What I Learned As a Mom One Month After Unplugging the TV
So, I may have lost my cool a few weeks back. Nothin' too crazy, but boy, I was fed up! Summer just started, my kids were fighting like cats + dogs, and I was trying to navigate this new work from home thing with all of the kids home!
I thought it started off a pretty typical day. The kids usually get up and watch a show or two before getting breakfast, but not this day. They were fighting over EVERYTHING from what episode to watch to who got to hold the remote + how loud they thought it should be and I had finally had it.
A friend told me a few weeks prior that she was watching a Dr. Phil episode or something of the sort, I really can't remember, but she said they talked about how long it takes for kids to unwind and how it affects them. Now I'm not going to pretend that I remember all of the stats to give you but I will say that it struck a cord.
So, let's go back to the weeks leading up to the day mama lost it! School gets out, the kids are figuring out how to be around each other 24/7 again + me trying to work while being overstimulated.
Yes, there have been many days that I have allowed my kids to watch way more hours of TV than they need but hey, ya gotta do what ya gotta do some days right?
Anywho, I had been listening to them fight all morning about all the things and I was done! I had really been contemplating this decision for several weeks because they tend to fight over the same things with the TV over and over again so it was a pretty easy decision to hop off of my chair, waltz out of my office + across the living room and nonchalantly rip that cord right out of the wall. I looked at them, told them to find something else to do and waltzed right back to my office to finish what I needed to get done! They looked a little stunned at first and then quickly disappeared. I'll admit, I don't lose my temper often and I believe they got the hint that mama was sitting right on the edge + giving me any form of resistance at this moment would prove detrimental.
We are now three and a half weeks in and here are a few things I have learned:
• The fighting has decreased substantially! Hale-freakin-lujah friends because this mama brain wasn't sure how much more it could endure! What's even better is the fact that my eleven year old even commented on the fact that they have been fighting less!
Now, we are working on boundaries that will allow me 1-2 hours of uninterrupted time during the day to work so I can play with the kids for a few in the afternoon.
• The kids are acting with more intention. They choose to go outside and play and when it gets hot, they pull out board games or read a book for a bit.
• Their imaginations run a little more wild. I hear them all making up imaginary names, playing school, hunting, farm, and diving in completely to whatever it is they are doing at that time. It has been so fun to listen to them play + one of these days I promise to try and capture it on camera.
• It has pushed us to be more intentional with our time as parents. Dustin and I used to sit down after putting the kids to bed and watch a show together to unwind from the day. Since starting our journey with The Hunting Fam, this has pushed our old habits aside and caused us to begin new ones that include watching a how-to or self-improvement class to help us along the way.
Really, it just seems like too much work to get up and plug all of the cords I unplugged back in and wait for everything to kick on! ha It's so much quicker to pull out the Ipad and click on a podcast or class that I have saved on my Creative Live app!
• Many of you may not know that we love hunting with our hounds. My husband is an avid hunter and I'm just getting my feet wet, but the journey we began has allowed me to continue with my passion for photography + pushed us to provide more opportunities to get outside and do more as a family. (pictured below is our family time spent running the dogs).
Now that we are to this point, I can honestly say that I am terrified at the thought of even plugging it back in. I mean, it is summer so playing outside is easy to do right now... perhaps I'll update ya once winter hits if I haven't sold the dang thing by then ;)
All I've gotta say is that I am SO glad we have become disconnected. I've seen a change in habits within our entire family that I feel will allow us to reach goals we have set for ourselves + I don't see the point in turning back now. It's crazy the things you can accomplish once you realize you can live without something. That is all it takes to develop new habits + chase your dreams is the decision as to what you are willing to give up to make it happen. For us + our goals, it was the TV because we would get lost in it and waste too much time.
Has anyone else gotten rid of their TV? I'd like to hear how it's working for you!