Hi, friends! Today kicks off a super fun weekend for all of us! Emma Grace is spending the weekend with her grand parents at Great Wolf Lodge and Abigail is having a date weekend with Trav and I at the Hilton Hill Country in San Antonio. We’re super excited for some alone time with Abby and equally as excited to hear about EG’s fun time away!
I hope you all got to see my post earlier this week about not being okay. In this world of social media where we show our best life, I think it’s equally important for us to share that we struggle, too. If you caught my post, then you are aware that we’ve had a trying couple of weeks at the Cobbs casa. And as much as I hate hardships and tough times, I have worked a lot this past year to welcome them, to embrace them, and to let God use them to grow me.
As I’ve practiced mindfulness and trusting God with everything in my life (not just what I’d like to give up), I’ve learned a lot. But these past couple of weeks, I have really honed in on one specific thing. I learned that no matter what is going on in my personal life, work life, etc., I am the “joy barometer” for my family and for my girls. Yes, that responsibility falls on the dad, too, but I believe the parent who is at home the most carries the biggest responsibility. I happen to be the parent with the privilege of being home the most with our girls. Therefore, I have to own the responsibility of being a joy barometer.
As I meditated on this thought, I also talked with other women about it. It was interesting to hear that every single woman I talked to agreed that their mom was the joy barometer for their family. There were countless stories of “when mama ain’t happy, ain’t no body happy.” Examples of mom being sad and therefore the kids in the home being sad. Or stories of the unpredictability of mom’s moods and the chaos that resulted in amongst the children. Stories of their “favorite memories” revolving around a “happy day” with mom.
As an adult, it’s hard to see sometimes the weight of our moods, our tone, and our actions. It’s hard because intellectually we’re processing things at a much higher level than our kids. Our children on the other hand don’t quite understand what a certain mood means or what happened to lead you to be in that mood. They can’t compartmentalize things like we can. Instead, they look to us to know if they should be happy or sad, feel safe or unsafe. Y’all, we have a huge impact on them!
So over the past week I’ve taken mental notes on our “good days” and our “off days.” I’ve realized that when I’m short or not present emotionally that my girls fight more, struggle more, and seem confused. When I’m fully present, kind, quick to listen and slow to speak, we all function better. We’re more of a team, we’re kinder. My girls are looking to me to know how to act, how to speak to others, and how to love others. The last thing I want my girls saying is that they could never predict what “mom” they were going to get when she came home.
I am fully aware that there are things out of my control in this crazy world of parenting. However, I am fully capable of being the joy barometer. I am fully responsible for my actions, which shape my children’s actions. So, mamas, let’s hold each other accountable and build each other up!
This job as “joy barometer” exists no matter what is going on in our lives. You are it for your kids. You are mom (or dad). You are their joy barometer. Let’s use kind tones, practice patience, and choose joy in the easy and in the hard.