Monday, May 18, 2009

Taking Time

I took the day off yesterday. See, I haven't been feeling that great, unable to focus for long periods of time, tired, ill, generally blah. Most of us, when feeling that lousy would call in sick to work, drink plenty of fluids and get lots of rest and be fine by the next day. Unfortunately, I don't usually get that option - as most other stay-at-home Mom's can attest. It doesn't really matter how I feel, my job is there waiting for me, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I get some breaks on weekends because I am blessed to have a husband who helps, but most of the time, it falls on my shoulders - without complaint, mind you, because I totally LOVE my job!! :)

Regardless, yesterday I "called in sick". I needed a day off. I did absolutely nothing. I slept in until 9:30, ate breakfast and went back to bed. I got up for lunch and went back to bed. I got up to make and eat supper and after the kids were asleep, went back to bed. I really enjoyed my day. M took care of the kids and they let me rest. They came to say "hi" occasionally, A especially came to make sure I was still there every now and then, but they enjoyed their "Daddy" day.

What did it teach me? It's okay if I am not available for every moment of the day, to mediate every dispute. It's okay for me to take care of myself too, it makes me better able to take care of those around me who rely on me every minute of every day. I also learned that my husband is good with the kids and I honour him when I walk away saying "I know you can do this. You are a good Dad and I trust you." There are other benefits.

Today, I am not feeling 100% better, but I am out of bed! ;) That's a good start. I can get things done, focus on something for longer than a few minutes and my family is none the worse for wear for my days absence. It's almost amazing that I can disappear for a while without everything falling apart.

At Choices they teach that we need to take care of ourselves in order to take care of others. Unfortunately, all too often I justify my inability to let go. I allow self-defeating behaviour to let me think that I am too necessary, that they can't get along without me. The truth is that, unless I take care of myself, I can cause damage to those I love the most. That I am better able to care for my children and my spouse when I am first refreshed and healthy.

I will be taking more days off in the future. Taking more time to myself when the opportunity arises, because I have learned that I am better for it and that my family is better for it. It will make me a better Wife and Mom and it will make my family a stronger unit.

It is a good lesson to have learned. I encourage you to make sure you are doing what you need to to take care of you. Not until you take care of yourself can you take care of the others in your life. You do them a favour when you are at your healthiest, happiest best.

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