Being a mom is a full time job. You don’t get to go home after work and do it all again tomorrow – this job is ongoing!!!

Even if you work outside of the home, you’re thinking of your kids, making shopping lists in your head, and trying to remember when your munchkin’s next appointment for his booster shots is scheduled.  You wake in the morning and tend to the kids, you spend your days and evenings, and sometimes even nights with them, helping them, feeding them, loving them, taking care of them when they are sick.

It’s rewarding and important. It’s also tiring.

Yes, your husband might be helpful around the house and you are thankful for that. But in all honesty, moms generally are the main caregivers for the children.  And while you wouldn’t have it any other way, it can wear you down.  Besides being a mom, there are so many other aspects to your life – work, your home, your friends, your faith, maybe schooling, hobbies and activities, and your health.

However, when you start to feel like you’re losing touch with yourself – and I need you to always be aware of how you’re feeling in this area – then it’s time to do something about it.  I will tell you from personal experience that before I realized my “loss of self” was happening, I was lost, confused and irritable for no good reason.  ALL I ever felt was drained and guilty!

The solution?

The same way you find the time to be all things to everyone else, put yourself on the list and find time for YOU! That twinge of guilt you just felt reading that sentence, lose it. It’s not going to help anything.

Consider the suggestions below that worked for me:

Designate a “mommy night” each week – Not a Girl’s Night Out! This is dedicated and scheduled time that you spend with YOURSELF. I especially recommend this for my stay-at-home moms because you must have a break at times.  I spent 4 years home with my daughter and after a time, I got the impression that I was expected to handle her care 24/7, even when my husband was home. Not a chance! Just because one of us works outside the home and WE agreed that one of us would stay home, doesn’t mean that I have no rights, no say-so and am not allowed time to myself.

Try to keep it consistent each week but if you can’t, make it clear to your husband that this time is required and non-negotiable. He gets time to do the things he likes and the same rules apply to you. If you don’t take a stand, things will continue on and I will tell you personally, that you will seethe with resentment at times and won’t even understand why. That helps no one!

Don’t set hard and fast rules on what you’re allowed to do on your night. Sometimes, I just loved the peace and quiet to complete a to do list. Sometimes I went grocery shopping and spent time perusing the aisles. Starbucks (although it got a bit loud at times), playing in Target, pedicures, a long drive around the city or even just sitting quietly in my SUV in a safe place like a Sonic drive-in.

Everyone needs to be on the same page so have the discussion with your husband about how to work this out each week and have a backup day in mind in case life happens. Men are men and they figure, ” if she’s not saying anything about being stressed out, then I guess she’s fine”. And why do they think this way – they just do and yes, they would say something if it concerned them and make it change.  So speak up!! Martyrs die at the stake and you can’t do that – you are the center of your family and they need you!

When discussing this with him, approach the conversation “like a man”. Take the emotion out of the conversation, state the facts clearly and don’t in any way imply that he’s doing something wrong  (truth is – yes, sometimes they don’t help as much because they don’t want to, others it’s because they just don’t think they can handle the children as well as you do and sometimes we’ve given them the impression that we don’t want their help – so they don’t!). Just make sure he understands the benefits of why this needs to happen – to ensure a happier wife and mother.

Be sure to avoid sounding like you’re asking his permission because he’s not your boss, he’s your partner. Also, plan it on a night that usually works for everyone’s evening schedule. If you know he has budget meetings on Tuesdays, then Monday night isn’t a good time. Work with him because he really just wants to do what makes you happy and he can’t do that if you’re not being honest with him.

Make the change today and start down your new refreshing path to a less tired YOU!

To Your Beauty and Balance…

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