STILL the current struggle…

Well. I am still struggling to make time for myself. (So if any wise reader has tips please share… I know some women make it happen.)

For example: I had a three-day weekend & what did I do? I don’t even know… Had fun at the at the art museum, did the groceries, cooked delicious soup for my cousin, broke bread with said dear cousin, watched some Mad Men with MFA Dad, baked some (which might have counted as ‘me’ time but for the fact that our oven broke & I was baking at my brother’s house while my son refused to nap… A nice visit but not ‘me’ time).

What didn’t I do? Ha! Shower (not once… Gross but the truth), sleep well, read for pleasure, read for work, exercise, meditate, BREATHE.

And I got very, very, frustrated with T. So on top of it all I didn’t even feel like a good parent by the end of the weekend.

So here it is Monday morning… I’m on the train & already feeling stressed & hectic. Is this just life as a working mother or is there a better way?

ETA: By the end of the week, this post strikes me as a bit whiny… Which is ok but not necessarily what I intended. I’m not really interested in ‘me’ time for its own sake (though who doesn’t like some time to herself without being accountable to anyone else). I think it’s important that we be able to prioritize leisure pursuits because they make us more productive worker bees & better parents & partners & family members & friends. When I’m burnt out I’ve got nothing to give to anyone. I think that some people are better than others at carving out time for themselves (&, yes, I think men are often better at this than women). I’m not good at it & will just keep on forging ahead, zombie-fied.

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2 Comments

Filed under Feminism, Gentle Discipline, Living, Mothering, Partnership, Working

2 responses to “STILL the current struggle…

  1. Kate H.

    Hi friend,

    As you know, I don’t have a child, but I do have a partner, family, pets, students, and a dissertation, so I know the struggles of finding time to read for pleasure or just do something that restores and nourishes your individual sanity.

    I’ve got two suggestions for you, one about the movement/exercise-related bit and one more general. Re: exercise, I find that taking a class (esp. yoga or something with a meditative/mind-body element) is really a help. It only meets at that one time; if you want to do it, you have to go right then and not put it off, imagining that you’ll fit it in sometime later. And once you’re there, the instructor can help you let go of distractions, guilt, etc., as part of the practice.

    The other suggestion, and this one has really worked for me,is: routine. Even if it’s just 20 minutes or an hour (once a day or a couple of times a week or on weekends), if you build it in and follow through, you’ll start to rely on it, crave it, and make sure you get it. And T. (and colleagues, friends, family, etc.?) can also come to expect it, plan around it, and will likely be less upset by it. “Oh, it’s after dinner-time, Mama always…” (takes a walk, meditates, reads with the door shut, etc.). Once it’s part of everybody’s routine, the struggle and guilt recedes and it’s just another part of the day.

    Good luck!

    • Thanks, Kate! For the suggestions & for reminding me that it’s not just a kid thing. (Damn! There goes my excuse!) I think I will try to start a class one day soon. I can do once a week & go from there. Thank you, my wise, lovely friend!

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