As a home educator I am around my children 24/7. I love my kids and know that home educating is 100% the right decision for our family at this time, however with a husband that works all over the country (and sometimes internationally too!) there are times that its just me and my 4 little dictators. As any parent knows, parenting is full on, especially when someone is tired or hungry or just approaching 2! I repeat, I love my kids but there are times that I just reach my limit.
I’m not ashamed to say that a few weeks ago I reached that limit. Adam had been away all week and I’d been on my own and hadn’t had a break, not even a 5 minute toilet break without children talking, whining or climbing on me. Adam got home late on the Friday night and then early Saturday morning went to B&Q to pick up some bits that we needed. I was left to get the kids up, dressed and breakfasted. Unfortunately Adam was delayed and by the time he walked through the door at 11am I was done. I’d separated one too many fights, dealt with one too many tantrums and been on my own and tried to breathe through the panic of yet another seizure from the baby. I. Was. Done.
Adam walked through the door and I grabbed my car keys, my handbag, jumped in my car and drove. I had no idea where I was going, or what I was going to do, but I just needed to not be mummy for a while. I didn’t actually tell Adam what I was doing, in hindsight I probably should have done, but after 10 years of marriage he knew instantly that something was up when he walked in the door and knew better than to stop me or ask any questions at that point!
I drove for around 45 minutes and ended up at a retail park. I decided that its been so long since I bought my self some clothes and so long since I went shopping child and husband free, that’s exactly what I was going to do! My first stop was H&M and it was pure bliss taking my time to walk around the entire shop looking at things, taking all the clothes in the changing room and spending time trying on clothes without the fear of a child ripping open the door before I was fully dressed! I went into Boots and sat down at a counter while a lady did my make up, went to Claire’s Accessories and picked out some new earrings and tried on all the pretty impractical shoes in New look. It was literally heaven.
It was in that moment that I realised how important self care is. I’m the first to tell other people “make sure you look after you too” when their child is in hospital or when they have young kids around all the time. However in practice I don’t really implement any self care in my own day to day life. It was in that moment that I pledged to look after me more, to do more of what I love, to start blogging again, to set up my own vlog, to do more baking, to wear earrings and jewellery that I stopped wearing the day I became a mum and finally to take time to shop for me, rather than just grabbing clothes while I’m doing the weekly food shop.
That day was a light bulb moment for me, I have 2 children with additional needs and a total of 4 children under the age of 8 around me 24/7. I need to start taking care of me, if I don’t then my mental health will suffer and then I wont be able to be the mum I need to be right now for my family. I’d love to know, what sort of things do you do for self care? Let me know in the comments.