Yesterday I had an epiphany. I put my five year old and 15 month old sons to sleep. My husband just came home from work late after being stuck changing a flat tire. When he came home, he was exhausted and was in his “zone”. He seemed to be really focused on something and all I could see was him clicking away on the laptop and looking up Bible scriptures. After being married for four years, I can tell when he needs a moment to himself so I said OK let him “do him”. I went upstairs and sat on my bed and was thinking, OK I don’t have any books to read or feel energized enough to clean something right now so what am I going to do…That is when it dawned on me that (I’m so embarrassed to say this but…) I have no life other than my children and my husband! Everywhere I go my children are with me and when my husband comes home from work, most times we’re going somewhere together. So I’m rarely alone.
It’s kind of a hurtful thought. I was like, oh my goodness, I’m like a loner! (So the pregnancy hormones kicked in and that’s when I felt like, woe is me and started crying. Hahahaahah! Don’t laugh at me people, I know I’m such a sap sometimes but I can’t help it right now!) I think as mothers and women we have a natural ability to nurture and care for our families without ever once thinking about ourselves but when that time comes when the kids are older and leaving the nest or just spending time with friends, we can begin to realize that we lost a major piece of the puzzle along the journey of motherhood and wife/couplehood, which is ourselves. After all, if we don’t feel our best than we can’t give our best selves to the ones we love. And so, I know that’s not what I want for me so something has got to change…
So I was reading some other blogs for inspiration and came across this one post that really resonated something within me and gave me motivation for taking time for me. She was talking about the movie TinTin when he felt discouraged and began to call himself a failure. She said that what Captain Haddock said to TinTin seemed like a message to her and after reading it, I was like oh my gosh that’s me too! I do have a horrible habit of putting myself down and saying negative things about myself, telling myself that something is too hard to do or won’t work for me so then I thought how in the heck am I going to take time for me and reinvent my old self (or build a new me) if I can’t even enjoy my own company properly! I’m like my own worst critic (see what I mean!).
So I thought that I would copy off her and make the same vow to myself to not say anything negative about myself but I’m going to add something to mine…I will also vow to do something for myself and by myself at least once a week. Now how exactly am I going to find time to do that is another matter but…it’s worth a try! So I’ve been brainstorming some ideas of things that I could do to spice up my alone time and make time for me, here goes:
- Read a saucy novel
- Take a steamy bath with candles and bubble bath…ALONE
- Watch a sappy movie that you’re hubby won’t watch with you (if you’re into those kinds of movies…I am!)
- Make an elaborate dessert that is really fattening but oh so good! (make an individual sized version so you won’t gain too many calories ;))
- Walk or sit outside near beautiful trees and just enjoy the breeze or read your novel (even if the kids have to be playing nearby)
- Do something that you’ve been afraid to do for forever
- (May sound cheesy but…) Make a friend, not an acquaintance or associate but someone new that you can call when down
- Take a chance on more things and drop the excuses for why you can’t
- Jog before the sun comes up and enjoy the lack of noise outside
- Write a song, poem, or story about yourself
- Make a list of reasons of why you are worth loving
- Respect yourself and don’t be afraid to admit when something is not OK to you or for you (and don’t feel bad about it)
So that’s what I have…what do you think? Any ideas on how to take time for yourself?