Misadventures of a 20-Something Mom: Mom University: Making the Most of "Me" Time   

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Mom University: Making the Most of "Me" Time

I have a great life. I really do. I have an amazing, hardworking husband who is constantly striving to make more of our dreams come true. I have a beautiful, healthy baby boy who is the light of our lives. I even have the luxury of staying home with the baby right now, so I have yet to miss any important "firsts."

But sometimes, all that isn't enough.

Sometimes the days blend together... and next thing I know a week has passed without me feeling any sense of accomplishment. I realize I have spent all day in my pj's or had a spitty cheerio in my hair when I talked to the neighbor. Sure I managed to teach the baby to point and laugh at boobies or to dance when I say "drop it like it's hot"...but what have I done for me.

 As fantastic as my life really is, I spend a lot of time wishing certain things were different.
  • I wish I was skinnier
  • I wish my house was cleaner/more organized
  • I wish I ate healthier
  • I wish I was an amazing meal planner/cook
  • I wish I spent more time with my friends
  • I wish I was a "real" writer
  • I wish I was a better wife, partner, best friend, etc.
I do all this wishing...and not a lot of doing.

When I worked as a therapist, I lectured many a mom about the importance of "Me" time. I told them that they couldn't take great care of their families if they weren't taking great care of themselves. I spouted off examples like the oxygen masks on airplanes more times than I can count. I created worksheets and activities for these moms to chart how they actually spent their time and how they wished they spent their time.

In short, I was an idiot. Completely clueless. Out of touch with the realities of being a mom. Who wants to fill out a worksheet during their almost non-existent "me-time." I had the right idea, but the logistics were all off.

The reality is: being a mom is tough work.

There are no days off. There is no vacation time. You cannot call in sick or take a sabbatical. The job is 24/7. The boss(es) is such a hard ass that he won't even let you take a pee break without interrupting and imposing demands.

The high-maintenance nature of the job means that most Moms just aren't designed to think about themselves. We are all consumed with our spouses and children. Half the time, if we do manage to sneak away, they are all we can think or talk about.

This my friends, is an absolute recipe for burnout. "Me-time" is a necessity. (No worksheets required.) I staunchly believe that it helps us become and remain the best mom/best spouse we can be.

I mentioned some aspects of my life that are currently shall we say...underwhelming.

Over the years, I have learned that no one is responsible for my happiness but me.

I could continue to make excuses for why things are the way that they are (I'm too tired, I don't have enough time, I don't have enough money) or I can work to change them.

Therefore, September 1st marks the beginning of my 30 day enrollment in Mom University. Instead of wasting all of my "me" time on facebook, television, or mindlessly staring at walls, I am going to try and do something REAL each day. Whether it be small or large, I am going to actively pursue activities/courses that get me a little closer to any of these goals.

It's open enrollment time here at Mom U, and I invite you to join me.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with you. Any time gets wasted on pointless activities. For me the reason for this is because I might get literally one or two minutes here and there and find I don't have time for anything other than sitting (in a half asleep daze) and checking email. I would love to hear if you have ideas for how to turn this into productive time!