I could repeat this title to myself over and over in hopes that it would sink in. In the depths of my postpartum depression and my postpartum anxiety, I could not fathom doing anything that did not involve my husband or my daughters. I felt so much guilt about being a working mom that I did not want to spend any time apart from my family. I was hyper attached and miserable. In order to be the wife and mom I want to be for my family, I need time to myself. I need time to be physically active, and I need time to nourish my creativity. Fitting in exercise and time to journal or write seemed like an insurmountable challenge to me at the time.
Now my husband and my daughters force me out the door on weekends to get in a run or a workout if I start to become irritable. Fitness has made such a difference in my life and my mental health. I can run or sweat out my frustration and my anxiety. I have found a fantastic group about local mamas who are runners. We meet up to run together a few times a week. These women inspire me, and I so wish I had gotten to know them sooner. I isolated myself so much when I was struggling. The more I practice self-care, the more resilient it makes me. I keep stepping outside of my comfort zone which is where all the magic happens.
So my challenge to my readers is to try something new – take a class, join a group that you’ve always been interested in, submit your writing, audition for a show, read at a poetry slam, take a new exercise class. I would love to hear all about it.
P.S. It was my week over at Postpartum Progress. The lovely Becky Schroeder of Sunny Imperfections posted this, and A’Driane Nieves of Butterfly Confessions shared a survey to help increase our outreach to moms of color and underserved communities. Then I closed out the week with a post of my own.