For the longest time, I felt that if I was not allowing my children to be constantly up my butt, I was a bad mom. So, I went on the obligatory play dates, the "Mommy and Me" sessions galore and even went so far as to be a volunteer in my daughters schools. Heck, I was so much the "supermom" when my daughters were in Kindergarten that I would regularly weather sub-zero temperatures on my mile-long trek to their classrooms, daily. Yet, after six years, I found myself on the verge of burnout. That was when I met Carrie, and what she taught me changed my life.
Before I met Carrie, there was a seed already planted by my vocal coach. He told me that when you are in an airplane and cabin pressure falls, that the pros on the plane tell you to breathe from the oxygen mask first for yourself, and then pass it on to your loved ones. Why did he tell me to do this? Because, he as a father had learned long ago that if you wanted to properly care for your loved ones, you have to take care of yourself first.
Then came Carrie, mother of three. Two of her children were older than mine, and the third was around the same age as my twins. As they played together on sunny New York afternoon, Carrie asked, "When was the last time you got out, away from the kids?"
I looked at her as if she had hit me upside the head with a frozen fish. I had been so wrapped up in my kids for so long, that I had stopped taking time for myself. In fact, I hadn't been "away" from my kids in six years. The concept was so foreign to me, that I could only look at her, with a gaping jaw.
"I see," she said, wisdom in her tone. "What you need is some mommy time, away from your kids."
And I did. From that point on, Carrie and I were inseparable. We played together and went out once a week for "whine night". On these evenings, we would patronize a local pub and enjoy some wine, along with some whining. It was a release I desperately need. I realized that time out with my husband was grand, but time out with other mom's was food for my soul.
Everyone Needs a Breather
From Carrie, I learned that I had to take respite; I needed a breather or two. I required time where my kids weren't up my rear end 24/7 in order to function as a better mother.
It was from this life lesson that I began learning how to foster being a woman first, before I went back to being a mom. Taking "me" time, saved my sanity and actually wound up helping me be an even better mom for my kids. After all, they couldn't miss me if I was always there.
When was the last time you took some "me" time?
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