There is nothing like being a parent to keep you humble. I had awesome plans for this month and one little hiccup in my mom-game brought it all crashing down around my ears. And I crashed hard friends.
At the end of January I was riding high. I had launched this blog and I was just thrilled to pieces with how the first month went. Of course there was room for improvement but man did I think I was off to a roaring start. The world was my oyster and all that cliche stuff. I had so much confidence in my ability to be a mom and a wife all while balancing a full time job (plus hour commute each way) and blogging consistently three times a week. My goals for the year were coming along nicely and it was going to be a good year.
Then Oliver got an ear infection and pink eye. And Charlie came home from the field. Now of course I love having Charlie home…but spending time with my husband takes away from the time I had been using for blogging, exercising, and all that while he was gone. Again. Totally a trade I am willing to make. But when added to the fact that Oliver couldn’t go to day care, I was left without the free time I rely on to get things written and pictures taken.
It has been truly humbling to be knocked back so quickly by such a seemingly small thing.
This is the buzz word of the moment but it’s something that I didn’t pay enough attention to over the past couple weeks. This blog (and all the social media that goes along with it) is my passion project. It is fun for me and I truly enjoy it. I am a creative person and I need a creative outlet. My job doe not provide that and Oliver is still a little young for in depth arts and crafts, so this is my happy place.
And I let it go. I stopped making time in the day to sit down and write. There was no time set aside for taking pictures and doing the things that bring me joy. I let the “needs” of my family completely overwhelm me. While I wouldn’t trade being able to be home taking care of Oliver, I realize now that I wasn’t taking care of myself. I have been so tired and just generally not feeling well…and just yesterday I realized that I did not know that last time I drank a glass of water. Now we all know my coffee obsession is strong, but I have been living on it for weeks and that is not good.
So today I am writing. And drinking so much water. I am going to get dressed and get out of the house. Sure this is in part because Oliver is finally able to go back to daycare, but I am making the most of it.
Moving Forward – and learning
To start with, I am giving myself some grace. I am reminding myself that I do not have to be perfect and I do not have to do it all. Asking for help is ok.
Going forward, I am also going to make taking care of myself a priority rather than pushing it to the back burner whenever I have a lot going on. Because the times when there is a lot going on is when I need to take care of myself the most.
That all sounds good and well…but how does it actually happen? For me, the first step is making time. I am going to start going to bed a little earlier so I can get up a little earlier. If I give myself a chance to sit and drink my coffee and write before I have to get ready for work I know it will dramatically improve my mental health. Getting up earlier is defiantly easier said than done of course. I already have to get up at 5:00 AM to get to work on time…but I am going to bump it back to 4:30 and go from there. Because even half an hour is infinitely better than no time at all!