Becoming a mother changed my life. I gave birth to my first daughter at 22 years old. She was a momma's girl from the beginning-never taking a bottle and always co-sleeping. I enjoyed it, but this change was definitely an adjustment since I had never experienced anything like motherhood. I know, motherhood is its own unique experience.
There were some moments in those early years when I felt like I didn't know whether I was coming or going. I was battling my own internal desires while try to learn new skills as a mom and wife. Now that I have been a mom for over a decade, I can confidently say that I am learning to embrace and love myself while embracing and loving my family. I don't have to battle for the things that I need to refuel while caring for my daughters, husband, and home.
If you like this post, check out Carving Out Time for Mommy.
My Top Six Self-Care Solutions as a Homeschooling Mom
Engaging my mind and spirit
Spending time in God's word is at the top of my self-care list because it helps me with perspective. I don't take all that life throws me too seriously because I know that it is only part of the story and not the whole thing. Holding on to truth allows me to let go of anything that it is contrary to it. On days when I want to include other resources in my Bible Study, I use Illustrated Faith's monthly kits like the I Am kit. Not only do I spend time reading the Word, but I read regular fiction books too. I enjoy contemporary, realistic stories. By taking time to escape into a good book, I am allowing my mind to rest although reading does require some thinking. :) If you don't have a library card, you should definitely get one. A good book can definitely help you find calm even if it's a cookbook or how to book.
Using my hands
I can't be idle, and you might think there's no way to be idle if you have a family to care for, but if I get stuck in a routine this makes me feel idle because I am just moving through the day without much thought. I have hobbies that allow me to do things that I wouldn't normally do. Recently, I started sitting in on some of the painting classes at Michaels. For two or so hours each month, I go out alone and do something I enjoy without interruption. Other hobbies, I have include making jewelry for my business and coloring in one of my many coloring books. Using my creative gifts often helps me to feel rejuvenated.
Resting my mind
You gotta move, be engaged, and rest. Recently, I was introduced to the Calm App. I use it to help me to stop thinking. If you are a homeschool mom like me then you know that so much can take over our minds like our children's behavior and learning abilities, our household chores, our husbands' needs, and our own needs. The Calm App helps me to cut all of the thoughts off. I get to embrace being. There's no rush to do anything. I can simply enjoy listening to the stream or other nature sounds and practice breathing.
I used to be a bath taker, but a nice hot shower easily does the trick to help me feel refreshed. I know that many moms often speak of not having time to bathe, but not bathing has never been an option for me not even when I had my c-sections and hysterectomy. Now in those instances the water couldn't be too hot, but there was water. There's something about washing away the day and preparing for a good night's rest that makes me feel calm and peaceful. There's also something about starting the morning with a nice warm shower that makes me feel like the day will be okay. I shower twice a day on most days, and if I need an extra boost there might be a third shower. I not only feel refreshed from showers, but also from getting enough rest. I shoot for getting at least eight hours of sleep because I need it. I need it because I can't function well with less than that.
Hanging out with friends
I've shared many times that I am an introvert, but as an introvert who thinks a lot I need friends to share these thoughts with at least once a week. Hanging out with friends might mean catching up with friends via phone conversations or Skype because of the miles between us, chatting with blogger friends via email or Facebook messenger, or it might mean meeting one of my friends at a local restaurant. I have to have girl time.
These are the ways I care for myself as a homeschool mom. How do you care for yourself? Share in the comments. Your tips could help another mom. Need more tips? Head over to the iHomeschool Network's link up.
Need other ideas for embracing your life while caring for your family? Get the 28 Ways to Embrace Your Life checklist.