It hadn’t occurred to me that stopping work, ceasing to do jobs on our house renovation, becoming responsible solely for the care of our son might have an impact upon my sense of self, self confidence and sense of purpose. It’s not that caring for our son makes me any less useful or affects my ability to do any of the other things I used to enjoy, but they are just not priorities at the moment.
I hadn’t really noticed how all these changes had affected me, but having a baby does distract you from most things! It wasn’t until my husband took our little boy swimming, allowing me some time to “do some jobs”!! I suddenly realised, while dismantling the many salvaged pallets, that it was the first thing I had done that hadn’t been just for the benefit of Otis and it felt really nice. In the end I had time to break up about 6 pallets, stash the wood to allow it to dry and de-nail half of the boards, I felt tired, my back ached but I’d had a good few hours off being “mummy”.
It sounds silly but just by occasionally asking for some time to do my own thing would be incredibly important going forwards to keep hold of my sense of identity.
No matter how difficult it might be and how guilty you might feel (come on, all we do is feel guilty about every decision we make each day!), take some time to do something you enjoy every week or couple of weeks, so that you keep a grasp on your identity. Your family will manage and will likely get a better version of you than if you hadn’t taken the time.
Look after yourselves xx