As a military member and a single parent, I find myself getting caught up in the everyday motions of life. Being a creature of habit, my daily routines consist of working and parenting. I put my job and children first every single time. It has become a normal way of life without question. There have been countless moments of feeling guilt when engaging in simple self-care activities. After years of living in consistent anxiety and placing myself at the bottom of the totem pole, I am deciding that enough is enough. I can't be a productive a parent if I don't properly take care of myself. I can't be a productive employee if I don't properly take care of myself. This change is slowly progressing, because I am still trying to figure it out, but I've noticed some improvement with incorporating more self-care in my daily activities without taking away from the roles of being a mother and a sailor.
I made a few sacrifices with time in order to fit new self-care activities in my daily routine. However, the time sacrifices have been one of my better decisions. I wake up an hour early to get in a 10 to 30 minute pilate workout (depends on if I include meditation or not), I do a self lymph drainage massage to speed up my body's natural detoxification process and promote blood circulation (not to mention it makes the morning puffiness go away :)), I faithfully use collagen drops after doing a nice facial cleanse, then I proceed with the rest of my morning activities such as: showering, getting dressed for work, doing my hair, getting my children dressed then doing their hair, put them on the bus then head to work.
After work, I pick my children up from school. When we get home, I promptly began cleaning as soon as I walk through the door, because if I don't do it right at that moment, it probably won't happen and I'll more than likely become defeated by exhaustion. Whilst cleaning, if my oldest daughter need help with homework (youngest one doesn't get hw yet), I try to bounce back and forth between cleaning and helping with homework. I am still working on cooked meals for dinner, but honestly some days my children may get sandwiches and smoothies (guilty)! I have not made it to super mom status so there is that. After my children have had their respective meals (lol), I bathe them and get them ready for bed at 8pm ( it was 8:30 at first).
Once my children are in bed that leaves me with an hour to spare. My evening routine consist of taking a steaming hot shower, and I do use an emphasis on the "steam" because of the therapeutic affect that it has. I take care of my oral hygiene (working on flossing more at night...don't judge). I use rosehip oil for my skin, and believe it or not, it does not leave the skin oily, (this comment is not synonymous with anyone else's experience). Love Rosehip! Anyways, back to the topic lol! I try to make my evening routine as relaxing as possible, and attempt to be in bed between 9 and 9:30. Sleep hygiene has definitely been something that I have become more mindful of regarding self-care. I know that with the living demands in our society, we tend to stray away from adequate sleep. I won't get to deep into sleep hygiene on this post, because that will be a post all in itself, so I'll save the details of that for another post. Dang it, I got distracted again, my bad..yall get my point though lol.
I can't act like I don't accidentally skip days with my new routine habits, because like I said, it is still a work in progress. I am human and I do have days where I may feel defeated by exhaustion and other demands, but what matters is that I am working on being better.
I hope whoever is reading this gets something productive out of it. Moral of the story, put SELF FIRST and try to create daily routines. It really does help! This has allowed me to minimize burn-out and be a more productive parent and sailor!