By Tracy Lyn Moland
"Mommmmmm, what are you thinking?" This is a question usually asked by our children, but maybe we should ask it of ourselves.
Throughout our lives, we have always made sure we have taken care of our needs and helped ourselves to progress through life. Growing up, we spent time with friends, participated in programs that we usually enjoyed and focused upon our future with school work. After completing school, we looked to the future of careers, life and finding the right partner. Our decisions were made with the future in mind - what would we do, where would we live, and who would we spend our time with? These decisions were made with "Me" in mind. We did not generally choose our partners, jobs or homes on what was best for them. We made our decisions based upon what was best for "Me" and this makes sense. We were not considered selfish because we all did the same.
And then we became parents, and society lead us to believe that we should feel guilt or selfishness for anything we did for ourselves. Our children are wonderful and amazing creatures but giving ourselves up to care for them does not help them. A parent that gives up their work, hobbies, and dreams to become a parent is not the best parent.
Realistically, the first months as a parent do mean full time attention to your baby but after that we need to look at the future. Usually our reaction to our children is based upon our moods. If we are overwhelmed, we tolerate less. If we are happy, we will show excitement over the same situation.
We also set examples for our children. What do we teach them when we encourage them to learn and grow yet show that we gave it all up when we became a parent? In order to be the best mother to my children, I also have to be the best Me. When I am motivated, energized and moving forward in my life the house runs the same way. If I am overwhelmed and frustrated my family reacts accordingly.
"Mommmmmm, what are you thinking? Shouldn't you be taking care of yourself so you are the best Mom around?"
Ways to take care of Mom/Parent
Have a hobby
Work from home
Don't work at all
Write in a journal
Attend a bible study
Spend time with a friend
Go on a date
Get a pet
Go on a trip
Find your passion
Find a dream
Have a career
Don't have a career
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