When I was a teenager I would overhear my aunts talk about a light that comes on once you hit the big 3-0. Well, I’m six months shy of my 30th birthday and I’m seeing this “light” (awakening) they spoke of. At 29, I am a Wife (married 5 years) and a Mom to two beautiful boys, Noah (6) and Simon (4, Autistic). If you do the math, you can see that I took on a lot of responsibility at a young age. I had no idea what it meant to be a wife or what was required to raise children. To be honest, I wasn’t sure I even wanted kids, but you know…things happen and BOOM! At 22 I’m giving birth to my first child. How I’ve managed over the years is a mystery to me. I also had the nerve to start a business (Bee Wade Makeup Artistry) & an Award Winning Blog, AllThingsBee. Nothing but God for sure!
Being a young mother, wife, and entrepreneur is not easy. You’ve got older people looking at you like you don’t know shit (I didn’t) and your peers looking at you like you’ve: 1. Made it! (Some people view marriage as some sort of lifetime achievement. *eye roll*) or 2. Lost your damn mind. What’s funny is that everyone is kind of right. To commit your life to someone at 22, when I look back on it now was, in fact, a shot in the dark. We had no idea who we were individually and as we began to figure it out through the course of our marriage, naturally, our expectations changed. This is why dating is so important throughout your marriage. They are like check-ups. Through the ups and downs, you want to be sure you and your spouse, (though in different ways) are growing together and dating is one way to stay on top of that. I can’t say we’ve been the best at it and this year has been the test of all tests. Where our lack of check-ups caused some serious malfunctioning we are working to fix.
On Marriage: Don’t wait for things to fall apart to start checking in with one another. Marriage is real work and requires consistent maintenance. If you stay on top of it, you can put out the small fires that have the potential to burn the entire house down. Every couple/ marriage will see some dark days, and that is when the real work and sacrifice takes place. Still, buy the flowers, make the reservation, cook dinner, etc. It’s not about doing these things when it’s easy. It’s the exact opposite. (Unless you are being emotionally or physically abused in any way. Get out that MF’er!)
I really began to feel the pressure at the top of 2017. I was completely worn out with the kids; Simon’s therapy sessions and trying to prevent Noah from feeling overlooked due to the attention Simon was getting. I remember looking at my husband one day and saying, “I have nothing left to give. Nothing.” Moms hold everyone together, keep everything on schedule, and stress about the smallest details. We know that one forgetful moment can throw off the entire day or week. This is the reason why our kids come to us to find their favorite toy (it’s under the couch ) or our husbands to locate their keys (under your hat sitting on the dining room table). We just know because we worry and take mental notes of everything. All of that plus not getting the time with my husband I needed, and one-sided friendships. I. Was. Done. So the question for me became, “How can I take better care of myself so that when life happens I don’t fall apart?”
Self-care is something I’ve heard thrown around here and there, but I didn’t really know how to do it. How do I take care of myself? I hear it’s a spa day. So I would go get my nails & feet done and leave still on the edge, holding onto my sanity. It was confusing because I took time away for myself, right? Why didn’t it help?! My world was surrounded by everyone else’s issues and/ or happiness, that I could never attain own. That’s when I learned self-care isn’t always glamorous. It’s not manicures, pedicures, or retail therapy. It’s bumping a call from that friend that only reaches out for business advice or money, etc. Better yet, it’s answering that phone call and telling that person you don’t appreciate them reaching out only when they want something. Self-care is telling your husband/ child’s father, “I know you have work to do or you’re tired, but I need a minute. If you don’t know what to do with the kids, nows a good time to learn and get creative.” This is what self-care for me has been, (unintentionally) pissing everyone off. Choosing myself above all others, just for a moment.
With that said, I’m just going to put this right quick below. I literally saw this while taking a Facebook break from writing this post:
Where is the lie? Lol
The kids will be alright: Let’s say you’re a soccer mom and you’ve never missed a game. It won’t kill you to miss one (if you truly can’t go or simply don’t feel like going) and your little one will learn that you still love them when you can’t make it. Truth is you won’t be able to keep it up for long. So, when you start filling that time with things you’d like to do for yourself, they won’t take it personally. Start to create a healthy distance between you, your children and their activities now!
Self-care is not selfish, its the best thing you can do for yourself and your loved ones. Trust me I get it. You are one poopy diaper, temper tantrum, or eye roll away from losing your sh*t. So, take a step back and create some time just for you and only you. Whatever or whomever you find to be a threat to your peace, remove it immediately. Those friends that require just a little too much from you or are one-sided? It’s time to set some boundaries.
On Friendship: Let your friends know what you need from them or when they are asking for too much. When they ask how you are doing, tell the truth. Give them a chance to come through for you without having to ask. Depending on the type of people in your squad, these things can go a number of ways. But if they are good friends, they will hear you and give you the space you need to take care of yourself. If not answer the phone a few times causes them to be done with you, they were never really for you. They will go find someone else to drain. Choosing happiness for yourself can piss off a lot of people. Too bad for them I’m in a place where I can no longer care. My sanity, my life, and the energy I bring to my home depend on it.
I could go on, but I think you get the picture. I’m looking forward to sharing more moments like these with you on my #Journeyto30. There are so many things changing inside of me and I will share what I can. Because again, I’m still trying to figure this thing called “life” out too!
Until next time,