February 9, 2011

My sister's two boys (left) and my 2 boys and girl (top and right).

Yep, I am one of "those" moms who loves having my kids at home.  I love to love summer for this very reason.  Spending days with my kids under foot while I work and go about my business is just heaven for me.  They make me feel alive and they keep me on my toes.  I get more exercise now than I did in my teens and I have LOTS more energy (believe it or not - even with less sleep) mostly because of my children.  If I thought there was a fashionable vehicle out there big enough to drive 10 kids around in, I would probably consider having 10 kids (well, I guess that's not the only reason I'm shying away from 10 - haha)!  And our plan has always been to have 4 kids, but part of me wants more.  That's how much I love my kids.

This is not to say I am an overly patient person...I'm definitely not.  Nope.  Anyone who really knows me, knows this about me.  I'm not as organized as I would like to be either, although, adding a third child to the mix is kind of forcing me to have more order.

Since having my third baby (6 months ago) I've been feeling squeezed.  You know, when things are just not fitting right into the flow of life and you just know you have to make adjustments in order to make it work.  Well, I've felt this way for a few months now.  I am slowly getting a grip on what I need to change...and one of those things is to make time for me.  Inside, I kind of cringe when I say that because our culture doesn't value this the way it should.  Our culture has turned this into a completely selfish thing in alot of ways.  It's about "me time" versus "time for me".  Let me explain...
"Me time" could be classified as, doing whatever pleases yourself without concern for others - fulfilling the desire of the moment - hoping this will somehow rejuvenate self.  Problem is, time spent this way almost always leaves you with an unsatisfying taste for more.  Whereas, "time for me" could be described as an investment into yourself - care for yourself - building yourself up - so you have the strength to give out from that.  There really is a huge difference between the two.

This year I am (with the help of people who love me) working on taking better care of myself so I can be strong for my family and have lots and lots to give!  For far too long I have been giving out and not filling myself back up and then getting to a point where I feel I have nothing left to give.  Do you get that way too?  Do you feel that things run from order to chaos and you have to reset your defaults once again?

For me, this means being more active with the following, and even scheduling these things in so they're guaranteed to happen...

- praying (seeking God and putting my relationship with Him first before anything else)
- reading (books that build me up as a person and help me learn)
- writing (expressing my thoughts and seeing them in front of me)

- planning (actively paying attention to the direction our family is going and making plans to reach that)
- resting (taking care of my whole self - mind, body, spirit, emotions)
- exercising (again, taking care of this body I've been entrusted with)

Now, that being said, as much as I love my kids (as I mentioned), I have been reminded that I need to get away from them once in awhile.  This is something else I am integrating into my life.  Especially now that I have 3 demanding little ones, I need to take care of myself.  They are relying on me to be the best mother I can be.  :)

How about you?  Are you actively investing in your whole self when you get time away from your kids/family/friends?  Thoughts please...

♥ Estelle


Anonymous said...

It seems all I need as a pick me up is a little retail therapy :) Shocking I know! I can see the look on your face right now!! It does not matter how tired I am I can always find a little energy for shopping.
The best part is you dont even have to buy anything, for me it is the thrill of the hunt! I get focused on something (ie re-decorating a room) and I build creative ideas based on things I see.
A few hours out with my mom and I AM BACK! Sometimes even just getting out of the house kids or no kids does wonders. They say a change is as good as a rest!


Julie said...

There was a time when as a mommy I felt guilty for taking some time to re-group and recollect. I would feel as if I was unloading this demanding little person onto someone else, and was expecting them to resent me when I arrived back. I would even "pretend" to not like going away, and come back saying things like... "oh, it was allright having a few hours to go to the library all by my self, but I should have brought you".
I had lost my ability to be happy for the other person (granny, daddy, etc) to have a valuable chunk of time with our son. I was actually taking that away from them, by just "doing it all on my own". I really love that I can offer my family those special moments with our son now. Where they will return home saying " you'll never guess what we did today!" and hearing about a special story they shared together, looking at pictures, crafts, etc. I also appreciate our son more so when he "has a break" from me too. It's good for the both of us.

Estelle said...

Well, Jess, I heard that shopping and even just talking to another woman actually give you a boost of oxytocin (which is energizing to a woman). :) So yes, retail therapy does wonders!!

And Julie, that was well-said! I am realizing that my kids need to be with others sometimes just as much as I need to have some time alone. So true!!