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I had really been needing to devote some time to getting back into my physical fitness goals while also dealing with chores. Last week was the first scratch on that surface. I kept up with the laundry, the dishwasher, shopping needs, some good Bikini Body Mommy workouts, and a run while still managing to spend some valuable time with my baby. But I couldn’t figure out how to do all of that and spend time writing. I decided it would be good to spend some time on developing exposure on older posts while spending valuable time with my growing baby.
Time is flying by. Every time it comes time to go back to work, I mourn the loss of my time off. But it’s back to my days off quicker than I know and the cycle starts over again. I want to enjoy this time with Daenarys as much as I can.
This week is the week leading into Mother’s Day, which I inadvertently managed to get off work. This one will be my first with her on this side of the womb. We are hoping to spend it on the beach, but the weather forecast is not very promising.
But I saw a post the other day on Facebook which turned the traditional tongue-in-cheek saying, “Mama needs a drink” on its head, and I wanted to address it. It leaned heavily on the extreme feminist side as it talked about how mamas really need a paycheck, paid healthcare, childcare, etc., etc. It called for the general society to draw a line between wants and needs.
My response is basically this: much of what they term as “wants” are generally seen as self care, and self care is needed. Check out Sherry’s post here to see how self care changed her as a mama for the better and how it impacted her kids.
So while some of these things may be considered a want to you, to others it is how they unwind and focus on self care so that they can be the best mom, wife, and friend possible. There are way too many critical and judgmental people out there. Moms don’t need more judges and critics. Lets support each other where we’re at. To each his or her own!
Jenn, a colleague of mine, wrote a post on her blog about lifting moms up, and while I wouldn’t necessarily care about a couple of the ideas, it’s just a personal preference. She still has some really good ideas, and the ones I don’t resonate with might still resonate with others. You can check out her full article here, but some of her ideas that I just love include reading the same books and getting your nails done. I love pedicures (I don’t like to get my fingernails done). I used to allow that as my one guilty pleasure before I decided I needed to devote that money towards healthy eating. (Now my one guilty pleasure would be Starbucks on my way to work 3 out of every 4 work days.)
Amber writes an incredible piece here that I love, love, love. Maybe because she specifically addresses exercise. I know, I know, sometimes I just dread getting in that work out. I’m really bad about neglecting it on Thursday evenings after work especially, even though I’m conveniently situated at my sister’s house where I have a workout partner and/or baby distractor. But the feeling of empowerment and confidence you get after completing that workout is AMAZING. It also demonstrates the importance of being healthy and strong (not skinny) to our kids who are watching us and learning from our example. You can talk the talk, but the walk is what is going to make the most lasting impression on them. Mama, DO IT!
Jamilyn talks about struggling as a new mom and how she managed to find the encouragement she needed in her post here. Check out her full post, but one of her points talked about making lists and this is great. As I posted previously here and here, I love writing out a schedule, and when I stick to that schedule, I feel the most productive. And part of making schedules is making lists of things I need to do. I love lists, I love schedules, I love PLANNING! And I love seeing those things get done. You should really give it a try and see how amazing it makes you feel to get those things checked off!
Amy also addresses some ideas for self care in her post here. Self care can be very cheap, inexpensive, and even free. But self care is important. Don’t neglect your mental and emotional health to achieve the external comforts that others deem more important.
What do I do for self care? I enjoy a drink I make at home on Sunday nights once weekly. I’ve started taking some time for myself once a month where I either go out for a drink and time alone, or I go get coffee alone. I work out while my baby is in bed napping and then take her for a run in my jogging stroller (as long as weather permits). I make health conscious meals to take to work with me to save money and fuel my body, and I still enjoy a little chocolate here and there.
As Mary Leigh says in her post here, no one has it all together. It’s okay to be real with people if you’re having a hard time of it. Others may put on a front to make it appear as if they do have it all together, but they have their issues at home. Let them cope how they cope, but be true to yourself and don’t let the doubters and naysayers get you down for being honest.
And you can actually need those “wants,” those self care therapies without judgment. More power to you, Mama!
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