I was at the gym working out today when a neighbor (and mother of 2) came up to me and asked, “How do you stay so calm all the time with all those kids?” After I stopped laughing long enough to answer, I said simply, “Why do you think I’m here??” (Uhh… besides the free childcare… it’s honestly a lot easier to be calm when my kids aren’t in my direct line of vision/hearing.)
After telling this neighbor that I am definitely not calm all the time I told her about my husband asking me kindly last night, “You haven’t been to the gym this week, have you?” Now, before you get offended and think it has anything to do with my physical appearance, allow me to get offended and explain that it has to do with my emotional wellbeing. It was his way of saying, “You’re being a real *bleep*- you need to go workout.”
It’s true. Working out has a lot to do with how I feel and act and react. I’m sure a more knowledgeable person could explain the specifics of what gets released in your body to make this happen, but I just know that for me it works. And while I could get all guilty feeling for being selfish and taking the time for myself and letting someone in the gym’s childwatch take care of my children, etc. (trust me, I learned well from my mom… I can feel REALLY guilty about not being a good mom, and its one of many excuses that’s kept me out of the gym some days) I’m choosing to put on my oxygen mask first. You know the drill before every single plane ride when the flight attendant tells you that if the oxygen mask falls from the ceiling, FIRST put on YOUR mask, then assist others in need… or something like that. It’s because if you can’t breathe and pass out, you can’t very well help anyone around you, right?
Isn’t that the opposite of what we do as moms? We worry about those around us. We put them first all the time and take care of them before (if ever) we take of ourselves. Sometimes to the point of passing out… or at the least, being a less than healthy person.
Well, maybe this Mother’s Day we can all take a step together. (Or if you happen to be the Dad reading this, help your wife do this…) First put on your oxygen mask. Do something that helps you relax/ heal/ rejuvenate/ enjoy the day and your family more. Don’t let the guilt creep in, just enjoy. I’m guessing that like my family, in turn they will enjoy you more too!