As moms we are programmed to think of and nurture others before ourselves. I spend about 90 percent of my day thinking about what I need to do for my kids and husband. But from past experience I have learned that it is also very important to take care of myself.
Back in November and December I learned the hard way that I must be a little selfish and put myself first. While visiting my in-laws for Thanksgiving I was hospitalized for severe stomach pains. After undergoing several tests and staying at two separate hospitals the doctors concluded that I had an unknown virus that was causing my liver not to function properly. My liver enzymes were through the roof and I had to take a special medication before I ate to prevent an attack.
From this experience I learned that I must put myself and my health first so I can have the energy to take on my most important role, mother and wife. Below are a few steps that you can take to make sure you get plenty of me time.
1. Schedule it on your calendar.
Set aside one afternoon or evening during the week to spend on yourself. Take that time to go for a run, go to the gym, attend a class or just take a long leisurely bath. If it is on your calender make it a habit every week. Make sure you discuss your plan with your husband. Tell him that it is important for you to have time for yourself so he needs to be available to take care of the kids then.
2. Wake up a half an hour before your kids get up.
I set my alarm clock for 6am which is 20 minutes to a half an hour before my kids get up to get ready for school. I take that time to brew my coffee, read my Bible and say the rosary. This extra time to myself before the craziness starts makes my day so much easier. You can spend that time however you like. Read a book or the newspaper, drink your morning coffee by yourself, or just take a shower before your kids and husband get up.
3. Join a moms group.
I am a member of my local MOPS organization (Mothers of Preschoolers). We have monthly meetings during the school year, play dates and other social events. Through MOPS I am able to form meaningful friendships and get a break away from my kids.
If you are feeling overwhelmed and stressed out take a step back and think about how much time you are really spending on you. If it isn’t much set up a plan and discuss it with your husband before you end up in the hospital like I did.
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