I was listening to the radio the other day and the DJ asked all the male listeners what was the one thing when polled, did women want more than chocolate and trashy tv shows,. Truthfully I guess the answer before the DJ came back and I’m sure most Moms reading this can too – it’s alone time.
As a mama of two young kids, I didn’t get that much time alone. And if I did, it’s usually was filled with cleaning the house or doing office things for Hiker (my husband’s business). That was until I did something about it.
The first thing that I did was that I started running. I really got into running about 4 years ago, that was pre-babies. I had the early mornings free to myself (besides going to work) so it was no problem for me to find time to run. Post babies, this wasn’t as easy. Norah still isn’t sleeping through the night so that means no straight through solid night sleep for me and the idea of taking two kids out in the stroller for a run isn’t appealing and isn’t giving me that alone time that I was craving. The day after finishing Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis, I got up early, 6 am, put on my running shoes and got my run on. And to be honest, it has become my favorite part of the day. Working around Wes’ firefighter schedule is a little difficult and in the past, I would have let that stop me but not now. So on the days that he has to go to the station and will be gone about 36 hours (24 hours firefighting and 12 hours at the shop with Hiker) I get up early and go for a run so I can squeeze it in before he has to leave for work. Going for a run mixed with getting up early and being able to experience the house before everyone else gets up is pretty magical. I know I’m not the first person to write this but maybe there is a reason that everyone is raving about it.
The other self-care act that I’ve been doing lately is taking a bath. I know that a lot of people have a lot of different options on baths but I love them. I took them all the time growing up but since we moved into this house, I haven’t really taken them. Our master bath doesn’t have a bathtub and we have had issues with our guest bathtub. But a few weeks ago, I stopped using those excuses to keep me from taking care of myself. So on Sunday nights (except last Sunday where we had a pooping in the tub accident, not me but one of the kids) after the kids go to bed, I draw myself a bath, put in a nice bath bomb and bubble bath, prop up my laptop to watch a little TV and relax. Sometimes I put a little face mask if I’m feeling fancy.
These two little things, things that I loved before kids. Before I answered to Mama or Mommy more than my own name during the day. Before I made everyone breakfasts, lunches, and dinners before my own. Before my day was started with crying from a monitor. Before I wore so many more hats than just Megan. Bringing these two things back into my life, my versions of self-care is my way of filling my cup so I can fill the other around me. So I can be a better mama, a better wife, a better me.
I’m not gonna lie and say that on days where I do get to go for a run, I don’t have upset or angry or have a bad day. I’m a mom with two young kids, it happens. My family and I are human and we have our rough and emotion-filled days. But getting that 30 minutes of true me time in the mornings fill my cup enough to where I’m more patient, happy and together.
We as mothers do everything for everyone else and honestly it leaving us run down, exhausted and a walking exoskeleton of the person we were before we became a mom. Our internal cups are empty and when your cup is empty, you can’t be your best self, let alone fill anyone else cups so they can be their best self.
So find out what fills your cup, what was your passion before you become a mom or a wife? And make it work, forget about all the excuses that you have told yourself for years that you don’t have the time or money to make it work. If you love getting your nail done, find a cheaper place to get it done, ask for it for a Christmas, birthday or mother’s day gifts or have your friend do your nail and you do hers. When you stop letting the excuses be the reason why you don’t do what makes you happy, what fills your cup, then all is possible.
To all you moms and wives out there reading this, I want you to do one thing today for yourself and yourself alone because honestly, you truly deserve it.