I see you, Momma. I see you waking before the rest of the house to empty the dishwasher, start the coffee and get breakfast going. I see the way you look wistfully at the shower, remembering the days when you could soak in the heat and start the day fresh. I see the way you don't even skip a beat when the baby cries down the hall. You were up all night with the two year old, but the baby needs you now and so you pull your hair back and snuggle that baby tight. "I should have gone to bed earlier" you tell yourself. "I'm going to do that tonight." But you and I both know, when the little ones are in bed you will eek out every last drop of no-one-is-touching-me time. The days pass like this. In some blurry haze, they pass. Suddenly you realize it's Saturday again. How did that happen? The week was so long!! Still... How is it already Saturday again?
In the haze and the fog you can lose yourself. You will lose yourself. But there are some things you can do to help. We hear people talk all the time about self care, but what is that really? Is self care a bubble bath? A night out with the girls? Yes. And no. Let's think about the ways you care for your children...
You love your children. Fiercely. No matter what they do. Do you love yourself this way? Are you allowing yourself the freedom to learn? Are you forgiving yourself for lessons you didn't already know? Present, Not Perfect is a journal I have been working on for a few months now. I highly recommend this!! Give yourself some grace! Lord knows you pass it out all day to the others in your life.
How else do you care for your children? You give them bed times, food times, and screen times. You monitor the things their brains and bellies consume. Are you doing the same for yourself? How often are you placing carrots on their plates as you hide in the closet and eat a bar of chocolate? Please, do not misunderstand me!! I am not suggesting in the least that you should live without the small joys. I am only suggesting that self care should in some ways resemble child care. We help our children have healthy minds, bodies and habits because we know they will feel so much better if we do so. Momma. Gurrrrl. You deserve that same care. Self care occasionally means parenting yourself.
Along that same vein, it is okay to admit if you need a little help functioning normally. Especially if you have given birth in the last few years, or more than once, your body is in need of EXTRA. You have performed a massive feat! Treat yourself to some things to help refuel your mind and body! Here are a few products to research--
Plexus: This works on the understanding that a great amount of our well-being can be attributed to our microbiome. Plexus Slim (aka the 'Pink Drink') disrupts the microbes that are helping to keep that extra baby weight on your body through slower metabolism and cravings. I have just finished up several grueling rounds of antibiotics and have ordered this for the first time to help reestablish a healthy system. I am excited to see how the experiment plays out!
Thrive: Give me a plan! I make so many decisions all day long. For all the tiny humans. It is so comforting to have someone just tell me what to do for a change. If you need to hit the restart button on your positive habits, this is a great place to start.
CBD Oil: Ain't nature a beautiful thing? The benefits of CBD oil are well-known. I personally take this to help with anxiety. It seems every birth my post-partum crazy gets worse and lasts longer. I take this particular brand because it comes in a peppermint flavor that tastes AMAZING in my coffee with a bit of cream and sugar free mocha syrup. I am so addicted to the taste at this point, I may keep taking this as flavoring long after the anxiety leaves.
Essential Oils: There is so much information out in the internet world about essential oils. Some of it is hard to believe, but there are a few things I can swear by. Eucalyptus oil is AMAZING! A drop or two (Seriously. This is powerful stuff.) in the bath will help any head cold or stuffy nose. Theives disinfects and smells amazing. Also, if you find a smell you love, get it and stick it in a diffuser. Comparing prices, diffusing oils is way cheaper than burning a candle, and the likelihood of burning your house down because the toddler threw a toy at the wall drops significantly.
Now the "normal" self care stuff. Go ahead! Get the good chocolate, and the good wine. Pour a bath and sit there until you wrinkle. BUY YOUR OWN D@#% FLOWERS AND JEWELRY! Don't wait on your man. Love yourself. If you can, get it from some other Queen who is slaying at this Mom Life. Find something as beautiful and unique as you are that makes your soul happy. Anything from Stranded Stone, basically (Speaking of Queens!!! This lady is as amazing and talented as they come!) Cultivate friendships with women who uplift you, love you and hold you accountable. Allow yourself time to really relax. Even God rested on the seventh day. Who are we to expect Moms to have better stamina than the Lord?
Whew. Getting preachy. Someone push me off this soap box 'fore I hurt myself. I see you, Momma. I SEE you. Put on the Lord's glasses and take a look at yourself. You are loved beyond measure.
I hope our journey inspires your own,
Blessings to you, Mama
Buckets and Berries