We run on empty so often.
You run on empty. I run on empty. It's the nature of our society to push everything until the last drop - and then we are beyond worn out. We wait to get gas till the light warns us that the tank is empty, we save the last drops of milk, we scrape the peanut butter from the sides of the jar - and we do the same with our self. We push, and give, and push, and give, and we often ignore the warning lights telling us to refuel.
It's hard to remember that you matter when you're exhausted.
Moms, there is no guilt in needing a break.
I believe, in order to give, you must make sure that you are replenished. If your tank is dangerously low all the time then you will lose sight of the beautiful role that motherhood has in your life and the lives of your children. It can slip into drudgery. And in the drudgery will come discontent, sadness, fatigue, and disillusionment. I know. I've felt it.
So I've learned to take breaks.
Yoga here. Coffee time. And then, last summer, by an absolute gift, a week in South Carolina with some sweet girlfriends. We had grand plans - go dolphin watching, visit shops, tour - and yet, we spent hour after hour after hour sitting at the edge of the Atlantic with the surf washing over us. We just sat. And talked. And sat. And decompressed.
Moms need moments of still.
Now, I know it's hard. I cried when I left home for those eight days last year. But, I came home better, stronger, and more intentional.
This post isn't about hopping on a plane and leaving. It's really not. It's about recognizing the need for rest and recharging that is so easy to overlook. You see, for years I didn't give myself permission to leave -- I'd come up with excuse after excuse after excuse to not take care of myself in the name of motherhood. And I became worn out. So today, I'm talking about being willing to recognize that some days it is okay to let the kids watch a movie and you grab your favorite book and a cup of chai and you just read. Maybe you schedule a date with your friends to grab coffee. Maybe you go in the backyard and work on your gardens. Recharge.
You must take care of yourself.
If you don't you can burn out. I did. I just didn't realize it because I was so stubborn in thinking that the right way to be a mother was to never stop giving and I forgot to take care of me. So today, I'm giving you permission to give yourself a break. It doesn't make you less of a mother. Not at all. In fact, I believe that by cultivating space within your schedule to take care of you that you will be a better, more intentional, mother.
I write. I play piano. I speak. I read. I garden. And that is all good. It's part of who I am - a creative individual. I want my children to see me take care of myself, to cultivate interests, and to enjoy the gift of motherhood.
Recharge, sweet mother, recharge.
This is my encouragement to you.
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