Today is MomDay! I really hope to be back to our regular programming. February was a busy month, not only for my daytime job but for my personal life as well. Thank you, God, for carrying me through. I could finally breathe a little more this March with kids’ school wrapping up and my work’s one-year cycle is about to close. I truly apologize for a ghosted February.
You know what, I realized that it’s difficult to keep up with regular posts three times a week, especially that I am a homemaker with three little children and a career woman at the same time. But, since I terribly missed writing because of my one-month hiatus, I’m willing to give it another shot this March.
I found this quote in my newsfeed and I could not agree more.
Parents should not neglect themselves in the process of parenting. Self-care is essential, mommies and daddies. It’s not being selfish or pagfi-feeling dalaga or binata. After six years of reading books and articles about motherhood, it’s amazing that my feelings, whether of joy, fear or worry are almost always validated. I picked a few common issues among mothers which I can totally relate to:
- Drinking cold coffee.
- Frozen shoulders and back pains, especially for breastfeeding or co-sleeping moms.
- Cracked lips (forgets to drink water). Dry hands (kaka-alcohol).
- “Boring” appearance (loose shirt, oversize PJs, oversize undies, tie buns, oily face).
- Lack of me-time/quiet moment at home.
Self-care for me need not be a grand out-of-town vacation. But, I do try to visit a place I’ve never been to at least once a year. I take simple steps to care for myself and to make me feel and look good despite the exhaustion and busyness.
The simple solution for your cold coffee is to buy a good coffee flask! I wonder why I haven’t thought of that earlier in my motherhood and therefore wasting an awful lot of coffees turned cold. Haha. A good thermal or insulated coffee mug or tumbler need not be as expensive as the branded ones. Just choose a quality one at your local stores. I got my first coffee flask as a favor from my sister and it’s good. I say this because, after four to six hours, my coffee or tea is still hot! (Yup, sometimes I only get to finish my coffee after the fourth hour or by lunchtime. This happens when upon arriving at the office, some people are already waiting to talk to me. Being at home is no different and sometimes even worse. I cannot finish my coffee until after all my children have eaten their breakfast and taken their baths. Whoo! Mom Life!)
Eyebags are next! Aside from eye creams which I have yet to search for, my temporary solution for this is to use sunglasses whenever I’m out. I see my shades now not as a fashion accessory but a necessity when outdoor not only to make me feel and look good especially during photo takings but also for protection. I don’t have yet a medical explanation, but I seem to be suffering from photosensitivity for the longest time. I could not walk outside on a sunny day without hurting my eyes which sometimes leads to migraine. I confirmed this when I realized that people who borrow my phone finds it too dim – set at five to ten percent brightness.
For inevitable body aches, it would be nice if you have money and time for some massage and spa sessions. But, if like me, no time and no money for spa, request your children to do it for you! My six and four-year-olds tap my back and bum like pros! Well, not exactly pros but not bad, not bad at all. They can offer relief to my sore muscles and tangled nerves. On lucky nights, they do it with aroma and healing oils pa! You can also invest in TENS machine (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation). Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a method of pain relief involving the use of a mild electrical current. However, please do consult your physician and/or physiotherapist. I did when I suffered from MPS (myofascial pain syndrome). By the way, I also suspect that I have this fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS).
Cracked lips, dry hands and anything about my physical appearance, I rely on my minimal, low-key but trusted beauty arsenal. A good cover on my face that needs no drastic retouch for twelve hours, a tinted lip balm and hand moisturizer, then I am good to go, run errands or run with the kids!
Now, let’s address our “boring”, unflattering and either undersized or oversized clothing, mamas. Nothing easier to solve this issue once and for all but to Konmari your wardrobe. Let go of everything that looks unflattering to you, everything not your size and everything that does not spark joy. No matter how beautiful or expensive the clothes are but if they do not make you feel good or happy about yourself, LET THEM GO. That’s it. Over time, you can build a wardrobe that not only suits your lifestyle but also gives you joy and comfort that no day shall pass that you’d think you’re wearing a “boring” outfit.
Lastly, let me tell you a secret. You know how much I would love to travel, right? To relax, rejuvenate, recharge and simply live in another dimension. But, with three small children and the youngest still on breastfeeding, being away for two days is not yet possible. This does not stop me from doing a sort of a staycation, nonetheless. I book a room of my favorite hotel in the city, go there straight from my office in time for the 2PM standard check-in. (Sometimes, I request for early check-in.) Then, I enjoy some me-time from two in the afternoon until eight or nine in the evening so I can be with my kids at bedtime. I go back to the hotel in the morning to enjoy my breakfast and laze around until check-out. It works for me since I am also not comfortable sleeping alone in hotel rooms.
By whatever means, just remember that self-care is as important as taking care of our family. It is never being selfish. With a good moral compass, proper planning, and superb time-management, I’m sure you can figure out a way to care for yourself in the midst of all pressing concerns and responsibilities. Good luck!