I’ve always been jealous of the Moms that have it totally together. You know the ones – they manage everything involved with being a parent and at the same time are able to focus on themselves.
They find time to work out, they have great clothes, their hair is done and they even take a little time to enhance their best features with make-up.
I must admit that in my first seven years as a parent, I have not been that Mom. Don’t get me wrong – from a parenting perspective I think we’ve faired pretty well. Sure there’s frustrations and tantrums (us and the kids) but for the most part, I think we’ve been able to manage work, parenting, activities, volunteering and the general day to day pretty well.
When it comes to me though, I will admit that I feel like I kind of let myself go. Sure there’s the extra pounds that haven’t come off since our third was born but it’s more than that. I let myself go as a priority. Everything has been for the kids, the house, work, my husband – all without really caring about myself. Nobody forced it on me – it’s just kind of what happened in my brain when I became a Mom.
Then a few weeks ago as I found myself listening to our youngest tell me a story about his day, I suddenly realized that he’s not a baby anymore. I don’t have any babies anymore. He just potty trained, he goes into the cupboards when he wants a snack, he’s scooting around on his balance bike with his feet totally off the ground and he tells full-on stories that are easy to understand.
It suddenly dawned on me that he’s going to be three in three months. Three. How does that happen? I started writing this blog for HRM Parent the month after he was born. My first inclination was to get sappy and reflective and then for some reason I started thinking about myself. I really need to get some new clothes. My shoes are terrible. Hmmm maybe I’ll wear make-up to work tomorrow. It’s time to get some real glasses and stop wearing cheap drug store magnifiers. Wow, he’s old enough now that I can get on the treadmill in the garage, leave the door open and let him run around if my husband isn’t home.
Then I took action. I started watching what I eat. I have been exercising a little more (not up to par but just doing it is better than not doing it). Last week I went shopping FOR MYSELF (say what?) and got some new shoes, pants and two shirts. I threw out my post pregnancy ‘comfort’ fit work pants. The stretchy waistband wasn’t doing me any favours so it’s pants with buttons from now on. And you know what, last weekend I did not feel guilty about throwing on a TV show so that I could enjoy a coffee and read a magazine in another room.
Maybe it’s because it’s getting easier now that he’s getting older. Maybe this is my mid-life crisis as I become acutely aware that my 40th is eight short months away. Whatever it is, it feels great. Moms of Halifax – take time to do things just for you. Love yourself like you love your kids. You deserve it!
Deanna is a Mom of three, wife, marketer and blogger – lover of travel, morning coffee, family time, belly laughs, good friends and uninterrupted showers! Follow her on twitter @DeannaCMiller