What are you doing to take care of you today? How are you treating yourself? What are you saying to yourself?
Once upon a time I was at a party at a friends house and this woman randomly found me in the kitchen pouring drinks. I was a new mama. Amelia was maybe a year old. I was overwhelmed, exhausted, and lost.
She comes up to me and starts to talk about how I need to take care of me first. Frankly, I thought she was completely nuts. How in the world was I supposed to do that?
My mom certainly never put herself first. She ran herself ragged trying to meet all of our needs. I was determined to be as selfless a mother as she was. Only....I was extremely resentful. I resented the loss of my youth. I resented the loss of sleep. I resented never having a second to myself.
In fact, I was really, really angry at the time. It was bubbling up from I didn't know where. I was really terrible to myself back then, too, so I immediately took my troubled spirit as a sign of my weakness. Work harder. Do better. That was my motto.
This sincere albeit intense and overbearing woman was telling me just what I needed to hear, but it took several years, another baby, a changing lifestyle, and a breaking point for me to really start putting her good advice into practice.
Within months I started to feel direction, and the lost feeling began to slowly drift away. The dense fog turned into more of a misty haze. Within a year I enrolled back in school to study religion, knowing full well that I was taking a step toward my purpose. I was only there for a semester before we moved to this remote-ish village in MI last year, but it restored my self confidence, and reminded me that I was capable of excellence.
By the time we moved here my self care was established as a necessary part of my life, and now, I know just how essential it is to my purpose here.
I adore my mother. Adore, Love, Appreciate, Honor. I am ever grateful for her consistent presence.
But I can feel and express that without doing exactly as she did.
>>My own way lifts me up and makes me a better mother than I could be otherwise.
I Honor that.
>>My own way fills me with JOY.
I adore that.
>>My own way is guided from the deep recesses of my soul, and by the spirit that
>>My own way allows me to shine.
I love me and I love to shine.
I would never have found my way if I hadn't started to take care of myself.
I would never have started to take care of myself if I hadn't ask the big questions that changed my world.
I desired change. I desired happiness.
Boy did I get it.
Anna Turner is the woman behind Little Hearth. She's an ordained interfaith minister, a writer, a believer in purposeful living and healing, a perpetual student, and a full time feminist mother.