Do you ever worry? Are you finding yourself concerned with the day-to-day routine? What will I make for dinner, how long will it take to help the kids with their homework, how will I pay for this bill or medical expense? It is understandable, and you are not alone. As parents, we often have to grapple with finding balance in a seemingly chaotic experience we call “home life.” It can be tough, but you are not alone!

In the city of San Diego, California, several agencies, and organizations collaborate with families so they can attain that balance, often at little or no cost to the family. Different resources like food and housing assistance, daycare, or afterschool care, even family and marital counseling are readily available.

Unfortunately, advertising and for these agencies is limited. So that you can receive these resources free, some organizations will forego all paid advertisement opportunities and grow primarily on word of mouth.

Since social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest are free, word of mouth takes second place. In order for word of mouth to be most successful, people must open their mouths about issues that are important to them. More than just entertainment, religion, or politics, we must begin to broach difficult topics that affect each one of us, especially parents. Pregnancy Care Clinic offers a parenting class and a Moms Helping Moms program where you can share with teachers and other new parents.

Let us digress for a moment and consider again, what we often worry about as parents. What matters most is our kids, the security and stability we provide for them, also our impact on their lives. We sometimes place ourselves second to these things and forget that an empty container cannot pour out water.

Difficult as it may be, we must learn to take care of our whole selves first. In doing so, we are able to take care of others from a whole stance, thereby promoting wellness in their lives as well. One great way to take care of the whole self is to talk about what is going on in your life. Share with a friend some of the concerns or feelings you may have about your kids, your ability to provide for them, even discuss what you feel your current impact is on their lives. I have found that feelings of loneliness dissipate when I openly express these feelings to someone else. Some people wait for the discussion to start before they share how they really feel.

Another great way to take care of the whole self is to utilize some of the many different resources that are available within your neighborhood. Below, you will find links to some agencies and organizations that provide services and resources at little or no cost to you. Take advantage of them, or tell someone you know about them. Every individual has the ability to affect another individual, just one person at a time.

Finally, do not be afraid to spend some time by yourself in prayer or thoughtful meditation. What does this mean in a practical sense? Moreover, how can you put this into practice? A great way to start is writing down your prayers. We may not always have time to sit and pray at the moment something happens, but if we write down what we need the solution to be, we have the chance to release the potential stress in that area. We are giving our mind the break it needs to have a second look at the problem, thus providing an opportunity for you and God to work out or develop a solution.  Moreover, we are leaving room for God to help us through our fears, concerns, or worries on the matter. Left in His hands, most problems become praise reports!

So, if you will, digress with me one more time. Let us consider those things we worry about again (school, kids, work, finances, etc.). Now, find someone to start a conversation with about it. Do you know what happened just then? You took a step towards eliminating worry and smoothed out a wrinkle in this seemingly chaotic masterpiece of an experience we call “home life.” Well done.

– Brianna Thomas, MHA