Good afternoon all! This post has been a long time coming. I have been cooking but I haven’t been taking many pictures of the food. Honestly, in the middle of it, I always think, I need to take a picture of this, but then it just gets away from me and when I remember again, the food is half eaten and doesn’t look very sexy anymore.
There have been some inspiring moments though – especially with the beautiful weather that we have been having. Here is what we are eating tonight: veggie chili!
A lovely flower that an old friend brought as we rekindled our friendship:
Signs of warmer weather! Grapefruits on our tree:
And this succulent, called “Mother of Thousands”, budding new baby plants:
A good reminder that there is always something beautiful to see if we look for it.
I am here today to talk about self-care. And burnout. I don’t know – are they two sides of the same coin? Maybe. Probably. The last few weeks have been crazy and much of the craziness was out of my control. I won’t bore you with the details but I can say that in the delicate balance that is motherhood and life, sometimes you are just barely keeping all the balls in the air. And when something unexpected happens, sometimes something big and sometimes a bunch of little things, then, sometimes things just go to s**t. Sometimes there’s vomiting, fevers, partners traveling, public speaking commitments etc and they all happen at the same time.
I was literally drowning, super tired, overwhelmed and worse, feeling sorry for myself. I was super cranky and there was no relief in sight. Then, I read this article called, “This Is What ‘Self-Care’ REALLY Means, Because It’s Not All Salt Baths And Chocolate Cake.” And it really gave me pause – because I was literally thinking something along those lines – this self-care stuff is a crock when things are really hard. Sure, on a day to day, I can take care of myself and everyone else and also be optimistic and kind. But not when things are in dire straits, I lose all perspective and revert back to my pessimistic, doomsday self.
There are a lot of great points in this article, the first of which is “Self-care is often a very unbeautiful thing.” Yup, it’s not chocolate and watching “Jane the Virgin”. The other point that stuck with me is “It is letting yourself be normal. Regular. Unexceptional.” – I know, so obvious, and yet also made me realize that I spend a lot of time working/being at my maximum capacity – work, multi-task, spend quality time with the kids, cook, write, pursue my passions etc etc etc. And lastly, “actual self-care, which has very little to do with “treating yourself” and a whole lot do with parenting yourself and making choices for your long-term wellness.” Now here was the gold – making choices for your long term wellness. SO, now I am thinking about what this will mean for me. I don’t have any good answers yet but I think that some good starts are sitting down when I am tired (super basic I know), not reaching for the next thing all the time. And not taking pictures of food if I am distracted.
I will leave you with one last quote: “It means being the hero of your life, not the victim. It means rewiring what you have until your everyday life isn’t something you need therapy to recover from. It is no longer choosing a life that looks good over a life that feels good. It is giving the hell up on some goals so you can care about others. It is being honest even if that means you aren’t universally liked. It is meeting your own needs so you aren’t anxious and dependent on other people.”
That’s all I have to say. Work in progress. And, for now, I am okay with that. And, despite all this, Haagen Daaz Vanilla Swiss Almond does help. 🙂