Recently someone made a casual remark to me that caught me off guard. We were discussing my passion for planning Ladies Night Out Events and other amazing experiences for women and couples when she hit me with an attempt at “mom guilt” by asking, “Don’t you love your kids?”
Like a scratch on a vinyl record, I kept hearing that question over and over again, all throughout the night and into the next day. “Don’t you love your kids?” Why does wanting to live a full, amazing life make women feel guilty/bad if they’re a mom? Why should women stop being who they are the minute they become a mother? Why are other moms so quick to add to our already existing “mom guilt?”
The simple truth is this: If you care for your children, provide for them, and give them a loving, nurturing, happy environment then you have nothing to feel guilty about. And to top it off, you’ll be a better parent if you also carve time to do the same for yourself. You’ll come back refreshed, relaxed, and more happy than you were before you left. Taking time to connect with yourself, your close friends, and your partner can bring a joy to your role as a mom in ways you’ve never imagined. If you’re relaxed you’re not as quick to anger. If you’re feeling happy, your children can only be happy in response. If you’re energized you’ll be able to happily keep up with them.
Here are some ways you can give back to yourself so that you can be a better parent.
1. Go on vacation with just your husband. Leave the kids to enjoy some fun with their over-indulging grand parents while you get back in touch with the man you chose to spend your life with.
2. Attend a fun Ladies Night Out gathering or event. Enjoy fun and laughter with other women who are also moms and going through so many of the same experiences as yourself.
3. Plan a quick weekend getaway. A play, a show, a game, etc are all opportunities to help you get back to yourself, relax, and re-energize for your parenting week ahead.
4. Take a night off. If your children’s grandparents want to indulge your kids for a night, take them up on it! Draw yourself a bath, grab your just- waiting-to-be-read new book, or binge-watch one of your favorite shows.
Remember, it’s OK to just BE and be relaxed. It’s OK to meet your own needs too. After all, we can’t pour from an empty cup, can we?
I’d love to hear from you: do you make time for yourself in order to be a happier, more relaxed parent?
What activities do you do? What activities would you like to see more of? Write me a comment or reach out to me.