Guest post by Rachel Pace.
Image courtesy of alex_ugalek at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I remember when I got pregnant with my first child. Many of my friends told me to “make the most of it now – you’ll have no time after the baby is born!” It seemed like I needed to take that holiday, go to that cookery class, and read that stack of books right now, because if I didn’t I wouldn’t get another chance for 16 years or so.
I didn’t believe them, of course. Sure I knew everything would change once I became a mom, but my husband and I were well organized. We’d read the books. We had a plan. We’d talked about availing family offers to babysit, so we could retain a little sanity.
I Started Losing Myself
Any of you moms reading this know exactly where I’m going.
My friends were absolutely right. As soon as the baby arrived, hobbies, self care, and free time were all things of the past. I was so caught up in motherhood that at first I didn’t really realize how much I was slipping away.
Being a wife and mom was my identity, and I was fine with that. I loved taking care of the baby, and as time passed we had another kid, I loved being there to pack them off to pre-school, fix their meals and admire their art masterpieces. My husband and I were a pretty good team, and I was confident we had this parenting thing down.
Pretty soon though, I started to notice how tired I was getting. I felt irritable a lot more than I used to. I found myself yearning for just a bit of time to myself. I couldn’t remember the last time I got my nails done, or ate a meal that wasn’t a hurried affair in between stopping the munchkins from mashing peas into their hair and dumping carrot soup on the floor.
“Me” Time Is Actually Really Good For Your Family
I realized that if I wanted to keep my sanity, I had to make some changes. Along the way I learned something that I wish someone had told me, and that I’m really glad to share with you now: Taking some “me” time is actually really good for your family.
Think of it this way. When you’re strung out and stressed out, your family really doesn’t get the best of you. Your kids and husband deserve the best version of you – and so do you.
It’s much easier to be a wife and mom when you feel good and your own needs are being nurtured, too. You know the old saying that you can’t pour from an empty vessel, and it’s so true.
Make It Part Of The Routine
The best way to find time for yourself is to make it part of your daily routine. Kids thrive on routine, so building it in to your routine is the best way for both of you.
Set aside half an hour every day for “Mommy time.” Depending how old your kids are it might be an hour, or maybe just a half an hour or fifteen minutes. Set an alarm and let your kids know that it’s their time to play quietly, have fun in the yard, or watch their favorite show.
The trick is to really use “Mommy time” for yourself. Don’t use it to put on a load of laundry or return a phone call. Use it to read a book, listen to music, or partake in your favorite hobby.
Use The “Before” and “After” Time To Your Advantage
Try getting up just 20 minutes before your kids, or make use of the time in the evening after they go to bed. Sure, you’ll have things you need to get done for the next day, and you want to spend time with your husband, too. But don’t forget to build a little ‘me’ time in. Just ten minutes here and there will refresh your spirit and bring you back to yourself.
I didn’t realize when I first had kids how important me time really was. I know now that by setting aside a little time for myself here and there, I’m recharging my batteries and renewing my soul, so my kids and husband get the best of me. After all, how can they enjoy the best version of their wife and mom, if I bury her under a pile of laundry and dirty dishes?
Being a wife and mom is rewarding, taxing, frustrating, and enlivening by turns. Be kinder to yourself and make a little time daily just for you – you and your family will all benefit.
Author Bio:- Rachel Pace is a relationship expert with years of experience in training and helping couples. She has helped countless individuals and organizations around the world, offering effective and efficient solutions for healthy and successful relationships. Her mission is to provide inspiration, support and empowerment to everyone on their journey to a great marriage. She is a featured writer for Marriage.com, a reliable resource to support healthy happy marriages.