I Forgot to Smile Today – Mom’ing with Happiness

momhappiness

It’s four o’clock in the afternoon…I’m exhausted, cranky and I’m faced with the prospect of making dinner. And you know what dawns on me? I haven’t smiled today!

If you’re a mother of a child older than eight months, I’m sure you’ve had a day (or month) where you literally had to remind yourself to smile. I find myself traveling through my day, with my checklists, agendas, stresses and worries clogging up my brain and making it nearly impossible for me to just chill, feel joy and smile. I can only imagine what my face must look like most of the time with my kids. I certainly do not want them to think of me and think of a sour face or worried look.

Why does joy fade with age, and stress and fear grow?

Maybe it’s because we’ve seen more…we know what can go wrong and that nothing is guaranteed. I think part of the problem stems from habit. We go through a stressful time and the habit of fear and worry takes over, leaving us shells of our once very peppy, happy selves – the kind of person who has to remind themselves to smile at their kids and find humor in the little things.

videogame

Joy stems from our hearts and radiates outwards. The phrase “fake it, til you make it” couldn’t be more true in the case of joy. It’s hard to feel miserable when you are plastering a smile on your face and giggling with your littles. Repeating Bible verses to yourself, leaving sticky notes with uplifting verses, cute pictures, etc. can be really easy reminders to your soul to smile.

Isaiah 40:31 ESV

“But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”

As a mom the to-do’s are literally endless. Just when you get the pantry organized, you have doctor appointments to make, a birthday to plan, errands to run….it is like a revolving door. But when we take time-out’s to think like a child and look at the little blessing that are everywhere, we can begin to reclaim that joy we once had.

I used to think I was laid back, then I had kids

The book  One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are by Ann Voskamp is an easy read and great reminder to see blessings in everyday little things. Because God is always at work. Whether it’s through a butterfly who landed right in front of you, or a new friend, He is at work in our lives and His smaller blessings are often overlooked.

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