In a world of instant gratification, it is easy to forget that caring for yourself is not an instant thing. We need to invest in ourselves, as much as we invest in others. Sometimes, the mere role of being a mom, makes that feel pretty close to impossible.
I spent the first 5 years of motherhood thinking I had to fit in this box. I had a list a mile long of things I needed to do for my girls or my husband to be "a good mom." Regardless of all the things I could check off that list, I still didn't feel edified. As my postpartum depression started to sink in, that list felt even harder to attain. I needed to do more and more things to make up for what I was lacking in my list. The more things I did, the more stressed I got.
Somewhere in the past few years I learned the term self-care. I learned that by putting myself first on this list, the easier everything else came. Eventually, I figured out that I didn't have to feel guilty to spend a few hours with a friend. I can lock the door to the bathroom to wash my face. Deciding to go on a date with my husband instead of spending the night with the girls is ok. I am a person first, then a mom. If I am not stressed, I am a better mom. If I feel whole, I am a better mom. If I feel like Alicia, I am a better mom.
Self-care comes in lots of different shapes. Only you can know what YOU need. Sometimes, it is simply saying no. It is knowing your limits. It is a bubble bath at 1 AM because the house is finally quiet.
I ask you to think of what was the last thing you did for you. I hope that you don't have to think too far back!
The Mothers' Nest recognizes the importance in self-care, especially while going through postpartum depression or related illnesses. We are putting together small self care kits November 4th that you can take home with you. It is a free event for anyone who has experienced a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder. One kit will go home with you, and another will be sent to the caregivers of Seven Hills Hospital in Henderson, Nevada. The therapists and workers there were involved in the aftermath of the Las Vegas Shooting. We want to show them that it is ok to take care of themselves as well as others. This facility has a postpartum depression center, and so by helping these caregivers, we are helping the mothers who are in the Las Vegas area. If there are left over kits after the therapist and other caregivers receive one, they will be given to the mothers in that facility. As you can imagine, an event like that can be very triggering.
For more information and to RSVP see our event of Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/events/141271163177520/