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Self Neglect

I didn’t know how tired I was until I laid down.

I left home Saturday morning headed for a quick getaway in Palm Springs. Adults only. I’ve never been fond of leaving my kids alone, but with an almost 19 year old, and an overly responsible 16 year old I felt a little less nervous. I knew that the bigs would look after the smalls.

Plane left at 7:30 AM and we touched down at 8:35. I called as soon as I landed to let them know I made it safely, and to “touch base” as my mom says. We drove from Ontario to Palm Springs, and enjoyed an amazing seafood lunch at Fisherman’s Market and Grill Service was great, prices were decent, and the food was amazing! We finished and headed to our hotel. My oldest son FaceTimed me and guess what he was doing? He was cooking breakfast for the house. He was making pancakes, eggs, and links. Before we ended the call, we said our I Love You’s then he said, “mom, have fun, don’t worry about us, we got it.” I smiled with pride and hung up the phone.

There’s a reason he said don’t worry about us. Since the tender age of 20, all I’ve known is motherhood. I stayed at home and chose to have, and raise my children, and I’ve done my fair share of coddling. My youngest was definitely a surprise, but the other 3, I was prepared. I was built for motherhood and I’m great at it. What I’m not great at is taking care of me and creating me time. I actually don’t know what to do when my kids aren’t around. I’ve blogged about creating time for yourself and how it’s essential to your mental health, but admittedly, I suck at it. Yes, I stay up after the house shuts down to peruse the net, write and sit in silence, enjoy a nice bath, but that lessens the amount of time I spend sleeping.

Yesterday after we arrived at the hotel we decided to lay down and nap. I often joke and say that I haven’t had a real nap in 18 years, the age of my oldest. A bit of an exaggeration, but there’s definitely some truth to that. As parents, we often neglect our own needs for our children. When I cook, I’m the last to eat. If I buy myself something, I feel obligated to buy them something. If I enjoy a nice meal, I feel guilt if they aren’t with me. It’s a process y’all! Yesterday I laid down at 2:30 with the intent of sleeping for about an hour or so, because any longer I feel like I’m missing something. When I woke up it was almost 9 PM. I woke up in a fog. I couldn’t believe I had slept for over 6 hours! I don’t sleep that long on an average night.

I had a bit of an aha moment after that nap. Learn to slow down. It’s okay to rest. I don’t have to do it all. It’s okay to admit I need help or say I’m tired. I don’t have to be everything for everybody. My kids need to learn how to be independent, and, they can survive without me calling them every few hours and vice versa. Taking time for me does not equal neglect for them.

Today I feel relaxed, rested, rejuvenated, and guilt free.

Until next time…❤️

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