) out to the car. Then, even if I'm short on time, I won't be trying to throw things together while chasing the little one. I usually end up getting frustrated and short-tempered, and I don't think that's a good example to be setting.
And something else that I've already started doing is to simply slow down. I don't exactly have a busy schedule, but I don't like feeling like I'm rushing Ethan. He's two; he doesn't get deadlines, or rigid schedules, or the pressure to go shopping, stop at the market, have lunch, and make it to work on time. So I've decided not to live like that either. If I don't make it to the store, or the market, or whatever other optional (though I know it doesn't always feel optional) errands and activities for the day... I'll do it tomorrow. Or the next day. It's not worth rushing my little guy around. I don't want him to grow up thinking we always have to be running from one thing to the next. I don't want "hurry up!" to become a mantra. I want to have time to let Ethan walk around the market - at his speed. To play outside in the yard and not have to set a time limit on it. To eat sitting at the table, not in his carseat.
So... As I implement these little changes, I'm hoping that they will help me to slow down, relax, and go with the flow a bit more. Life is too short for rushing through headlong. I want my child to grow up knowing that there is always time to play.