Motherhood is a courageous trek. A them before you most of the time because tummies are hungry and here is another teaching moment and I spilled this and time for baths and up and doing it again the next day. It truly takes a warrior-mama to get up and rumble.
I was sweating to The Art of Greatness Podcast with Lewis Howes the other day and he was interviewing Micheal Hyatt and Micheal was talking about his priorities. He puts God first, self second, wife third and kids fourth.
I immediately starting "yes-ing" to each word following.
....I have to take care of myself so I can take care of my wife, my kids. So I can be the best version of myself for them and for me...
O my gosh, I couldn't agree more. I become grumpy and resentful when I am pouring myself out empty and forgetting to fill back up. I become a bitter servant. I start asking, "but who is supposed to take care of me?!" I put this in quotes because I am quoting myself, I have truly pouty-lipped and asked my husband this question. It's fine.
But HOW?! How in the world in this life-giving season do I possibly "fill up" without just getting emptied and interrupted the next moment?
Is it even possible?
My answer is yes and no. lol. Read on.
I honestly think having babies/toddler/youngins waddling around the house is one of the most sacrificial times of life. Your sleep is gone, your boobs are gone, your life is in some ways GONE. So how?! How do I take care of myself while in this life stage?!
I believe this is true, I believe you MUST find a little self care. It's a must.
I think there is a little bit of room for you to fill er up. To find that joy, to learn, challenge, thrive, sing, dance, feel like YOU again.
You just have to FIND IT and Prioritize it. Realizing and believing it's important, you may have to fight for it too.
Here is what has helped me FILL UP. Take it or leave it and please tell me your tips and tricks.
1. Send a letter of encouragement to a friend, cheer them on..fill them up and feel it fill you up too.
2. Sign up for a fitness class or race (I am running a 1/2 on the 13th of August! Eeek!)
3. Take a day to journal. Ask God to show you things that make you feel alive. Write those things down throughout your day and from your list, make an action plan.
4. Set goals. It will help with purpose and self care. When you have free time, work on your goals don't just sit in front of the tv (That's for after you have worked a bit on your goals)
5. Schedule self care time. Just put it on the calendar and fill the time with something later. Get someone to watch your babies for a few hours...even if that sounds stressful, I promise you..it's worth it. Take an entire day off if you can. Turn of your phone if you can. Head to water with a book and a smile if you can.
6. Remember your kids don't define you. Jesus, who happens to adore the pants off of you defines you and you are also your OWN PERSON who has needs and desires and goals. You can take care of yourself and your babies too. I promise. Let the load be lifted a bit that you aren't in control of their every move, encourage autonomy in their life by showing them you also value independence in your own life.
7. When you do take time for yourself, don't apologize. Release the mom guilt and remind yourself that YOU ARE IMPORTANT!
Sometimes we forget who we are when someone is nursing milk out of our chest while the other is wide-eyed waiting for you to plan their day. It takes intentionality and a bit of effort to take care of yourself, but I think it really is worth it.
(Disclaimer: the entire first year is pretty much give give give as far as motherhood goes..in my opinion. It wasn't until my youngest hit 1 year that I could actually see some light and start setting goals for myself)
So, be YOU. Whether that's waking up early for a yoga class or going back to school. If it's scheduling yourself a hotel night away ALONE or writing or reading that book YOU want to do, I give you permission. Go BE YOU, SISTER!
Permission to BE YOU and live YOUR life. I believe if you are actually living yours, you will be able to celebrate others living theirs. If you are filled up, you can pour out with grace and love and truth.
How will you take care of yourself today?
All my love,