24 Jul Me for you
Motherhood can be totally overwhelming. The responsibilities are endless and it’s a continuous roll of meals (with a lot of effort in the preparation, very rarely appreciated by the little one consuming the end product!) and sleep times, dressing and undressing, playing trains and dolls and soccer and Duplo. I suppose in a way, it should be consuming. God has chosen us to take care of and raise His children in this lifetime.
But I’m more than just a mother. I am still me. I was me before I was a mother and I’m still me. I have interests and needs and responsibilities outside of being a mother and I’m not fully me if I don’t take time for those things too. What tends to happen though, is that this all-consuming role has a way of creating a guilt that creeps up and speaks untruths to us when we spend time doing things which don’t involve our children. It’s like a little gremlin that sits our shoulders and tells us what terrible mothers we are for taking time for a run without the pram, or a coffee with a friend at a cafe without jungle gyms, or a productive morning at work even though we left home to tears and pleading to not walk out the door. We give, give, give without taking the time to refill the tanks so we have more to give.
What we each have to realize is that we have to prioritize some time for ourselves too. And we have to learn to be ok with doing this without feeling the guilt. We have to sometimes do things that make us feel like us. We have to do some things for us and not for everyone else. It requires a bit of planning to get arrangements in place so we feel content with being away and certain that they’re in good hands without us. It also requires us to actually do it and not just move from one day into the next without taking any time for ourselves.
The point is, we have to spend time doing the things that fill up our tanks. It is essential that these tanks remain well filled to allow us to feel complete and able to give the best of ourselves. It’s when the tanks are empty that we become short tempered, feel out of control, impatient, resentful and harassed. We lose touch of who we are.
Each of us have to come to the point where we can acknowledge and appreciate that it is absolutely necessary for us and our children. I cannot be me without time for just me and it’s not a case of me before you, but rather me for you.