“Me” time is so very rare in the Land of Mom.
I have four small kids ranging in age from two to nine, and their needs are certainly plentiful. On top of the demands of my children, I have the house, the work, and the hubs. These days, I am everyone’s everything. There never seems to be a second where someone or something doesn’t need me. Except one person is not getting any attention.
That person is yours truly.
Sure, I skip out every few months to the salon and have my grays and roots covered. Maybe I pop into the occasional clothing store and buy myself new earrings or shoes. Of course, the elusive ladies night gives me a good reason to jazz myself up and spend a few hours sipping adult beverages and talking with my entourage.
All of these self-care sporadics are fine and dandy, but I’m finding that they’re really not enough. I have found that simple moments of “me” in between the big events can help sustain and carry me through the long, demanding days of parenthood.
Here are a few suggested secret “me” moments:
Steal your kids’ snacks
After the kids are tucked into their beds, I become the ultimate snack thief. I creep downstairs and help myself to their fruit snacks or maybe a package of mini muffins. Heaven forbid I eat these goods in front of them. They would flip their tiny little lids.
There is something so soothing about standing in the dark, silent kitchen at the end of the day, peacefully eating a pudding cup.
Purge their crap
I don’t know about you, but the clutter of kid crap makes my blood pressure spike. When it really gets to me and I start seeing piles of junk in my sleep, I will walk through the house pitching their junk.
Lock yourself in a room and just throw stuff away. It’s invigorating, empowering, and will restore your mom-soul, I swear. Good-bye McDonald’s toys, birthday party trinkets, bouncy balls, and broken jewelry. Into the black trash bag you go. Never to be missed nor seen again.
Amazon Prime away your time
I wonder if any studies have been done in regards to online shopping as it relates to the mental health of mothers?
When I’m feeling too tired to drag the kids out to Target, or just far too annoyed to enjoy their company at the mall, I turn to Amazon Prime. Click a few buttons and feel your mouth turn up into a smile. You have a brand new something coming to your door in just a few days. It’s like Christmas for Mommy, and no one else.
Come to think of it, I might indulge in a bit of Priming this afternoon.
Exercise your stress off
Now let’s not get all carried away here. We’re not talking marathon running or high impact aerobics. No. We are talking hide in the basement, turn on your favorite Netflix show, and lob around on the treadmill.
If you truly hate the treadmill, at least turn it on so that your family thinks you are jogging. The other day I watched one-and-a-half shows all by myself while “running” on the treadmill. Halfway through, I stopped my jog to eat some of my kids’ Easter candy they had left downstairs.
Yes, I eat chocolate on the treadmill. This is me time. Do it.
Being the center of everyone’s universe is a double-edged sword: truly the greatest blessing one can experience as well as the most taxing, stressful, and exhausting experience. If you hope to survive it, not to mention find joy in it, then you need to care for yourself.
Indulging in unconventional means of self-care has been the golden ticket to my sanity. What are your secret mom moments?