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Mom to Mom

As moms, we can forget who we are. We have children and then-poof!-we’re no longer taking care of just ourselves, but other human beings. How scary is that? Somewhere in the process of raising children, our dreams get put to the side for a better time, or for when the kids get out of diapers. The hours pass by, then days, then years, and before we know it, our kids are another year older and we find ourselves watching yet another year pass by without doing the things we dream about in our hearts. What better time than now? What better reason than this? What better place than here? Let your family shower you with gifts this year on Mother’s Day, but let the biggest gift you get be the one you give yourself.

I’m big on bucket lists. Anyone who knows me or has met me recently knows that I am always working towards checking something off my list. What could be more important than self-care? After all, we’re moms, and we take care of everyone – including ourselves. But wait… we’re supposed to take care of ourselves but we all know that doesn’t happen. We put off the haircut because we don’t want to spend the extra money to get a babysitter. We decide that another girls’ night out is a bad idea because we should be home with the kids. We put that cute shirt back at Target because we don’t really need new clothes. Sound familiar? Sure, maybe some of these things are true and yes, it’s okay to say no to certain things, but for the most part, moms tend to leave themselves out. Don’t just think of Mother’s Day as one day for you – use this Mother’s Day as a springboard for an entire year of things for you.

Get a pen and paper and start jotting down the things you’ve always wanted to do. Write down the crazy ideas like jumping out of a plane, or the sentimental ones, like planning the honeymoon you’ve always wanted. Life is too short to never know what you’re capable of doing. Get your spouse in on the fun, and ask them what’s on their bucket list. Moms are the most selfless people I know, yet we feel so selfish when we do things for ourselves. Change the way you think about Mother’s Day, and decide today that you will be more intentional about self-care. Need a head start? Try some of these ideas.

Download the Starbucks App to your phone and put $10 in your account. Voila. Now you have a super easy way to get yourself a latte on one of those not-so-smooth school mornings. Bonus: tell your partner and kids this is what you would like for Mother’s Day this year. Stock up on coffee gift cards.

Plan a monthly girls’ night out with your friends. Start a text thread on your phone with a few of your closest gal pals and let them in on your new ‘self-care plan’. Take turns deciding what you do for fun, but you go first. There’s nothing better than laughing so hard with your friends that you’re crying by the end of dinner. Every mom needs a tribe of other moms who get her.

Decide how you’re going to stay healthy. I know. This is usually everyone’s least favorite thing to talk about, but the truth is, you really do feel better after a great workout; not just physically, but mentally, too. Change it up and try something different. If gyms aren’t your thing, maybe you try a new route in your neighborhood. If you tend to be the type to back out of actually working out, find yourself an accountability partner. Make some goals for yourself and stick to them. This is a huge confidence booster, and what mom couldn’t use that?

Figure out what’s important to you. I’m not talking about what’s important to your kids or to your husband (although, both are great) but what’s important to you, the mom. Is it having a clean house? Is it looking well-polished? Is it getting respect? Decide what makes you feel good and go after it. Work towards the life you want and make small decisions every day that will end up being big changes over time. No one is going to do all of the things you think about all the time in your head. Us moms just have a special way of cramming so many to-do lists in our heads that there’s no possible way for anyone else to help with that. Dump. Those. Out. Free your mind and the rest will follow.

Schedule that doctor’s appointment you’ve been putting off. No seriously, get your ducks in a row and pick up that phone. Feeling depressed? Call a therapist and schedule an appointment. Call your doctor and see what your next steps are. Is there an ailment you’ve been dealing with because you don’t feel like making the time to sit down with someone and figure it out? Make that call today. It could save your life.

Think dental, too. Some of the way we feel can be contributed to the health of our teeth. Even if you haven’t been to the dentist in years, don’t let embarrassment stop you from making an appointment. This is about you and learning how to care for yourself.

This Mother’s Day is going to be your best one yet. Start today by writing down a few things you would like to see happen this year. Tape the list in a place where you will see it every day so that you stay inspired to get things rolling. Self-care is vital to a mom’s self-esteem and overall sense of who she is. That sounds like a pretty good gift to me.

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