When you are just imagining how you’re going to be a mother, I’m sure that you’ve set an expectation of yourself. And in your desire to be the best mom for your little one, you sometimes have to adopt a new identity.
You might get limited in doing the things that you used to do before your little one came into your life. And sometimes, you might even do a complete 360-degree change in order to provide the best life to your child.
But motherhood is not only limited to fixing our daily schedule to accommodate sleepless nights. It is also about creating a version of yourself that can handle all the challenges of becoming a parent. However, do not make the mistake of losing yourself in the process.
Your Kids are Your World, But You Deserve to Be in That World Too
Once you enter parenthood, you begin to understand how our parents view us as their pride and joy. However, this view sometimes easily led us into making them the only world we orbit around. Understandably, they are on top of our priority list, and ourselves, does not even rank second. Instead, we didn’t even make it on that list.
Take a breath and think; now, do you recognize who you are? This same time and day last year, are you the same person? Change is inevitable, and we need to change in order to adapt. However, we are not changing for the better if we don’t like who we are becoming. You may not recognize it immediately, but right now, you might not even know how to answer the question, “Who are you, and what do you like?”
Our children are part of our daily lives, but your entire life also involves who you are as a person. You’re not only a mother, you are also your own being. This doesn’t mean that you are neglecting your kids, but you also have to find a balance and not lose a sense of who you are.
Motherly Love and Self-Love Should Co-Exist
I can imagine how easy it is for you to say the words, “I love my kids.” But when it comes to declaring how much you love yourself, you might take a while to do so. Before my husband and I decided to have a family, I used to know exactly what I want myself to become for each day.
This includes taking the time to choose my make-up, planning what clothes to wear, and the tasks that I’ll be doing for the day. I know what to expect and what I exactly want to become each day. Don’t get me wrong, I still make some effort to look good for myself, and self-care can still mean getting a new hair color. However, I know I don’t feel as good with myself as I used to be.
You don’t have to look twice your age for people to know that you’re taking care of your family. You can look and feel good while also raising well-disciplined children. You can still make some effort to appreciate yourself and look good while making sure your children are comfortable and safe throughout the day.
If you feel like you can’t multitask workload and babysitting, I want you to know that it’s okay to get help. I have to admit that there’s some pride in me to not want my mother to help with my kids. But know that you’re also giving friends and family members a chance to bond with your children.
We all have a different definition of self-love, so don’t be afraid to take a day-off from mommy duties. Whether it’s volunteering or getting your nails done, that’ll make you happier, do it. Self-love is backed by science, so if you have the time to keep yourself physically healthy, there’s no reason to skip some “me time.”
You Didn’t Lose Yourself, It’s Just Hidden
I think it’s safe to assume that every mom will say that motherhood is one of the best and most fulfilling experiences there is. Especially if you genuinely love your children, all the sleepless nights and sore muscles suddenly doesn’t exist anymore.
However, it’s also typical for moms to feel isolated and alone. Because of the responsibilities at hand, they have to change or skip some hobbies that they love doing. At the same time, you might even lose part of your social life to balance your time.
You will change your personality and habits in order to accommodate this new person in your life. But I also want to remind you that you can still feel satisfied with your daily life. You might get bored of how mundane your daily schedule feels, and you begin comparing your nows from yesterdays.
But let me tell you this, you haven’t lost yourself yet. And perhaps what you know now is going to help you achieve the best version of yourself. For example, I do enjoy the outdoors, and this source pointed out that there are even lightweight strollers that would be excellent for walking. So once my baby reaches the age to safely accompany me, I make it a point once a week to walk around our neighborhood. This gets me out of the feeling of being “stuck”, and I get to meet other moms as well.
Caring Mothers Care About Themselves Too
If your schedule is really tight, I advise that you start small. You don’t have to immediately dedicate a whole week if it feels uncomfortable. You can simply start by using even just an hour just for yourself. Even if this is just you listening to music while sipping tea by the kitchen island.
Tired mothers are not going to be able to take care of their babies, as well. You’ll eventually feel zombie-like or even cranky. On the contrary, if you are well-rested and you like what you see and feel, you’re going to be able to love and support your kids much easier. So go on, get that afternoon nap while your kids are at school. You deserve it, mama!