Mental health can have it’s ups and downs; and when the downs happen it can be a bit much. It happens to the best of us really. That one moment that’s been bubbling up, festering within, that finally explodes when you simply can’t take it anymore. BOOM! Mom’s head is shooting off her shoulders like a rocket and everyone around her thinks she’s crazy.
Now, for some mom’s these kinds of episodes happen more often than not depending on the stress level within your personal life. These kinds of episodes can be triggered by anything or anybody, more often than not it’s the undue pressure we place upon ourselves to be a superwoman.
Now for myself, I personally deal with Major Depressive Disorder, so more often than not, my anxiety attacks are going to occur. One of the greatest things going to therapy ever did for me was give me the simple understanding many of us lack. It goes a little something like this:
SIT YOUR BUTT DOWN SOMETIMES!
Yes. Really, that’s the short of it. The reality is, no matter how much we want to do for our children, our husbands, our extended family; we can’t always rise to the occasion. There have to be moments when we say no. There has to be moments when we take a breather.
If the laundry goes for one day, so be it. If you decide you don’t want to do the dishes one night, don’t feel guilty for asking your partner or your child (if their old enough) to step in. A weak psyche is more detrimental to any chore you didn’t accomplish.
SELF CARE MATTERS
We’ve got to stop thrusting these impossible to accomplish standards upon ourselves. Do your best yes, but even the best of us needs a moment to ourselves sometimes. Go to the library if it brings you peace, go shopping one day and pick something up JUST for you. Treat yourself to your favorite meal sometime etc. My personal way of getting alone time is treating myself to a nail salon visit every two weeks. My hands look and feel great and I’ve had a couple of hours to myself away from the kids.
COMMUNICATION & SUPPORT
It’s important that you communicate with your mate, children’s father, partner etc. what your needs are so that they can be a support system to you. If you’re a single mom, then it’s that much harder sometimes to develop time for yourself. Seek out support from a family member or close friend if possible. Let them know that every once in a while, maybe once a month, you need some alone time. It’s so very important but one of the main things a mom often overlooks.
I remember my mom being totally exhausted with the four of us in the house. I don’t think I truly understood what her reasoning was, not until after I was much older with a family of my own. I know she didn’t take much time for herself, and I know exactly what that did for her.
It is ok to matter to yourself. It is ok to treat yourself with respect. It is ok to say no. It is ok to give yourself break.
Your mental health matters just as much as anyone else’s. You are no good to anyone if you can’t be good to yourself!