Ah, bliss! It’s a full day of uninterrupted time. The kids are being taken care of, the laundry is washed and put away, the house is sparkling clean, and I am finally getting a chance to relax on the sofa for hours on end. It’s how moms do self-care. Who am I kidding?! That never happens! What does self care really mean for mom?
It’s more like a mad dash to relax for just two minutes before having to move on to the next errand, task, or load of laundry. It’s finding time to just breathe after refereeing yet another squabble and cleaning up after the dog who decided to eat a roll of toilet paper. Self-care for mom could also be called survival of the fittest.
Self Care for Mom
So, what do we fit in in those oh-so-long-seconds of relaxation? It comes down to these four things.
I may or may not lock myself in the bathroom just to have time alone. Truth be told, even there they find me and start calling through the door. Can I make a snack? Will I tell their sibling to stop hogging the remote? I know there will come a day when there are no little voices hurrying me to stop hiding, but right now? Right now is not that day.
I remember talking to a friend who had just had a baby before I was even pregnant with my first. She was lamenting that she hadn’t showered in two whole days. I was aghast! What kind of mother, what kind of woman doesn’t shower every single day?!
As you can imagine, that came back to bite me. In those rare moments when I have self-care time, I’m usually hitting the shower and praying I don’t run out of hot water. 20-minute showers with luxurious bath gels? Ha! These days I’m happy to use the kids’ 3-in-1 body wash/shampoo/conditioner and smell like watermelon. On really good self-care days I also tweeze my eyebrows.
Since chasing the kids around and climbing the stairs 9 bazillion times a day doesn’t actually count as exercise, I try to get in at least a few minutes of exercise a day. In most cases, that means doing squats while the bread is toasting or while picking up the LEGO that I step on with my bare feet.
Coincidentally, I also count the “Hop Around on One Foot While Muttering Adult Words” Dance that goes along with stepping on LEGO pieces as exercise too. My fitness routine is versatile like that.
You may not know this about me, but I love to draw and paint. I’ve started practicing some self-care related to pursuing my own interests in this regard and now have quite a collection of artwork pieces. My kids are starting to get annoyed that I keep ripping pages out of their coloring books, but hey, they want me to color with them, so they have to deal with the consequences. And Mama wants her pictures.
I know I jest, but self-care for moms is really just trying to fit in moments of sanity and fun in an otherwise high-stress job. Learning how to take care of yourself when you’re constantly caring for others is hard. Just remember, you’re not alone in your self-care woes and one day, probably far too soon, you’ll have all the time in the world for long showers and coloring in your own coloring book. Enjoy these moments while they last.
Do you really need to unwind at the end of the day? Check out these 10 Ways for Mom to Unwind at the End of the Day!