So, it's Monday and the Monday just after most of us turned our clocks back an hour in observance of Daylight's Savings Time - Double Whammy! Yes, this is another transition that can throw your child off! Oh and YES, even if they've done it dozens of times.
Here's the thing, the body's Circadian rhythms tick away, controlling the release of important hormones that affect moods, hunger levels, and the wanting of sleep. When they get thrown out of whack, by springing forward or falling back due to daylight savings time, the human body notices. And we see our kids struggle more at these times.
In addition to hormone release being affected, our children don't have the ability to regulate their emotions very well either. So their mood swings become bigger, their fears about the basics like food are bigger, and their anxiety in regards to sleep overwhelms them. Some people even suffer the effects of debilitating chronic pain. For example, cluster headaches that cause pain for days and weeks at a time can be caused by changes in the circadian rhythms.
Easy fix...be SUPER intentional about the impacts that Daylight Savings Time could be having on your child's ability to be successful this week.
First, wrap your head around the fact that your child has had experiences, lags in development, loss and many impacts of trauma that makes this transition (and many others) distinctively different than what you or your other children might experience - meet him or her right where he/she is at!
Second, be acutely aware of your child's need for consistency when it comes to the basics (food, water, warmth, safety, etc). Make sure you have all your bases covered. Make sure you are prepared in ANY and ALL situations to meet those needs. Like, let's say you get a flat tire...are you ready?
Third, make sure your expectations are attainable. Your child's ability to cope will be compromised. Lessen the number of transitions, decrease the amount of time they are on their own, pull them in across the board. Remember you are their external regulator and they will need your help more right now. Tweak your expectations to match their abilities. (not lower-just tweak)
For most of our kids, their bodies get back to "normal" after a week and for some it could even take two. Your ability to maintain their safety net (you) as a rock solid foundation in the midst of change will absolutely help them to move through it more easily and more quickly.
The struggle is real but you have the power to ease it. Be Intentional my friends!
Remember...you are NOT alone,
P.S. Ever just wanted to be done? I have been there too. You need to know that You ARE a good Mom. That is NOT the problem. This is a long difficult journey and you haven't been equipped with tools that work. It is time to turn it all around; yes, it can be SO much better...let me help! Join me in my Intentional Parent Coaching Group today! http://www.tohavehope.com/intentional-parent-coaching-group1.html