Love Your Selfie: Mom Edition
“You owe yourself the love that you so freely give to other people”
The other day I mentioned out loud, “I was thinking I should start turning my phone off for a few hours every 2 weeks for a manicure and pedicure, and just collect my thoughts and organize my time”. Believe it or not I was met by my adult children in panic, “Wait, what if we need you?”
We, as mothers often hold ourselves to unreasonable standards and expectations. I have found that without even realizing or some women even unknowingly do their best to live up to the ideals of the Proverbs 31 woman. She was the original Goal Digger and #bosslady! Over the years when I felt overwhelmed as a mother or a woman I would read the chapter and do my best to draw strength from her. That in itself could be overwhelming. She did it all and made stuff happen. How? How did one woman accomplish so much in the same 24 hours I had been given and remain joyful, clear minded and pleasant to those around her? What did she sacrifice in order to make like the best she could for her family and her home? Shower. Did anyone ever read where she took a bath or did anything for herself? If you scan through Proverbs 31:10, you will gather that she is strong in character and lacks nothing of value. She rises when it is dark, selects fine things and works eagerly, then to top it off she makes a great meal for her family. She buys fields, plants vineyards and makes a profit. Her arms are strong from work and she will stay up until the black of night. *She is clothed in fine linen and purple. Stop. What? This is important because it is in this verse, Proverbs 31:12, that we uncover that she did think of herself and put her needs as a priority. Whether you find peace of mind in dressing up in fine linens, going to a nice restaurant, date night, a weekend getaway, reading a book, a Netflix series, mani/pedi or a weekly bible study. Find, NO MAKE, that time to recharge.
This is an area I fell short in as a mother, especially in raising girls. Children learn by example and what they learned from me is that once you are a mother, you are no longer important to yourself...making you become unimportant to others. If you do not respect yourself how do others learn to respect you.
I have found in my own parenting experience and in listening to moms tell their stories that many are going down this road or took this exact path. What I mean is this false life of martyrdom some of us push ourselves into. If we take or do anything for ourselves then we are taking away from our children, but if we never take a break, never do anything for ourselves and tell everyone how we give give give to our children, then we will win Mother of the Year. Surprise!! You will not. You can scream at the top of your lungs and you may not be recognized. Our reward is not here and it is not in this game. One day your adult children will do something surprising independent of you and a warm feeling of success will wash over you. You will smile and sigh in satisfaction, and that my dear mothers, that is your reward!
But until that day comes, you will wake up, pray, get yourself out of bed , workout, shower, get dressed, get your kids up, dressed, fed, walk the dog, pack the lunches, start dinner (crockpots are straight from Heaven), make sure all the lights are off, everything in the house is settled and everything needed for the day and everyone is in the car. You do school drop offs, work, home, dinner, sports and lessons, homework, baths, laundry, dishes, shower and crash into bed. This is just the example of every single thing going right in the day and no one was sick, injured, called out of work, dog did not have an accident in your house, you did not spill coffee down yourself rushing out the door. Then throw in a holiday, birthday party, school project or that thing they call a vacation!! Haha, did you just think about that time you were sick...don’t even try that again.
Now that you are worn out just from hearing all that you have been doing, let’s talk about how to carve out some much needed time to recharge.
1. Map out your days and weeks as best you can.
2. Locate where you can schedule in time for yourself
3. Commit to yourself, do not make excuses.
4. Learn what you are taking time for
5. Be clear with those in your life that this is as important for them as it is for you.
6. Turn the electronics off
7. Keep it positive
8. Then go. Recharge, refuel, and bring them back your be