Wait…what?! Can we do that?
When my friend, Kristina, recently suggested we do a spa day during the week, immediately the excitement kicked in, then soon after the guilt followed. Can I part with my sweet little girl and get her a sitter for the day? Since I’m not working, should I spend the money to pamper myself? What about all the laundry that never ends…all the “mom responsibilities” we have on our plate?
As women, wives, and moms, we have so much on our plates. The pressure to do it all and do it all perfectly is real. Especially with social media, it can appear other parents have figured out a secret to parenting that you were left out on, perhaps they don’t have daily struggles. I don’t know about you, but I am tired of seeing articles everywhere you turn on social media saying “If you do this, you are screwing up your kids”, “Things you do that secretly make your children cry at night”. And all the judgements, and criticizing each other about how we raise our kids. You may be a “helicopter Mom”, or “Lawnmower Mom”, or perhaps you’re a “hands-off free-range” Mom. They want to stick you into a parenting category and if it’s different from theirs, you must be doing something wrong.
That’s why I believe more than ever, it’s important to surround ourselves and have a group of women we can relate to. With all the pressures, we need to stand together and support, empower, and inspire each other.
I believe the following five qualities are essential to a healthy support group to surround you with. I came up with these out of experience as I am fortunate enough to have friends that possess all five qualities below.
1) Respect: We are all different and unique in our own ways. But it’s the respect for those differences that helps us look at things differently and learn from them.
2) Acceptance: If you can share you’re most inner thoughts knowing there will be absolutely no judgement, as we are all human, there is something very freeing in this. Accepting each other as we are.
3) Understanding: As a Mom, things come up. If you haven’t read my article “Plans Are For Fools” yet, now’s a good time. It’s important to forgive and understand that kids get sick, things come up. There is no reason to throw any more guilt on it; God knows we have enough of that!
4) Conversation: I love the friendships where you can get real and have deep conversations about life. But at the same time can quickly turn the table and talk about your favorite hair products. When you can go from tearing up and being emotionally moved to laughing so hard you almost pee your pants, that’s good conversations!
5) Inspire: Most importantly, if you can leave the company of friends feeling inspired to be the best mom, wife, and human being you can be and go home refreshed and ready to rock your life, that is worth more than gold! Those are friendships worth nurturing and taking care of.
Any guilty feelings that may come up, quickly dissolve, knowing that I will be a better Mom taking some time for myself. I was truly blessed last week to have spent time with some amazing women that possess all the qualities above and eliminated any “Mommy Burnout” I was experiencing! I am now refreshed, I am more focused on being present and more patient with my sweet babies. Bring on the tantrums…I got this!