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How I Make Time for Myself As a Busy Mom
Every day, I wake up at 6:30am. I get everything ready for my husband’s day. Then I get my kids ready. I drive my eldest to school and then my youngest and I run the errands – supermarket, post office, whatever’s on the “To Do” list. We go home and I start cleaning. Then it’s time to pick my eldest up from preschool at noon. I make the children lunch. I plead with the little one to nap. I send the bigger one to do her homework. And when they’ve finally given me a moment of space somewhere around 1pm, I take that time and work.
When my youngest wakes from her nap, I read to my kids and get them busy on some activities together so I can start preparing dinner. As I cook, I finish cleaning up the best I can with 2 small people running around behind me and messing it right up. Then we go pick up my husband and his bicycle from work. I get dinner ready to go and then I run to the gym for 30 to 45 minutes. And this feels like a vacation.
After dinner, it’s the night time routine – bath, stories and bedtime for my kids. And when they’re finally in bed, I can take a shower and do more work.
When I look at my day like this, I see very clearly that nowhere in there is there really any “ME” time. Except going to the gym. Which I really do enjoy. But out of all the hours in every day, I only use precious little of it on myself. And that’s not good is it?
As it turns out, a dear friend of mine will be in town in a couple weeks for a very major milestone birthday. And I actually turned in complete shock to my husband when he said, “Go ahead and enjoy dinner with your friend. I’ll watch the kids.” For the record, this is the same man who sighs heavily when I bounce out the door to the gym and complains that he had to watch the kids while I exercise because he worked all day. I didn’t realize what I was doing all day was fun.
And you know what? I feel guilty for planning to go. I feel like a jerk for leaving my kids to go out and eat without having to take care of everyone else. I can eat a meal without buttering bread for little hands or cleaning up spilled juice.
But I know I must. And you should too, because if your every day looks anything like mine does, you are seriously overdue for some chill time. I vow to make more time to hide in the bathroom for a bubble bath, go out for dinner with a gal pal while my husband watches the kids, get my nails or hair done at the salon, and otherwise treat myself in the pampered way that I deserve for being the superhero of my family. Let’s strip off these capes and just wear our plain clothes, and in doing so, we’ll be saving lives – our own.