Where does time go? As a mom it feels like time either flies or crawls. Our last six weeks have flown by – the birth of a baby, a long week in Flagstaff, the loss of a friend, countless baseball games, school, homework and a trip to California have packed our days. There was little time for anything extra, this blog included.
Today was the perfect day to get back to it because it is my blog-o-versary! Six years ago this weekend, I took a leap and posted my first blog. Here’s how I summarized my intention in my original “about me” section:
Picture your heart. It’s your core. The center of your being, not only physically, but emotionally. Picture your emotions as ribbons or waves of energy. Like an object thrown into a still pond, the waves ripple from your heart and keep going. The size of the object determines the size and strength of the waves. The bigger the object, or emotion, the bigger the waves and the bigger the impact of the waves. Relating this back to your heart, we all know there is never just one emotion inside us creating waves. We always have multiple waves of multiple emotions swelling from our heart. And unlike the ripples that stay within the pond, our emotional waves extend beyond our physical body and crash into those around us whether we realize it or not. These are simple concepts that often take a lifetime to master. My hope with this blog is to start a dialogue on how to best introduce these concepts to children. If we can introduce these concepts to them early in life, we can help them to see the power they have within themselves.
In the almost three hundred blogs posted since, this original intention has remained a guiding light for the topics and ideas shared. I’ve written about many conversations with my kids, often using music or video games to get them talking. One of my favorites will always be The Drama Scale, which forever changed the way we talk about the actions of our friends.
While interacting with my kids was always a focal point, I also began to talk more about the challenges we have as parents. I’ve written a lot about time; managing, balancing and finding more of it. For a long time, I felt like if I could just find the perfect meal planning system or multi-use calendar, it would be the answer we were all looking for.
But the answers continued to allude me, and the topic of time led to the topic of mom guilt. Am I doing enough? Am I doing it right? We spend our days feeling guilty for what happened yesterday or what could happen tomorrow, next week, or when my child moves out on their own. Why is it that we are always so worried our child’s messiness at age five is foreshadowing for their future apartment? Mom guilt is ruthless, unrelenting and difficult to overcome.
Our reactive answer is to do more. We do more for our kids, spouse, parents, work, family, school, activities. We embody the mantra of “leave it all out on the field”, every day giving everything we have to everyone. We may be tired, but it’s worth it. We spend our days doing, striving for what’s next. We reach out to those who need us, filling their needs, doing for them what they cannot do for themselves. We are moms, that’s what we do, take care of everyone.
As we juggle time, guilt and doing, we forget to take care of ourselves. Self-care gets a bad rap for only being about mani/pedis and rose’ all day. No matter how many times I write self-care is not selfish, it’s still so hard when there is laundry to be done, lunches to be made and diapers to be changed. It is easier to put our own needs at the bottom of the list and think, someday I’ll get to it.
These are the topics that keep coming up. The topics that have no easy answers. The topics that I may spend a lifetime writing about. But the benefit of doing something for six years, is that it forces you to observe similar situations through different lenses. And as I was preparing to write this blog, the following question came to me:
What if we are working so hard to do for everyone in our lives, that we are disconnecting from our self?
We work so hard in our roles as moms, wives, daughters, coworkers and friends, that naturally, what we want falls to the bottom of the list. As a result, we neglect our most important relationship with the one person who will be with you every day of your life. Nurturing your relationship with your self is just as important, if not more, than all the rest.
But where do we start, when time, guilt and roles demand our constant attention? The answer is the same today as it was six years ago, it starts in your heart.
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Photo by Guillaume LORAIN on Unsplash
I started writing this blog because I wanted to have deeper conversations beyond "How are you?", "Busy", with other parents. Over the years I've shared personal stories, articles, authors and topics to facilitate conversations with parents about the joys and the challenges of parenting.