My son is nearly 18 months old and finding some me time has been a struggle for, oh, 18 months. Between working full time, being a mom, caring for the house, and being a wife, I often forget about me and doing things I enjoy.
Sometimes I even forget that I enjoy things.
Sometimes I feel like I’m on auto-pilot. Just going through the motions from sun up to sun down.
This past week I hurt my ankle in what turned out to be tendinitis in my Achilles. Bummed I hurt my ankle, but it meant to take a break and cool out.
Being able to hang out on Sunday and just watch football was great. My marriage didn’t suffer because I laid down with ice on my ankle and watched some TV. My son didn’t know any different as he “read” books to himself or took a two and a half hour nap.
The chores may have suffered, but that’s okay.
Finding the balance between motherhood, marriage, and myself has to be the biggest struggle I’m still dealing with. Finding some me time every day, hell, every week is hard.
What’s Not Considered Me Time
I am 10000% guilty of calling the following “me time.”
- Folding Laundry
- Actually, ANY chore
- Taking a shower
- Peeing with the door closed
I know you’re guilty of these, too.
I sometimes feel forced to call these things “Me Time” as it’s the only time I get alone during the day. Between work and home, a shower might be the only time I get to myself. Having a kid that barely sleeps, I go to bed really early just so I can get some rest before his first, second, millionth wake-up.
I’m also guilty of calling chores, specifically folding laundry, “me time.” I mean, I’m multi-tasking, right? Getting chores done and being alone with my thoughts. That’s, what, ten minutes of me time! Every day!
During the week
At work, I am taking my lunch break nearly every single day. I either take this time to walk (before tendinitis ruined that) or blog.
I blog for me. And for you, but really I blog for me. I enjoy blogging and connecting with my readers and other bloggers I’ve found.
No, really, that’s it.
From the moment I get up, I am mom while trying to get ready for work. Maybe you can call my time on the Metro “me time,” but it’s not. I’m thinking about what needs to be done at work. When I’m on my way home, I am thinking about how to fit everything in at home.
When I get home, I am immediately thrown into being a mom, cleaning, and getting ready for bed. Thankfully, my husband does 99.9% of the cooking so I am able to enjoy that time with Ri before the mad dash to eat dinner and get ready for bed.
Finding some me time is a struggle every single day.
On the weekend, I sit back and enjoy my coffee while Ri plays with his toys if John is still sleeping. I wish every morning could be like this because it’s a fantastic way to start the day. My son may request I play with him, and I will, but I start off sitting down and letting him play with his toys without me.
What I Need To Start Doing
I really need to start finding some me time during the week and a little on the weekends. Before Ri was born, I would knit or do some kind of craft often. I’d bake a bit more. I would get to the salon more often. I’d read a book!
I want to get back into reading. In the spring, I started the Game of Thrones series during my commute but stopped for some reason. I was really into it, but I guess life sort of took over and I stopped reading.
I really need to get back into crafts. Ri is still a bit young for crafts with me, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t get to do any. I have a big project of making pillows for the couches that I still haven’t done. I bought the fabric and materials over the summer so they would match our new couch covers. Have I put the pillows together? No.
It’s just taking up a lot of space in our living room when I really need to just set time for myself and do it. This isn’t a chore to me because I enjoy sewing and creating things for the home.
I need to just tell John that I am taking “me time.” Not ask. Not hint that I need some. Just straight tell him I am doing something for myself. He bought me a wonderful gift for a massage at one of the most expensive places in DC for my birthday last November. The gift card is sitting in my dresser.
If that doesn’t say how much time I don’t take for myself, I don’t know what does.
Free play won’t hurt Rion or his development. In fact, it’s good for him and what he needs! I don’t need to rely on the TV to get some time to myself. He has plenty of toys and books that entertain him for a solid amount of time. It’s not all day, maybe 30-60 minutes, and everyone is happier because of it.
Once my ankle heals, I need to start going to the gym. Whether this is when Ri goes to bed or I wake up a little earlier while John is getting ready, I need to fit some gym time in for myself. I have stalled, and taking a few hours each week to focus on exercise and fitness will be good for me and the family. Taking my lunch walk is nice, but it’s not enough at this point.
I applied for another NASA Social. I had a blast at the first one I went to, and decided I should possibly make a thing of it. It’s something that just I can do. You can read about my first #NASASocial experience here.
The hardest part to making this succeed for me is sleep. We’re knee deep in a bad sleep pattern and I can’t seem to find our way out. We have a good night, and suddenly a string of hourly wake-ups. Once I figure this out, which could very well be never, then maybe I will feel better finding some me time.
How You Can Add Me Time To Your Routine Today
The biggest question is fitting all the things in a day a mom is supposed to do in one 24 hour period.
Here are a few starting points to adding in some “me time”:
- Get rid of your guilt if something doesn’t get done if you choose to do something for you instead
- Schedule errands, chores, and down time
- Let your child have free play time
Small list, but effective for finding some me time.
Getting rid of your “mom guilt” is step one for getting in some much needed me time. You don’t have to go to sleep with a messy house, but if you put off cleaning the toy room until the next morning so you can relax in a bath with your favorite magazine you will be a much better parent, spouse, and employee because of it. You deserve time too!
If figuring it all out is getting too tough, make a schedule of when errands, chores, and down time should occur. Scheduling can be such a time saver! You can add delegates to your list to make sure the house is running smoothly and you can have time to catch up lounge on the couch with the TV show you haven’t caught up on in months.
I always look forward to my Saturday morning coffee. It’s a great way to start the day – just me, my cup, and the sound of whatever Rion is playing with.
Finding Your Balance
Every day is a new day, and every day is a day to start over and make changes.
As a working mom, balancing me, my son, my husband, and the home is a daily struggle that I strive to perfect each and every day. It’s important to take care of me and I often let “me” slip to last place in the race for my attention. I want to show Rion that I take a great interest in my own hobbies and my health so he can do that as well.
I need to be the best mom I can be for me and my family.
Are you struggling with finding some me time? How are you making time for yourself in your busy day-to-day life?