What does self-care look like to you?
In a world where women are the very lynch pins of the home & the family. Where women often work full time & co-ordinate child care & children’s activities, care around older parents & manage a lions share of the household cleaning and food, what does self-care look like?
When my two youngest children were born, I was in my late 30’s. My husband left the house at 7 & returned 12 hours later. Every second weekend, we had our oldest children with us, my stepsons. My family were in a different country & I felt absolutely overwhelmed with sleep deprivation, the relentlessness & the love I felt for my babies & also the drive to clean & cook.
What would I tell that younger me now?
“Make space for self-care, it doesn’t have to be a huge chunk of time, but something for you”.
Fast forward 10 years & my older boys are men, my 10-year-old is nearly taller than me & my 8-year-old daughter is sassy & kind. They can all cook a meal (give or take) & we talk about energy & time to do a project or complete something. We all make space for self-care.
Don’t get me wrong, in the years between babies & now, we have delt with grief, with long haul travel because of ill parents, of house moves & career changes. Self-care has had to shift in time taken & even what it looks like. But it is necessary.
What keeps me ‘medicating’ with self-care is, if I fall to bits, then my family struggle. I understand I am one of the lynch pins in our small team. I take time to read a book, to sew, to infuse oils & make balms, to simply put flowers in a vase & walk my dog. Why? Because it makes me happy. I am not last on my list of people; I am equal & deserving.
Paula is an avid writer and enjoys working with food and words.