Title: The Three E’s of Putting Yourself First!
Date: September 17, 2012
Have you ever heard the saying a mother can't take care of her children if she is not taking care of herself? Whoever invented that statement must not have a large family and be a single parent. They must not live in my household at all. It's a practice I have long neglected - finding room and time to take care of me. It was taught and instilled in me that children come first and you’re always last on the list. I wake up every morning at 5 am preparing five sleepy heads for school, hearing the same words every day, "Mom can I have another ten minutes?; I don't know where my socks and shoes are. I'm not feeling well, my stomach hurts” -and my favorite -“I don't know where my book bag or my homework is.” Yes, my life is a run on sentence right at the crack of dawn.
My days and weeks are filled with cleaning up mess, helping with homework, stopping arguments, rooms not being clean, and their friends believing that my house is the only parent's house they should come to hang out and chill. I have three types of children living in my household - teenagers, preteen and boys. Can anyone reading this bow their heads and pray for me? Well one day I took inventory of myself and realized eventually my children will become adults and a whole life will have passed me by. I will sit and say, "Well dang, what can I do now that my children are adults?
Well I wrote a list and on the top of it stated that I was going to enjoy having my house to myself and enjoy the quiet, without a child asking, “Mommy, why is your booty shaking like jello?" Yes sir or ma'am that's number one. Secondly, I am going to just go out at the spur of the moment anywhere or anyplace not worrying about a babysitter. Now I'm excited just on the fact I can be naked without a child popping up or out of me. I live for that moment when it's 4:30 in the afternoon and I'm just chilling naked. I know, I know too much information but true.
I look at some of my friends who are older than I am whose children have moved out from the nest. It's like they have no clue what to do and how to do just for themselves. They are still interfering with their children's lives, inviting people to live with them and they have lost a sense of what they dreamed of a long time ago - being free. It's one of my fears to be sitting home just existing versus living out my golden years.
I have been a parent since I was eighteen-years old - if you count assisting my mom and raising my brother and sister, it would be even longer than that. I came to the conclusion I didn't want to sit around trying to figure out what to do with myself once my children flew from the coup and left the nest. I was going to have a plan for my golden years and enjoy life as much as possible.
So I go back to my beginning statement – I need to take care of myself so I can live versus existing. The statement of taking care of yourself isn't just being there for your children but also for yourself. You are an important factor. As I think back to the times when I have thrown me to the back burner whether it was going to the doctor, exercising or taking a mental break so I can be the best for my children. My day can be overwhelming at times but I have to remember I am important too. I deserve to be healthy, look good and feel good.
Come to find out my children feel the same way. They want their mother to take care of herself. They want me to have fun and enjoy life to the fullest. So these wonderful sometimes drive-me-crazy children did this long speech and a written contract for me. I had to make a commitment to do the three E's. Eat better, Exercise and enjoy myself. They wrote out a contract and had me sign on the dotted line. My cat Kiki put her paw print as a witness.
Mommies as hard as it can be to take care of yourself in all the hustle and bustle of being a parent you have to make yourself a priority. You benefit in the long run of doing the very best for you so you can be around not only for your children but yourself. I await the day when I'm sitting in the late afternoon with my cool drink, jazz music and laying on my couch in my sexy shorts. Then one of my adult children will walk in the door and ask, “Mommy why is your butt shaking like Jello." I'll laugh and realize that you will never stop being a parent. Live, Enjoy and Smile.
© 2012 Tamyara Brown- Tamluvstowrite