We were set for the perfect date night! My mom was coming over to babysitour three young children so we could go to dinner and have a night alone at her house! So basically we were swapping houses for the night!
We were excited! I mean a WHOLE night to ourselves was a priceless gift and who were we to deny that offer? So we put the date in our calendar and planned our night!
After enjoying a movie and dinner we headed back to mom's place. We started to unload the van of the bags and things we brought over to have our night alone and as I was coming out of her door to get another bag my ankle twisted on a small step oustside her door!
At the time I was wearing a pair of sandals that were quite heavy, they were the ones with thick bottoms. I heard my ankle break, right then and there. I had hurt my ankle before but I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt it was broken!
My husband grabbed a chair that was on the porch for me to sit on and my body started shaking, it was a tough moment and I knew our date night was indeed over! We ended up in the emergency room most of the night and once we did get out I was so out of it from a shot they had given me for pain that we called it a night!
What was I going to do with three young children and a broken ankle? I had no one who could help me. My mother in law who always helped me out had just passed away the year before. My mom and friends all worked full time and I lived off the beaten track of all my homeschool friends.
My husband and I came up with a written list that would help me get through my day. Sometimes mom is down. It could be illness, a broken bone, bed rest during a difficult pregnancy, or maybe she isjust extremely weary!
Here are some things that can help!
Get the older kids to help- Well, I will have to say my kids were so sweet trying their best to take care of mommy while she was hurt. "Can we bring you pillows" , " Can I get your walker" Phone?
They were so loving and it helped so much! My husband sat my oldest down and explained that mommy would need extra help in the coming days and he(my son) would be such a huge help to me! It made him feel grown up and he loved coming to the rescue. I wouldn't have made it without him!
If you have tweens or teens in the house, it is even better because they truly can run a household if they need to!
Special pitchers - Many of you already have these in your house but at the time we didn't. We brought some pitchersthat have the spout on them so the kids can just put their cups under and fill their glasses with water.
Even my youngest can do these, and I didn't want my 9 yr old dealing with our glass pitchers all the time by himself, afraid if they broke he could cut himself or make a mess that could be dangerous to the younger children.
Pre-Made Lunches - My husband pre-made some cheese sandwiches and my 9 yr old just heated them up in the microwave, voila, grilled cheese (kids loved them)! You can also make up lunches like you would if your kids were going to school, a paper sack with a sandwich, fruit, and chips!
A lunchable, or something easy to grab out of the fridge like pre- made peanut butter and jelly can work too! If you only have a baby or toddlers you may need a packed cooler near by!
Books, Toys, or School Materials - We are homeschoolers so all the kids gathered up our school books and supplies and put them in a big bucket next to the couch, we are doing school that way with me on the couch, its not ideal but it works and its kind of exciting for the kids to do it different.
Maybe you don't homeschool but you do have young children at home. It is great to have reading books to read to them, small toys and fun things to look at together.
Special Basket or Tray -I had a little tray that had my phone, remote control, teachers guide, books I wanted to read, water, and of course my laptop.
I also keep sanitizing soap so I don't have to stand at the sink too long, that way I could always wash my hands quickly when I needed to!
Snack Baskets - My husband left snacks on the counter tops at easy reach so when the kids needed one they can bring it to me to open for them.
You can make baskets with pre-made snacks in sandwich bags in them. Something crunchy, something sweet, and so on. You can also have fruit in the fridge for easy reach!
Diaper Changing Area - If you have really young children, have a diaper changing area near you with a baskets of diapers, wipes, sanitizing soap, and rash creme. Have your husband or children keep it stocked!
My husband worked hard to take care of us! The house was a mess but meals were made (loved ones have even brought some over) the kids were dressed and some school was getting done.
There will be times in life where we just have to get the necessities done and that is ok!! Don't stress during those times!
I don't believe God gave me a broken ankle but I do believe he used the trial to slow me down! I was overwhelmed and needed to rest! I actually look back at that time and remember sweet memories of just great quality time with my kids.
I had no where to go so I had to rest, got lots of snuggle and read aloud time in, and just felt extremely loved and grateful for this family that I have!
What are some things you do in your home to help when mom is down?
Angela Richter, Together with Family