This is where you'll currently find me: Mom to Olivia (27 months) and Joah (three months). Bogged down in motherhood, which I absolutely love .. Don't get me wrong. I've never loved a job more. But I've noticed that I've slowly let every ounce of selfish tendency slip away from my core since becoming a mom. There isn't time for it. I'm too busy giving of myself and ensuring these two precious little beings are cared for in a way they deserve all while doing my best to make sure my husband knows he still has a wife. As a result, my needs are typically met last, if at all. I've placed myself at the bottom of the totem pole. Behind wife and mother comes Becci; the identity I held prior to having children. At times, it's hard to remember who I was before kids.
What I've come to realize is that this isn't healthy. The constant giving and pouring out of my time and energy leaves me feeling empty. As a result, I find myself bitter, crabby and unhappy when I don't carve out a little time to indulge myself. I notice myself becoming short with my toddler, which is never a good thing considering a toddler requires an infinite amount of patience. I start throwing myself pity parties, which means I struggle to accomplish things throughout the day and am just generally in a bad mood. As you can imagine, this version of me is not very much fun to be around (my husband will attest to this)!
The solution? I need to reclaim a bit of my selfish ways. I need to do a better job of asking for what I need. I have no one to blame but myself. My husband doesn't expect I place myself last. It is of my own accord that I've found myself here. I'm no good at making demands of people, but I've discovered I'm not the best ME - wife, mom and individual - when my needs aren't being met. So after being called out by my husband on our recent trip to San Francisco (for not being more vocal about needing breaks, etc.), I've decided that its time to place my focus on speaking up and asking for what I need. [Thank God for the loving, caring man I married and the truth he speaks into our marriage!] Maybe I need an hour to workout at the gym vs at home while my two year old is running laps around me. Maybe I'd like to take a leisurely ride on my bike or go shopping (for something other than diapers and groceries). Maybe I'll pay a visit to my favorite cafe (Urth) for my beloved matcha green tea or maybe I'll just do nothing at all and soak up the silence and stillness around me. The point is it doesn't matter what I do, but that I take time for ME! I know what I need in order to stay sane in this game of parenting and it's time I seek it out on a regular basis.
I understand this won't be easy for me since its a habit that needs breaking and as we all know, old habits die hard. However, I'm committed to becoming better at voicing my needs and seeing that I'm given time to care for myself - physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. I'm excited to rediscover a bit of selfish Becci because I know she will only make me a better mom and wife. I deserve it, my husband deserves it, and my kids deserve it!
Moms, do you ever feel selfish asking for time to yourself? How do you practice self care?