Me first can sound selfish or it can sound obvious depending on where you’re at in your mental health, self-care journey. I always thought I did a pretty good job before I had kids. I had ample hobbies and interests, friends and social activities that my life felt full and rewarding.
Kids totally knocked that out. I did not have a routine. I did not have a stable, dependable habit or thing that kept me sane during tough times. I was just floating by.
Side note: the most important unsolicited advice I would offer an expecting parent is that you establish a meaningful, flexible routine that allows you to keep your sanity in check. Daily meditation? At-home yoga practice? Friend that you can call day or night? Get it before that baby arrives in your home.
Now that we’re two kids in I have learned that I really don’t have any self-care habits. I had things I did for fun, not really for calm and it’s really made it difficult to have any emotional resilience.
New Year’s Resolution #2: Me First
I’m going to do something for myself every day. Some days will be small. A cup of tea after the babies go to bed. A long cuddle with Clara. Saying no. Ignoring chores. Taking the kids for a walk even if it’s dark outside or sprinkling rain. Perfect conditions not necessary. I don’t know what this will look like (I’m learning after all) but these are my plans:
- Hot baths
- Baking bread
- Get outside, with or without kids
- Stating what I need, am feeling
- Declining invitations
- Ignoring chores
- Writing blogs, essays, gratitude journaling
- Watering the plants
- Eating food when I’m hungry, not waiting until the children leave me alone
- Take a pottery class
- Go to yoga