Self-care can not be defined or described with just one aspect as I formerly thought. I thought adequate self-care for me was to get out once or twice a month with my husband or girlfriends. I thought everyone, wifommys’ in particular, should have their one thing that they did for self-care. However, the longer you are on this wifommy journey, the more encompassing self-care becomes.

Self-care means making sure you too eat breakfast. Self-care means you too bring a snack if you are going to be out all day and don’t want to purchase food. Self-care means having something nice to wear when you are asked to attend something that requires more than your normal attire. Self-care means masking so you feel nice about the skin you are in. Self-care means smiling at yourself in the mirror as you think and tell yourself that you are pretty.

These are things I do. They won’t apply to everyone but I am using it as an example to show that self-care isn’t one thing, one outing, one activity.  You wifommy are a person. You have varied interest. You are allowed to like more than one activity.  You are allowed to find ways to participate in activities that interest you.  You are allowed to get a pedicure AND have lunch with a friend. You many not be able to do that all in the same day, but you are allowed to do both.  You can not only take your children roller skating, but you can go roller skating too! You can read a book while your child does homework (when they aren’t asking you questions that is). You get the idea.

You must carve out self-care for you.  Self-care is a part of wellness.



As much as I love my bonus children and never exclude them due to malice on my part, somewhere along the line, I separated my bonus mom life from my SAH wifommy life.  I can go through a week or more without having more than a wistful thought about my bonus children.  (Now that I am seeing those words typed before me I see how trifling that is but it is the truth) If my husband does not mention that he has spoken to one of the children or one of the children or their mothers does not call, they become out of sight out of mind.

Now, that being said, I pray for all four of my children during my daily quite time, and I think of them when it comes to planning our family calendar of events.  But to purposely think about them during the day outside of seeing something that reminds me of them (ie a commercial for a cartoon my sons like to watch) No.  My bonus children are not on my mind.

That is not the same for my husband.  All four of his children are always on his mind.  If I may be so bold, I would say my bonus children are on his mind even more so.   He is not involved in the simple day-to-day routine of their lives.  He can’t see them everyday.  That is the nature of the beast.  His mind can often be consumed with worry, fear, helplessness, guilt, and a touch of regret when it comes to my bonus children.  That is constant whether he speaks of it aloud or not.  I know it is there and it can become more apparent at various times.

When it comes to my bonus children, I conduct myself with a sympathetic understanding of my husbands feelings.  However, somewhere along the line, I have found myself thinking that he thinks and feels the same way about situations involving my bonus children without a pang of pain as I do but that is not the case.

My husband and I agree on everything that concerns my bonus children.  That agreement on his part comes with a sadness that I don’t have.  For example, recently, one of my bonus children has been having a hard time in one of their subjects at school.  The teacher gave some suggestions to the child’s mother.  The mother called and told my husband what the teacher said.  The mother disagreed with some of the suggestions. My husband and I did not. I was able to look at the situation matter-of-factly with no remorse or sense of responsibility.  My husband could not.  I could tell that it bothered him.  Not because he felt that he should have been there or that the child’s struggle with that subject was his fault but because that was his child.  Because he has not been allowed involvement past the mother’s comfortably he can’t assist with his own child past giving his opinion which is tolerated at best.  That is painful.

When my husband gets off the phone with the newest news about one of my bonus children, he tells me about it.  I listen.  I wait for a break in is conversation or for him finish speaking (whichever come first) and then I state my viewpoints. My statements are quick and to the point.  Usually, by the time the new news gets to my husband, the situation has been going on for some time so usually my advice is laced with “what do they expect us to do now” tone.  Not to mention that if the problem/difficulty/growing pains/learning lessons/life etc did not originate with this household, we can’t fix it (more to the point, I am not responsible for it).

My husband knows that full well but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t painful each and every time.  I noticed that with this last problem.  I saw my husband’s face out of the corner of my eye when I was finishing giving him my viewpoint.  It was brief.  I saw it and just as quickly, it was gone.  His expression and body language read that my words were heavy upon him.

It was then that I knew how golden silence really is.

Next time I will remain silent.  Next time, I won’t allow a guttural sound to escape my mouth at the mention of the newest news.  Next time, I will offer advice if I am asked for it.  Next time, I will continue to encourage him, his decisions, and how he responded but without  a verbal break down of an ugly situation to an atomic level. Next time.

Standing 8 Count

Gym time, quite time, Bible Study preparation time, hubby time, me time, stay-at-home Mommy time, homeschooling time, household chores and responsibilities time, social time, blogging time, church blogging time, I got tired.

I didn’t slow down.  I just stopped.

Something happened the week of Thanksgiving.  I got a hint, a taste, of time free of restrictions.  Thanksgiving break always makes me feel like I am in school again where I refused to do anything that resembled work during that time.  During school, I wouldn’t do any school work unless it was absolutely necessary and even then, I would do it at the last possible minute because I did not want to do “their” work on my time. Now that I am an adult, I still feel that way.  Instead of absolute refusal of school work, its hit-or-miss (mostly miss) Wifommy work.

We had no home school during the week of Thanksgiving.  My son was up and I baked and baked and baked.  I enjoy baking and being in the kitchen so I do not consider that work.  It’s fun.  I view it as my me time that other people enjoy.

After Thanksgiving, school work resumed, scheduled gym time resumed, household responsibilities etc resumed.  By mid December, I all but quit.

No more school. No more blog(s). Minimal housework. Happenstance dinner plans.

I took a break.  Normally I feel so bad for saying that but I don’t this time.  I didn’t quit.  I didn’t refuse to come back to normal.  I stopped going so hard in one direction and rested.

I learned an important lesson in this and learned something more of myself.

Well placed breaks make me more effective in my role(s).  I returned back to all of the things I wrote at the start of this post with eagerness.  I was excited to begin again.  My  motive was not to ever come back to myself and my responsibilities.  It was to stop all of the day-to-day and enjoy the time and the season.  Because my motive was well placed, I believe my outcome was positive to all involved.

I rediscovered my love of reading through audiobooks!  I enjoy reading a good book but my family cannot afford for me to be engrossed in a book to the neglect of dishes, laundry, and family time which is exactly what I used to do.  Audiobooks enable me to do chores because I can listen to my book while I complete those tasks.   I actually look forward to doing laundry, dishes, and the like because I can escape to my book.  I don’t think I would have ever really discovered this for myself if I didn’t have this break.

I took a standing 8 count.  Now I’m back.