Sometimes, Self-Care Sucks


Self-care. The phrase sounds so positive and pleasant. Ask a group of moms what they like to do for self-care, and you’ll likely hear ideas like reading a book, having a girls night out, or taking a bubble bath. Sounds fun, right? But then there’s the other kind of self-care. The kind that’s dull, or tedious, or even challenging, and bummer for us, that kind is super important too.

As moms, we take care of everyone. Some of the tasks involved are fun, some not so much. I love reading to my children, cuddling with them at bedtime, and bonding over shared hobbies. But do I love doing laundry, packing lunches, and buckling them into their car seats fifty times a day? Not so much. It’s the same with taking care of yourself. 

If I’m being honest, I really hate doing the un-fun stuff for myself, because I’d just rather do something that I find personally fulfilling. Like the time after my second son’s birth that I went to the dentist and found out that I had not one, not two, but SEVEN cavities. Seven. Who gets seven cavities in six months?! Apparently, while you’re pregnant, the baby steals your calcium or some crazy unfairness like that. I had to go to three separate dentist’s appointments to get them filled. Listen, no one wants to go to three dentist’s appointments in a month, especially a woman with a two year old and a newborn. That’s like five hours of my life that I was lucky enough to have my mom watching my kids. I could have being reading, writing, napping… But I sorta had to do it, so that was that.

Then there’s the ongoing self-care that is exercise. I have a love/hate relationship with exercise. Love how it makes me feel, hate how much energy it takes to get off the couch and do it. I am not athletic, not coordinated, and frankly just not that interested. I had an especially hard time sticking to it since baby number two came along until I started… Ugh… Jogging. Who knows why, but I find it motivating. Much more so than Zumba, or YouTube workout videos, or any of the other million kinds of exercise I’ve tried. Sometimes while I’m jogging, I think of all the fun things I could be doing instead. But sometimes I don’t. I try to insert a little fun self-care into it by listening to music, or watching a show if it’s raining and I have to use elliptical. And now, I’m one of those annoying people who is a little addicted to movement. I actually limit the number of times per week I can exercise to ensure that I get time for fun self-care too. Now that it’s a routine, it’s much easier to make time for it. But it’s still one more thing I HAVE to do, even if I sort of want to do it too. 

A few other things I’ve done for self-care that were really worth it: Cleaned out my car (makes life SO much easier). Ordered some new bras online. Meal planned or meal prepped so that I have delicious and healthy food to eat. Went to get that bloodwork I was avoiding (could be a pap/mammogram/physical… anything!). Even though these things weren’t super fun when I was doing them, they made me feel so much better in the long run (get that exercise joke there??). Taking care of the mind, body, and soul of you AND your little ones is a constant juggling act. I usually feel like I’m dropping a few balls, but at least I’m trying.


  1. I have similar issues at age 70, caring for my hub with Parkinson’s. Those medical appointments are not fun but so necessary. Time off to do nothing at all of importance, just looking out the window or taking naps does a lot for me. Love your honesty. XO

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