I knew I would need to be nurturing, protective and patient. What I didn’t know until I toured my swaddled newborn around her picture-perfect nursery was that being a mother would demand relentless self-sacrifice.
I wanted to bury myself in my comforter and ignore the 2 a.m. cries. I wanted to go the bathroom without having little eyes watch me. I wanted to leisurely eat a hot meal and grocery shop without rushing back for a feeding. But I couldn’t, because I was a mom.
But you can only sacrifice so much, for so long before something gives – whether it’s your state of mind, physical well-being, or your teeth, like it was for me. In my morning rush to get out the door, I sometimes skipped brushing my teeth in lieu of getting the kids fed, the laundry going, etc. before I left for work. Recently, I was struck with a cavity and the realization that I had sacrificed my own basics in trying to care for everyone else.
Taking care of me is now something I have to resolve to do on a daily basis. I’ve had to commit, silly as it is, to brush my teeth every morning no matter how late I’m running (because really, after my kids move out, I’d still like to have my teeth).
As a cheers to spring and new beginnings, it’s back to the basics for me these days – getting to bed by 10 p.m., eating healthier, and squeezing in a walk on nice days.
What new beginnings are you committing to?