Life can get hectic. Life as a mama? That takes hectic to a whole.new.level. Kids to run, dinner to make, laundry to do, homework to help with, baths to give, and-oh, and don’t neglect your daytime job while your at it! Whew, I think a few more gray hairs sprouted just thinking about it all! Often times during this hectic ride we call motherhood, we get so focused on taking care of everyone else that we end up forgetting to take care of ourselves- but we can’t forget! There are some days that the only me time I get is the .2 seconds I have to pee as soon as I get home from work. And usually that’s not even alone time- there are bound to be children scratching at the door.
At first I felt immense amounts of mom guilt whenever I took some me time. Will dinner go okay? Will the homework get done? I should probably check on them, right? Wrong! They’re fine. Everyone’s FINE. It didn’t take me long to learn that a happy mama makes a happy family. Here are some ways for you to make sure to get YOUR me time in.
Venture to the woods
This is a new one for me. 15 years ago when I met my husband, I knew not the slightest thing about hunting. Nor did I care. After continuously hearing him talk about how hunting isn’t just about the hunt, it’s about appreciating your time in nature, I decided to give it a try. I now find a lot of solitude sitting in a cozy little blind in the middle of the woods watching deer and turkey explore their habitat, listening to the birds chirp and getting an adrenaline rush every time I hear something that resembles a cracking stick from the footstep of a deer. These few silent hours are the perfect opportunity to reflect on life and truly appreciate all you are grateful for. Even if I don’t come home with any meat for the freezer, spending an evening surrounded by God’s beautiful creations is still a win for me.
Not a hunter? Not an excuse! Take a hike through the woods at a local nature conservancy, take a stroll downtown, get outside anyway you can and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature!
Splurge on yourself
Anyone who has kids knows that shopping with them is, well let’s face it, it’s hell. Shopping has always been one of my favorite hobbies (it does qualify as a hobby, right?) that is until I had kids. Most of my purchases are done online now just to avoid the catastrophe of a disaster that awaits us as we walk through the entrance of the store. Screaming kids who all of a sudden need everything in sight OR miraculously have to go to the bathroom even though they just went before leaving the house..no thank you. Once in awhile take the time to go shopping FOR yourself BY yourself. If you’re like me so many times I attempt to do this and get side tracked with items that I just know my girls would love. Usually by the end of the trip the girls scored a plethora of new outfits and I walked away with my free pair of panties from Victoria’s Secret. Sometimes I have to force myself to put blinders on and walk past the kids section at Target and head straight to the shoes and handbags where I’m sure to find something to splurge on.
Drinks with the girls
Grab a few other mommy friends and head out for drinks- that way you can all feel the mom guilt together! This is one of my favorite ways to get in some me time, although it seems the hardest to fit in with everybody’s crazy schedules. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve left a girls night thinking “Oh my Lord, my family is normal, maybe we’re actually doing something right!” It’s so refreshing to be able to sit and chat with other mommies about those things no one ever talks about- the tantrums, the talking back, your kid refusing to wear jeans because they feel funny. Oh, other kids do those things too? Huh, thought it was just my two beauties. All of these crazy conversations come out during a girls night and you walk away feeling 100% better about yourself.
Take the time to get your hair done. Enroll in that yoga class. Pay the extra money and get the pedicure. Bite your lip and make the massage or facial appointment. I feel like a million bucks and like I can conquer the world every time I walk out of one of these appointments. And if I can conquer the world, I can sure as hell conquer my two children running around like banshees when I get home.
Mama’s Night In
Strapped for cash? Still not an excuse. Put the kids to bed early, pour a glass of vino and pop in your favorite chick flick. Take the time to laugh at the cheesy comedy and escape the piles of laundry- it will be there tomorrow.
I had always loved writing. Then I went to college and hated it. Then I went to grad school and hated it even.more. Being forced to write paper after paper on educational theories and practices really fizzled out my passion for written expression. Recently after going through a miscarriage, I decided that reigniting my love for writing was one way I was going to get some me time back. Starting a blog had always been on the horizon for me, but after some encouragement from a long lost friend I decided to dive in head first. I have no clue what will come of this little escape, but in the meantime, I’m enjoying the me time.
Ditch the mom guilt and take some me time. The best version of you is the best mama for your family. Take care of yourselves mommies, it’s a tough job to raising little miracles, but somebody’s got to do it.
What is your favorite escape to ensure you get some me time in? Let us know in a comment!
~Mama in the Mitten