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Challenge: Parents On The Go: What's Your Strategy?

​Motherhood and the Forgetful Stuff

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Motherhood gives us plenty of challenges—everything from taming tantrums and sibling rivalry to sleepless nights and potty training. But is any challenge bigger than getting out the door in the morning, on time and without forgetting something? I think not.

Amy Poehler said it best: “Sometimes I forget where I’m driving them to. I do just stop in the middle of road and go, ‘Where are we going? How are we in this car? Who am I dropping off? And where are we going?’ That happens a lot. It’s a lot of forgetful stuff that every mother has to deal with.”

After losing one too many battles with “the forgetful stuff” I’ve created a checklist that helps me the night before and every morning. Located right next to the door by our garage, it clearly outlines what each of us (my family of 5) must leave the house with according to the day of the week, enabling me to do a quick inventory before we walk out the door.

And while we’re on the subject walking out the door…let’s talk about that for a minute. Some days just leaving the house in the morning seems virtually impossible. About two years ago, my (then 4-year-old) twins could not get with the morning program and I needed to find a way to break the stress-cycle. I created a felt board (this was before they could read) and several items representing all the tasks that needed to be completed—a toothbrush, food, shoes, clothing, a hairbrush, etc. Once they completed each task, they’d velcro the item up on the felt board. So long as they were making progress, I let them control the order in which they completed each activity. So, it meant that every so often they brushed their teeth before breakfast, but the struggles and delays stopped!

As a working mom, I’m learning to be more creative, patient and organized to overcome the seemingly impossible. After all, as Tina Fey said about motherhood, You go through big chunks of time where you're just thinking, 'This is impossible — oh, this is impossible.' And then you just keep going and keep going, and you sort of do the impossible."

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