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Being a stay at home mom doesn’t leave room for much downtime. As moms, we are constantly told to take care of ourselves and to not burn out. Self care is the new buzzword making its way around mom circles.
But how on earth do you make that happen? How do you get everything done and still have time for yourself??
I’m going to let you in on a little secret…
You don’t… You just don’t.
You can do an online search and find blog post after blog post telling you that you can basically have your cake and eat it too. That you can get everything done on your to-do list, take care of the family and yourself with this handy dandy printable or schedule or whatever else it is.
Can I just tell you that’s wrong?
While they are helpful in getting everything done, they aren’t the end all to your problems.
I’m going to be real with you for a second.
Yes, you can have many days where everything falls into place and everything gets done. You’re well rested, the kids are cooperative, and life just falls into place.
But, more often than not, a wrench is going to get thrown into you lovely to-do list.
Someone starts throwing up… Another gets into the pantry and dumps a whole bag of pretzels on the floor… Someone else refuses to nap and clings to you all. day. long.
To achieve balance in our lives as moms, we have to be realistic
I would love to get everything on my to-do list done every single day and still have time to sit on the couch in the evenings and binge watch Netflix and eat popcorn. It’s just not going to happen most days, though.
While I love to be organized and use my bullet journal to help keep my life in order, things are sometimes just a mess and not everything gets done. And sometimes that makes me feel like a failure.
I blame social media
Yep, I said it.
Someone has to.
I’m picking on Instagram right now. Everyone loves Instagram and creating oh so perfect pictures for all their friends and followers to see. I’ve taken a break from Instagram for this reason: a lot of it is so unrealistic.
Yes, some people are very real on their accounts and you see all the nitty-gritty. I’m not talking about those.
I’m talking about the ones with the moms who post their morning shakes, their kids dressed to the 9’s, her hair and make-up always impeccable, and so on and so forth. I’m here to tell you that even though they always seem to be perfect on Instagram, they aren’t in real life. No one is.
Whether you outwardly realize it or not, the constant bombardment of "perfection” takes a toll on how you feel about yourself.
I mean, c’mon. It is currently 2:30pm on a rainy weekday, my kids are having nap/quiet time in their room after a long morning of homeschooling and I’m sitting at the computer in leggings and a t-shirt, no make-up, rocking a top-knot while I pump out a blog post. Yep, I’m Instagram ready, aren’t I?
But this is life for me. Yes, I’m going to get dressed shortly because naptime is almost over and we have errands to run. Guess what, though? I’m going to change from my leggings to jeans, throw on my chucks and leave my top-knot with no makeup.
Balance means letting go sometimes
Finding balance as a mom sometimes means not getting everything on your to-do list done and being ok with that.
It means leaving the dishes in the sink until morning and sitting on the couch with your husband after a long day.
It means playing hide-and-seek with your kids instead of folding a load of laundry.
It means some days doing the bare minimum cleaning of your house to spend more quality time with your kids.
Moms, we have to let go sometimes to achieve balance in our lives as SAHM’s and working moms. Yes, it’s so nice for the house to always be clean and organized, but at what cost?
While my kids are old enough to help me with some chores, they can’t help with everything. One day my house will always be clean, but it will also be empty of children.
Some days, balance for me is letting go of my own expectations and living in the moment. Snuggling up on the couch with my boys and reading “just one more” book while 3 loads of laundry sit piled up on the couch waiting to be folded.
Other days, it’s waiting until nap/quiet time to flash clean the house before they get up again.
So, mama, find your balance. Find what makes you and your family happy. But don’t compare your real life to what you see on social media. Find the balance that works for you instead.