Sometimes things pile up on you. This week has turned into one of those. So, I sent out a call for guest posts. My lovely friend, Lauren, from My PostpartumVoice, was gracious enough to send me a wonderful gift; Let me share it with you.
The alarm clock screams out at you (read: your three year old is screaming at the top of their lungs because YOU’RE NOT AWAKE YET AND DEAR LORD GOD I NEED COOKIES RIGHT NOW SO GET OUTTA BED ALREADY, MOMMY!) as you cover your head hopelessly with a pillow in a futile attempt to ignore your human alarm. Snooze button kicks into motion as knees and elbows plow into every hard part of your body, feet too.
“Ok. Ok. I’m up.” Muttering, you stumble to the bathroom, then the kitchen to get cookies because hey, maybe it’ll keep them quiet. There’s nutrition in cookies, right? Right? Turn on the TV and pop on a movie. There. Parenting at its finest, right?
Wait. There’s something wrong with that picture, isn’t there?
What did you do for you? Anything? One could argue giving the kid cookies and putting on a movie was for the sake of your sanity. Perhaps, but do you have food? Drink? Are you watching a movie you like too or just one that the kid likes but is more like listening to Fran Drescher on helium for you?
Self-care does not have to be some huge long-drawn out and expensive process. It can be as simple as your favourite beverage. A movie YOU like to watch too. Sharing the classic flicks with your kids is precious and character building. Sure there are day to day tasks we must complete. Why not make those tasks as pleasant as possible by infusing them with a bit of self-care? Cleaning? Use one of your favourite scents while doing so. Laundry? Pay attention to how the fabric feels. Child care? Use your child’s innate sense of humour to fill up your laughter tanks. Laugh with them.
If, however, you don’t find yourself wanting to do any self-care at all, and instead you’re gloomy, dragging, and struggling to find the light in even the simplest things, it may be time to talk to a professional about your mental health. There’s no shame in reaching out for help. If you or a loved one are feeling suicidal, call 1-800-273-TALK or reach out to @unsuicide on Twitter. There’s always hope.