That’s a foreign concept around here. Taking care of me? What does that look like? Do you invest time in yourself as a woman or are you so busy feeding the kids, changing diapers, doing laundry, and spending time with your husband that you forget about yourself?
I’ve been struggling with finding time for myself recently. We joined the gym, and I’ve been going regularly. I get there at least 2 or 3 mornings a week and I work my tail off. I confess, I take full advantage of the childcare and I enjoy the shower with never ending hot water and no little ones fighting or calling for mommy. While I do enjoy that time, I’m usually feeling pretty worn down from my work out, and then I get to go pick up the toddler and carry her across the street to the office and then up the 4+ flights of stairs to our office. Really, it’s exhausting. I often wonder how I did this 30 pounds ago, because I am often so winded by the time I reach the office, I plop down on the couch and don’t move! After I get some work done I’m off to pick up Ashleigh from school, make dinner, clean the house, do the laundry….You get the idea.
Maybe your day looks a little different than mine, but in reality, it’s about taking care of your family, mothering your children, dishes, laundry, cooking, cleaning, and if there is any time left over, maybe taking a few minutes of quiet to unwind. I find that by the time the kids are in bed and enough of my to do list is done that I don’t feel like a slug, I’m off to dream land. Then I get up and start all over. That does sound familiar doesn’t it?
In my world, when this happens day after day I become more and more frustrated. My temper gets shorter, my tolerance gets lower, and I become less happy with my surroundings. Clearly this is not best for my family. They deserve a happy mom and wife, and someone who can be tolerant and loving. I want to be loving and tolerant. I want them to know how thankful I am for them. But when I don’t take care of me, I have a hard time expressing that.
I’ve learned that I get to a point where I have to take some time for me, and some time for my husband. If I take the time to take care of myself and I take some time with my husband, I’m a much happier person. When I’m happier, I’m more patient with my kids and they deserve that! Heck, we all deserve that.
As I could feel my stress level rising, and my fuse shortening yesterday I told my husband that I needed some time before his next trip. If I’m going to survive a week on solo parenting duty I need to recharge first. So tomorrow I’m heading out for a pedicure. I can’t wait to have pretty toes and an hour to myself. I may even stop at Starbucks on the way for a skinny latte!
Do you know your signs that you need some recharge time? How do you handle making time for yourself?