If there is one thing that I have learned about motherhood, it’s that you need to take care of yourself. Almost 100% of the time, we put every single person, place, and thing before ourselves. In doing this we get run down, frustrated easily and feel like we are spinning in circles. This alone should make you want to run for the hills but how come it doesn’t? Why is it so hard for us moms to take a few moments for ourselves? To relax, to rejuvenate, eat hot food, sip a nice glass of wine and have a conversation that doesn’t have the word potty or lovey in it. It’s so hard because #momguilt is a real thing.
We become mothers for a reason. To bring these beautiful babes into the world, take care of them and raise them into wonderful people. It’s really hard to leave that. Especially for myself being a mom who works outside of the home, I struggle with it daily. Weekends and evenings are my time with my kids and when I have to choose, I feel awful. I quickly realized that there are 3 stages of mom guilt and many emotions that go along with each.
The 3 Stages of Mom Guilt
1. Should I Go?
Whether you get an invite to dinner or you have to get your hair cut and coloured, you think about all of the reasons why you shouldn’t go. “I can just make dinner at home.” “It’s been a year since I got my hair done, what’s a few more months?” “Will the kids be ok without me?” Every thought will cross your mind, except for the most important one. “YES, I SHOULD GO!”
2. Maybe This Won’t Be So Bad…
After hours in your own head, you finally talk yourself in to saying yes. You realize that one night without seeing the kids won’t make them forget you. You know that you deserve this time to yourself and this party you are invited to holds some new friendships that you have desperately been seeking. You think about all of the fun scenarios in your head and decide to go with those and do something outside of the mom bubble that you have been in for so long.
3. Let’s Do This Again Next Week!
Half way through some great conversation and a glass of wine, you realize you feel lighter, energized and proud of yourself that you can still “adult.” You can still laugh, make jokes and get along with people that aren’t 2 feet tall with snot running down their nose. It suddenly clicks in that THIS is what you have been missing. THIS fellowship, THIS fun, THIS night away from the home. THIS right here is what recharges your batteries as a mom and makes you remember that you are a person with needs too. THIS is a great thing for you and ultimately your family. When you are taking care of yourself, you are thriving in all aspects of your life, especially your most important role…mom.
Now, go do something for you and do it without any guilt…until next week. Then the stages start all over again but at least every time you end up at stage 3 a lot quicker!