Since the first day you found yourself with a child to take care of, you have been serving them and loving them very much even if they aren't yours. All that time spent created a bond. The time taken to feed them every few hours, the time to show them the world, bath time, bed time, reading time. All these things give us a connection and assures that child that you love them.
In certain places it seems only acceptable to serve a child, not your spouse. They are dethroned just like a kid when they all of a sudden have a younger sibling. They now need to do everything themselves, they don't need your time. The child does. So not true. They need to see love though service, though giving your time. Just don't forget it goes both ways, it is important for dad to serve his family.
And now for the reason I wanted to write today. How much do we serve ourselves? How much time do we spend?
The conclusion I came to was, if we aren't serving ourselves then do we love ourselves?
We put ourselves last, thinking we have to fulfill everyone else's need first. As a recent high school graduate I found myself watching my niece full time for a few months and guess what I had time to take care of myself. I would shower, do my make-up, make yummy meals, go on walks, visit friends. It was made easier that come 3 or 4 o-clock I would hand my niece over to my sister. But guess what, I would do all of those things with a baby, not when my sister got home.
Fast forward a couple years and I have my own child to take care of, I didn't take time to shower, or to brush my hair, or even to get dressed and this lasted almost a year. I understand taking time away from those things to sleep but I was out of excuses. I didn't like myself. That's what it came down to. I wasn't comfortable in my own skin, yet I did nothing to change it.
It was such a change for me. I felt better a week after having a kid than I did 6 months after. A week after having a baby I went to a cousin's baby shower, a week and a half after that I went to an outdoor movie. I had more energy then I had had in a long time. I went on lots of walks. I loved to visit my husband between classes. Mostly because I was directed by a doctor to shower daily and to take it easy. I lost the baby weight quickly and was feeling amazing.
And then came winter. My husband was in his last year of college. And I was depressed, I regained all of the pregnancy weight. Yikes!
In spring, I made some small steps that started me back on the right track. And all I did was to spend time on myself. It has taken me years to not feel guilty about taking care of myself. Why do we allow that to happen!? In the movie "Mom's night out" the dad mentions how you have to put your oxygen mask on first and than help others.
I invite you to take the time to love yourselves today. And than you can start on your ever growing to-do list.
Thanks for reading!