Are You A Happy Mom?

It’s the last week of January. Statistically, most people have abandoned their New Years resolutions by now.
Gym traffic has slowed. The snacks that were purged from the pantry 3 weeks ago, have snuck back in. The social media fasting that we swore off a month ago, has started stealing our days again.
And though I told you that I threw out my original “New Year Goals” list, and rewrote it with bigger more crazy dreams, I’m here to tell you about one small goal that survived the cut.
And after a month of working hard at it, I’m happy to report that I am gaining ground.
My goal: To be a more happy mother.
I know, it sounds weird. At Christmas I was given the book 10 Habits of Happy Mothers , and though I am excited to read it, I think the idea was already in my head.
To some of you reading, this might sound like a really simple goal. But I believe there are many moms who dream about this type of “big and crazy” life change. Regardless – isn’t it a good goal?

Wouldn’t my life be better if – in my interactions with my kids – they saw me as happy, instead of angry. Excited, instead of exhausted. Seeking out big and small things to celebrate, praise and relish instead of living under guilt, comparison and impatience.

Admittedly I haven’t gone to bed feeling victorious every night. I’ve felt like a failure at times. I’ve lost my temper, been distracted and yelled the word “no”. And the look of surprise on my kids eyes when I say yes… is more than enough of a reminder that they don’t hear it often enough.
But I’m trying. Every day. Not that I can shirk responsibilities, or ignore my work, bad behaviors and never dish out a consequence. I have to be intentional in my decisions.
Let the chores slide and head to the beach. Say yes to eating in the living room. Let my girls wear princess capes to the store, and eat the odd cookie for breakfast. I want them to see spontaneous plans as good things, not burdens or cause for stress.
I’ve actually gone to some pretty great lengths to remind myself to say YES to my kids more often. I wrote the words “divert daily” on paper and taped it to the microwave, which sits at eye level in the middle of my kitchen. I wrote about diverting daily here, and this simple phrase is great practical reminder as I go throughout my day.
I want to be a more happy mom. I want my kids to hear me say “yes” more than no. 
Even if that means they don’t match and look trendy when we leave the house.
Or if we eat dessert right before dinner.
Or we stay up to late. Watch another movie. Or miss a day of school.
I want them to hear “coming sweetie” instead of “just a minute.“Because they’re are smart enough to know that “just a minute” really means 10 more minutes. And when they ask me to “come play”... I want them to remember that I jumped into the fort, the tea party, the mess of the glue and glitter and the dance parties with enthusiasm and wonder.
Because that’s the mom they deserve.
And it’s the mom I want to be!