Overcoming Guilt about Me Time

If you are a mom, you know the feeling of being overwhelmed, tired, and dirty. Yes, dirty.  If you have a little under the age of three, check your shoulder right now.  You have food on you.  #yourewelcome

But really, there are moments in my day when I am overwhelmed with the feeling of exhaustion and the promise of relief doesn't seem like a reality.  I just want to sit down, put my feet up, and take a few minutes to get all the wires in my brain straight.  After about a minute or two, I see the crumbs from the banana bread we had earlier in the week hiding in the corner and three toy cars tucked under our ottoman and then, oh yes, my sweet Lily comes toddling over with her favorite Little Blue Truck book to read.  I scoop her up in my arms and read the rhyming words that I know by heart for the thirteenth time today. This is my life and I love it.  I do.  But, to live this life I love in the fullest way possible, I have realized that I need time for me...to replenish my spirits and refill my tank.

A few weeks back I did just that.  Kevin was out of town for a few days, so I scheduled an appointment and penciled in a few extra hours for me.  Thankfully, I have an incredible babysitter that my two kids adore and is able to come over during the day.  I had four glorious hours all to myself.  Four hours.  Guys, this is like a vacation.  When deciding what I was going to do with my time, I promised myself I wouldn't run errands the whole time, like usual.  I would save at least an hour to do something I truly enjoyed that would refill my tank.

After my appointment, I was tempted to go straight to the store, but I didn't give in and, instead, went to my favorite restaurant and had lunch alone.  Who does that?  Not many people apparently, because I was the only person in the restaurant eating sans anyone, but I honestly didn't care one bit.  It was the quietest my mind and heart have been in a long, long while.  I could hear myself think.  I sat and read for awhile and then just took in my surroundings. It's amazing the things I notice when I'm not tending to a toddler and having a meal to myself.  Like the jazz music playing in the background, the girl who brought up fresh bread who had a bulldog tattoo on her arm with the name 'Caesar' underneath it, or the older gentleman wearing a fedora cap that came in with a Wall Street Journal, but checked Facebook instead.  Taking the time to take in my surroundings and experience and enjoy my meal was better than the yummy coffee I spoiled myself with for dessert.  It re-energized me and helped me to feel like a woman, not only a mom.

Mommas, when I was having this meal a bit of guilt tried to creep into my heart.  Sound familiar?  It seems to always sneak up on me when I'm doing something for myself.  I have a truly amazing husband and he watches our kids from time to time so I can do something with girlfriends or get a haircut or go to Cooking Club.  He is the best, but it seems like every time I am away, I have a surge of guilt wash over me that squashes some of the joy these getaways bring me.  I despise this feeling and it almost makes me wish I just stayed home.  Isn't that awful?  One time when I mentioned this to my husband, he looked at me like I had just refused a glass of wine at the end of one of those days.  He loves being able to serve me in this way and enjoys the chance to have some alone time with our littles.  He told me that feeling guilty was so incredibly silly of me.  Have I mentioned how much I love my man?  He made me realize that taking time for me is good and okay and necessary.

We all need our tanks refilled so we can fill those around us...especially when we have littles in our care.  

Now, could I have physically done this a year ago?  Probably not.  I had a seven month old I was nursing who wasn't a fan of being left with anyone but Kevin (and sometimes that was iffy).  There are those seasons when getting away for hours just isn't going to happen.  For all you Mommas in a season when you can't get out of the house without a child in tow, I challenge you to find 10 or 15 minutes to do something for you...read a book, paint your nails, take a hot shower, or go to the bathroom alone.  I promise it will not only benefit you, but will also benefit your sweet little family you care for everyday.

That hour at my favorite restaurant was a gift.  I felt more alive, more capable, and much much more excited for my two napping babes to wake up when I got home.  This is exactly what my heart needed and I'm so glad I didn't let the guilt win.

I would love to hear how you refill your tank!


  1. Thank you for this Vanessa! I truly needed this today!

    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for reading!

  2. Thank you for this Vanessa! I truly needed this today!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...