The Magic of Mama’s Time Outs

I’ve been 32 for about 10 days now and it hasn’t been sunshine and puppy dogs. Thanks to the nutrition class I recently started, I’ve had another ball to juggle, time has had to be shuffled and reallocated, I’m stressed about homework and video lectures. I’ve been struggling for the last few days. I’ve cried and I’ve yelled and I’ve given myself (or have been given) several time outs.


Someone put Mommy in a corner, please.

You know the symptoms. We know the symptoms. You’ve asked your child(ren) to “please stop doing that because you will get hurt/it will break/the dog doesn’t like that” about 1700 times in a 3 minute span. You’ve tried reasoning and explaining and distracting them, but it doesn’t work. Someone’s standing on the coffee table/jumping on the sofa/trying to color the dog. You feel your pulse in your ears and a heat in your face and holler, “THAT’S. IT.”

Or something like that.

It’s at that point where I turn on the TV or put E’s game on the iPad or tell his dad to watch him and go into another room. Sometimes I take the dog with me. All I need is a few minutes to reevaluate the situation. Is he acting up because he wants me to stop cooking/cleaning/farting around on FB and pay attention to him? Is he bored? Am I still in work mode? I think hard for a few minutes. Or sometimes I just lay on the bed under the ceiling fan and close my eyes. But I come running out if I hear a yell or crash.

I’ve been getting time outs from my husband. “Nay, go take 5,” he’ll tell me as he swoops in do whatever it was I abandoned in a fit of blind rage. Even if I insist I’m okay, he tells me to go away. Sometimes when I come back, there’s a glass of Malbec waiting for me. I like him.

It’s not perfect parenting (but what is?), but it works for me. It helps me diffuse and step away from the situation. In the few minutes I need to gather myself, things aren’t as bad as they were before I stepped away. It helps me yell less and parent better. There is a need to stop and focus. Or not focus on what’s going on and just stop. There is a lot of magic in Mama’s Time Out.

Do you give yourself time outs?

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