The art of self-care.

hot tea on a rainy day, on a recent "me" dateThis was too good not to share...

"Sacrifice crosses a line into martyrdom when it's not balanced with self-care. Our kids don't need a martyr; they need a mother. A martyr gives up her life to the extent that she no longer exists – she loses who she is while taking care of everyone else. A mother cares for her family and cares for herself. She allows motherhood to expand her experiences and her understanding of herself. A mother models the art of self-care for her children when she pays attention to her need for rest, nutrition, and exercise. She shows them how to find a Friend who understands when she takes the time to pray and read God's Word. She strengthens their faith when they see her turn to God for answers to her own life. Following the example of Christ we can learn to sacrifice without losing ourselves along the way." ~ from Real Moms, Real Jesus by Jill Savage

Since becoming a mother, I'm constantly re-learning the art of self care and how to die to pride.  Why is it so hard for me to ask for help?  I've realized that - news flash - I cannot do it all.  Gone are the days when I managed employees, juggled 20 intricate spreadsheets at once, and did multitudes of data entry at record speed as if I had a third hand.

Nope, can't do it all anymore.  And many days, I just need help.  I just need a small break.

So, now, I take friends up on their offers to watch my daughter for the morning while I go enjoy a hot cup of tea and sit on the floor at Barnes and Noble, flipping through a book in the nature section.  Sometimes getting a few hours to myself is the best choice I can make - for myself, my husband, and my daughter.  Still, I admit it's hard for me to accept sometimes.

But I'm proud to be taking better care of myself lately.  Here are a few examples...

  • Getting regular alone time, however short.
  • Every morning when I wake up, I spritz some lavender oil onto a very hot washcloth and hold it over my eyes and face.  Ahhhhh.  It feels amazing, and I immediately feel awakened and a little pampered.
  • Painting my toe nails a fun color.  It makes a difference! 
  • Going to bed earlier.
  • Waking up before my child, so I can have time to read the Bible and drink tea by myself.
  • Making a green smoothie almost every day.  I feel like a million bucks after drinking it.
  • Getting out for walks at least once a day.  Essential.

How do you take care of yourself?  I'd love to know!