Happy Mother's Day
How do I make the time…? I must get this question a hundred times a month.
Well, Maria Shriver used to say you can do and have it all, but not at the same time. I say you can do it all, but a little bit shittier. Sorry for the swear word there, but I think it gets the point across. Put with a less confrontational tone, give up the notion of perfection.
I find that modern women often feel one of two ways: They should be a martyr and make any and every sacrifice for their family or they aren’t a good wife, daughter, mother, friend etc. Or, that they should be able to do everything perfectly. Which makes me want to laugh out loud.
While it is true that before kids I was crushing life. I laughed in the face of every deadline and completed a 60-hour work week with ease. I hit the gym 5 times a week and never missed the level 3 90-minute yoga class at my favorite spot every Saturday morning. And I still got my 8 hours almost every night. I was incredibly productive. Rarely felt depleted. Was at the pinnacle of my career and in the best shape of my life.
Then, I got two kids in the same week and everything changed. I LOVE my children. Don’t get it twisted. But if I told you that they don’t ruin your life I’d be lying. At least life as you formerly knew it. And while ultimately your new life will be immeasurably more rewarding…I work out 4 times a week at most for no longer than 30 minutes a session. I often work out at home to save on drive time. The days of yoga and spin classes that exceed an hour are a distant memory. I miss deadlines and drop balls almost hourly. The bottom line is that kids shift your priorities and suddenly reading your kid a bedtime story becomes more far important than six pack abs. And I highly doubt any of us will get to the end of our lives and think, “geez I wish I’d spent more time at the office”.
That said, I came to realize to that there is a way to still be a good enough mom, maintain my health, and put effort into my relationships. It’s about realizing that parenthood is not all or nothing. My kids don’t need me at every event, every game, watching their every move, or hanging on their every word. We have strong boundaries around kid time and I never interrupt it with work. That said, I also know that being healthy and happy is the best thing I can do for my kids. It sets a great example for them and it allows them to not feel worried about me, my health, or my happiness.
So on this Mother’s Day I’d just like to say give yourself the gift of time. 12 hours a week minimum to be exact. I have found that this is the magic number. With 12 hours I can fit in 4 killer workouts. Any doctors or beauty appointments I need to attend to (roughly 2 a week) and at least two 3 hour nights out. And don’t tell me you can’t find that time. If I can you can. There are roughly 16 waking hours in a day and 7 days in a week. That leaves you with 112 waking hours. If you have a 50 hour work week and then take 50 hours for your kids and household errands you should be more than able to capture the other 12. The key is committing. Knowing you are worth the time. Then, scheduling it accordingly.
So, Happy Mother’s Day. Have a beautiful one with family and friends. And don’t forget to honor yourself.