Managing home can be quite tough as it is and when you have a spouse who’s unwell, the job gets a bit more challenging. After all, you don’t have the support you need with chores, the baby and instead, have to step up your game and pitch in with errands and activities that earlier your spouse would do or help with. So, do you lose it and let everything fall to pieces or do you do what it takes to keep your home peaceful and yourself sane in the process?
Since my husband’s been unwell, we’ve had to make many changes to the way we do things around at our home. While the going has not been easy, it has been peaceful (for the most part) and in fact, has opened my eyes to newer, better ways of doing the same things. Here’s how I’ve managed our home and balanced our lives during this period of illness and continue to do so:
Lowering Expectations of Self and Others
The first thing I had to do was get real. Acknowledging that I just couldn’t do it all was NOT easy but it had to be done. I took a good hard look at everything that needed to be done and if I could outsource something so that I could manage everything else. I chose housecleaning since it needed to be done everyday, ate up plenty of my time, is relatively inexpensive and was something that I could supervise easily.
Being Positive and Patient
A cheerful face is so much better than a frowning one. We know that but it is easy to forget it when you’re faced with piles of laundry, a growing list of errands and chores, endless trips to the hospital, etc. etc. Making a conscious attempt to smile, look at the brighter side of every moment and being more patient and calmer, even when you really wanna scream can help you deal with tough days easily. I cherish my early morning reflection and prayer time and find that it helps me be happier and balanced through the day.
Is it easy being positive when everything seems gloomy?
But trying is half the job done and when you find that you being happy and positive has an uplifting affect on your unwell spouse and your family, you’ll want to do that more.
I sought support from my online friends and offline extended family and social circle. Nothing major. Just a good heart-to-heart, some advice and plenty of encouragement. But enough to make me feel better and stronger. Thank you, ladies! You made my days sunnier. Sarah’s post on Simple Mom is another example of the support I got from being online.
I also got support by choosing to outsource a few chores (see #1) that ate up a lot of my time since I needed more time to spend writing, going to the hospital and most importantly, maintaining a normal routine for my toddler. It did mean we had to budget further but the time freed up is priceless. I’d hate to plunk my daughter in front of the television while I swept and mopped each day.
A Few Good Management Tools
Having a few systems in place can really help make your life easier. A home management notebook (check out the Organizing Life as Mom eBook) to schedule your menus, to-dos, calendar, budget and even, medical and hospital appointments. A pen and a notebook in your handbag will be handy when you need to take down phone numbers in the car, scribble down article or blog post ideas, or jot down an errand that comes to your mind. You can also do the same with your cell phone.
Life should be simpler and easier. More so, when you’ve gotta deal with everything on your own. Focus on the important – health and happiness. Everything else, laundry included, will fall into place.
How do you make managing home easier when times are challenging?
Photo Credit: mpclemens