I finally left the house, after a month of being confined to the four walls of my home with a newborn and a toddler, to get some much needed “me time.” My husband had told me to go do something for myself, so I decided after major neglect of my physical appearance, I would go get my eyebrows done and buy some new booties. You know the little ones that everyone is wearing with the wedge heel? THOSE. I know they have been around for a while but it’s better late than never, am-I-right?
The past 10 months have morphed me into someone that I hardly recognize.
I am someone who usually loves to keep up with the hottest trends, wear make-up and have my hair styled, but through a rough pregnancy, and adjusting to a newborn, I’ve turned into the mom who doesn’t remember the last time she even showered. I feel like I have lost part of myself and I am yearning to feel her again. Correction, I need to feel her again.
Ten minutes into my mommy break, my husband started texting me frantically telling me that the baby had a fever. I should’ve left my phone in the car. I ran out of my eyebrow appointment with one eyebrow partially done, and I got in my car and cried. Will I ever get to be me again? What does me time even mean anymore? This is when I had the epiphany that my “me time” has turned into something that I hardly recognize and that I need to come to grips with what my new normal looks like.
B.C.(before children) my options for “me time” were endless. I could go sit at Starbuck’s alone, meet friends for brunch or hit up the mall for hours upon end. I had zero restrictions or restraints. If I was really lost in life, and trying to find myself, I would travel alone, and just submerge myself in exploring a new city. Come to think of it, there wasn’t much that I couldn’t do. The world was my oyster. I only had to look after myself, after all. It was all about me me me. I miss those days sometimes. I can still do some of these things, but it takes moving mountains, and it’s hardly ever worth the planning and executing involved to make these things happen. And even when I do get a rare few hours away, I still leave a big part of me with the children. I think about them constantly. The truth is, my time can never fully be mine again, so I will just have to take what I can get and savor the little moments that I get to myself.
Me time is now a trip to the gym, where I may or may not work out.
(Ok, a lot of times I drop my newborn off at childcare and sit on the big, comfortable couch and play on social media.)
Me time is now a car ride, alone, where I roll the windows down and blast my favorite 90’s rap music.
Me time is an hour at Barnes and Nobles, where I get to sit and read cook books, and immediatly decide that we are going vegan (we never do).
Me time is getting an impromptu pedicure, while drinking a real coke.
Me time is a long shower, that I drag out for 45 minutes, because I don’t know when I will get this opportunity again.
Me time is a Dr’s appt., where I get to drive in the car alone, for 15 minutes, both ways, and read magazines that I’m too cheap to subscribe to, while I wait for the Dr. to see me.
Me time is staying up an hour past everyone’s bed time to read a chapter in my favorite book.
Me time is going to my Bible study, that is a Godsend, because it’s with other real-life-breathing-adults, that I can converse with, AND it has free childcare for an entire hour during the study.
Me time is a trip to Sephora where I try on all the latest and greatest make-up, and usually leave without buying a thing.
Me time is sneaking out to Target or the grocery store, once my husband gets home from work, because there is an emergent grocery item that we “must have” at that moment, like diapers or formula.
(Ok, there really is not an item that we need, I hid all the formula and diapers so I could get out of the house. The real emergency is my sanity.)
All of these small things may seem like exactly that, small things, but they are moments where we can catch our breath and see a glimmer of ourselves before we had kids. It doesn’t sound like much but sometimes 30 minutes is all a mom needs to recharge and refuel. I usually come back to the kids feeling refreshed and alive, for at least an hour, before they push me to my breaking point again.