Handling the Hustle and Bustle of the Holidays
Mom and Dad set the tone at home during the holidays.
We often think about how our children will experience the holiday season, but what about Mom and Dad? The holidays can be the most joyful, yet stressful time of the year. And, sometimes it isn’t the kids we really need to worry about, but ourselves! How parents handle the holiday season will have a direct impact on what their kids take away. And since the holidays can be an especially magical time for little ones, it’s important that parents remember to take a deep breath and enjoy the ride.
Here are a few tips to ensure a more relaxing holiday season:
- Try not to take it all so seriously. The holidays will happen whether we’re “ready or not.” Sit back and remember to enjoy the season. Also don’t forget that the traditions your family celebrates are all routed in another meaning – and they usually don’t involve parties and gifts! Try to remember why we honor the holidays in the first place.
- Give yourself – and your family – a break by not over scheduling social commitments, gatherings and festivities. When you try to do too much, you risk missing it all.
- Build in couples-only time for you and your spouse to “take five” and sneak away for a reprieve from the holiday madness. Arrange for a babysitter, family member or friend to watch your children and enjoy a solo dinner or even a stroll through your neighborhood to catch the holiday lights.
- Remember that for your little ones, the holidays are already filled with awe and joy because they’re different from the routine. Many parents try to too hard to make it all special when it already is. The only thing for parents of children who have Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) issues to keep in mind is to shelter their little ones from noisy parties; the over-stimulation of lights, music and commotion; and unfamiliar family members that hug, kiss and touch kids who may be uncomfortable with that kind of attention. By being aware of the “sensory world,” parents can help their children to be more at ease, and, in turn, can ensure a more relaxed holiday experience for the whole family.
- Try to grab a little extra sleep, take a warm bath, indulge in one extra treat at the buffet table, and – if you can afford the time and cost – let yourself be pampered, even if it’s only for one hour. Even parents deserve a little something extra from Santa because the joy of the season should always come for grown-ups too!