This morning I had a pretty extreme reminder for why Self Care should be priority numero uno for all moms. I’m a full-time working mom with a side job as a freelancer, which means that when I’m not momming it up, I’m 10,000% hustling to pay the bills and put food on the table. We live paycheck to paycheck around here, and today is September 1st, which means that as much as everyone likes to complain about Christmas appearing on Target shelves, I’m already making mental holiday lists because it will take me the full four months between this second and the night before Christmas to pull it off.
Last night I went to bed around 7 with my kids. I put them to bed and then inevitably I fell asleep too. But I woke up in horrific pain around midnight. My belly was gurgling and I felt like my bottom half was going to explode. I hardly made it to the bathroom before I experienced the absolute worst diarrhea that I have ever had. You know that awful shaking sweats you get right before your bowels threaten to rip out of your abdomen in sharp protest to whatever the hell it was that you ate? Yeah. That.
I was in the loo until the sun rose and at some point, in the middle of cursing out the universe, I realized that this is karma for not taking care of me. This BS is entirely my own fault.
I’ve so busy rushing around taking care of everyone else that I kept putting my own health and well being off until my body couldn’t take it for a second longer and threw my dumb self into purgatory. And you know what? I kind of deserve it. I live on coffee and snack foods and hardly any sleep. It’s not a shocking realization that I have been treating my body like crap lately.
I am home today being taken care of by my stay-at-home-husband. He is holding down the fort so that I can be alone in my misery. We had a chat this morning about how I run myself into the ground and that this is simply not ok to do anymore. We need me healthy and sane so that I can be the bread winner. Our children need me to be there for them no matter what and not holed up in a damn bathroom feeling miserable and sorry for myself.
So, moms…please, do yourself a favor before you end up sick and miserable like me, TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES!
Eat the kinds of foods that are good for your bodies, remember to breathe, get sleep – no, DEMAND sleep when you really need it and don’t be afraid to look past our inherent mental load in order to ask for help. I know. TRUST ME. This is hard, but if I had just said, “Hey, I’m really struggling here and I need some help” then my husband would have taken on some of my work load. Instead, I fell into the trap of mom guilt and let that guide my decision making, which for me meant ignoring my basic needs in order to care for everyone else until my health became an issue big enough to disrupt my daily life.
I’m literally blowing through rolls of TP today and feeling like I could wretch at any moment. Don’t do this to yourselves, ladies. Treat YOU with the same love and affection that you treat your babies and spouses with. If you can’t give yourself permission to do that then I am right now. TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES!
We moms have to stick together and we can’t do that if we’re dropping like flies because of illness and exhaustion or worse because we ignore our health.
Big love, Y’all.